The Block 2017 Auction Day: Live recap

Richard Whitten 29 October 2017 NEWS

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Join us as we cover The Block finale live: every house, every auction, every laugh... every tear.

Adam Smith: OK, ladies and gents. Here it is. We're moments away from The Block 2017 finale. Who will walk away flush with cash? Who will suffer humiliation and shame? If Josh and Elyse win, will Ronnie burst every blood vessel in his head? We'll find out in about five minutes.

I'm joined by my illustrious home loans producer and sometime Block recapper, Richard Whitten. Richard, from what you've seen so far, who is your money on?

Richard Whitten: Adam, hello! And thanks for sticking through so, so many episodes this season. I'm sticking with the safe option of Josh and Elyse. But I'm not giving up on the crazy dark horse notion of Sarah and Jason getting in with a surprise win.

Who are you going with?

Adam Smith: How hilarious would that be?

Richard Whitten: It'd be great. I'd feel bad for having laughed at them all season.

Adam Smith: I'm gonna stick with Josh and Elyse as well. If I were a betting man, though, I'd throw a bit of money toward Jason and Sarah and perhaps even a bit at Hannah and Clint, whose house apparently has the most tax depreciation potential.

I wouldn't feel bad for having laughed at them, but I would suddenly feel that the universe is a cruel, chaotic place.

Richard Whitten: Hannah and Clint: The taxman's favourite. Yes that's a better way of putting it. Win or lose we were right to judge them.

Adam Smith: I stand by that decision. OK, what are getting a promo for now? The deeply troubling Married at First Sight? It's certainly overwrought, whatever it is

Richard Whitten: It's disturbing to say the least

Adam Smith: And we're on! Speaking of overwrought, let's get ready for an interminable intro

Richard Whitten: Cinematic montage time!

Adam Smith: For me it feels like a bad flashback. I already had to watch all this once. Please don't make me do it again.

Richard Whitten: "It is the biggest Block ever".

Adam Smith: Isn't it always?

Richard Whitten: We've never heard this before. Two seasons from now they'll be building apartment blocks from scratch.

Adam Smith: I want them to go the other direction and just renovate a cubby house

Richard Whitten: A dollhouse reno show would be great. This music, I can't handle it. Scott Cam, bring us down to Earth with your gravitas and dad-like powers.

Adam Smith: Haha. OK, so now it's time to find out the reserve prices. I'm sure an utterly pointless competition will be involved

They were under the house the whole time? IT'S LIKE THE END OF SIXTH SENSE!

Richard Whitten: And now some Roy Orbison softly playing. This is a cinematic/aesthetic nightmare of styles clashing.

Adam Smith: It did have a very David Lynch feel

Richard Whitten: If this intro were a room it'd be shag carpet, Georgian furnishings and neon art on the walls.

Adam Smith: Do you think the sidearms are really necessary? Those briefcases each contain a number on a piece of paper. Who do they think is going to rob them? Numerologists?

Richard Whitten: It's like the Da Vinci Code for people who... no, The Block's audience is the same.

Adam Smith: Hahahaha. So they have to get grilled by judges before they get their reserves. One more chance to make Hannah and Clint feel bad about themselves.

Richard Whitten: Boy have Hannah and Clint suffered this season. OK, so all the contestants are in a grandly appointed room that seems to be.... where the Treaty of Versailles was signed?

Adam Smith: Hmmm. Ronnie and Georgia don't think they'll hit their reserve. Yikes. So they've got some very high reserves it appears. That's the penalty for doing a good job, I guess.

Richard Whitten: No one seems to be happy about their reserves.

Adam Smith: Man I wish they'd tell us the reserves.

Richard Whitten: They are gonna stretch this out forever. Dr Nicola Powell is informing everyone that there are huge number of auctions in Melbourne this weekend.

Adam Smith: Now, auction order. According to our previous analysis, number 1 or 4 is the best position. So they want Josh and Elyse first, followed by Jason and Sarah who are rapidly firming as potential runners-up or surprise winners. Ouch, Shaynna Blaze tells Ronnie and Georgia their house only appeals to a niche market. And, surprise, surprise, Georgia disagrees.

OK, so they're suggesting Josh and Elyse, Jason and Sarah, followed by Sticks and Wombat, Ronnie and Georgia and Hannah and Clint bringing up the rear.

Richard Whitten: Sidenote: Clint's festive party shirt.

Adam Smith: Melbourne has changed those guys.

Richard Whitten: He's here for a good time, not for a long time.

Adam Smith: Party Clint. Ronnie and Georgia want to go third, but so do Sticks and Wombat.

Richard Whitten: I love that everyone has both wine glasses and McCafe cups. This is art.

We're at an impasse in deciding the order! Drama time.

Adam Smith: And, our first ad break. Can we handle the suspense?!

Adam Smith: OK, and we're back.

Why is this being divided into chapters? Did Tarantino direct this episode?

OK, everyone is happy to show their reserves except Sticks and Wombat.

Richard Whitten: Everyone's saying "We've been told to..." Yeah, by the experts, or the producers?

This new bad cop Sticks and Wombat is... exciting.

Adam Smith: OK, so Sticks and Wombat are sticking to their guns more to stick it to Ronnie and Georgia than anything else

Richard Whitten: Which I respect.

Adam Smith: I mean, why do Sticks and Wombat want to keep their reserve a secret? Do they just know that it's lower than everyone else's. So they actually are going to flip a coin.

OK, so final auction order:

  • 1st: Josh and Elyse
  • 2nd: Jason and Sarah
  • 3rd: Sticks and Wombat
  • 4th: Ronnie and Georgia
  • 5th: Hannah and Clint

And now we see the reserves:

  • $2.62m for Jason and Sarah
  • And $2.62m for Josh and Elyse and Ronnie and Georgia
  • $2.52m for Hannah and Clint and Sticks and Wombat.

That's quite a packet for everyone.

Now everyone is arguing that they did a worse job and their reserve should be lower.

"No, WE sucked more!"

Richard Whitten: It's serious money, but these are big heritage homes in a classy Melbourne suburb.

Adam Smith: Yeah and it wouldn't be out of the realm of possibility for them to go for over $3m.

Adam Smith: And we're back folks. I love that the title card said "the exciting bit". So you're conceding that everything thus far has been tedious?

Had to fit in ONE MORE McCafe ad. And a classic "getting ready" montage!

Richard Whitten: It's working. I feel like a quickly made, moderately priced flat white

Adam Smith: Josh looks like an entirely different person when he's cleaned up. I don't know that I like it.

I love that all the contestants dressed up all fancy, but Wombat is still in his Sea Shepherd t-shirt.

Is Elyse wearing a wedding dress? Hint, hint, Josh

Richard Whitten: Woah good pick up: too early to call a Block proposal?

Adam Smith: We've had a fair few Block breakups

Richard Whitten: That actually sounds interesting. I need to go back through the archives!

Adam Smith: And we're off!

First auction. Josh and Elyse's house. A reminder that the reserve is $2.62 million.

Starts right below reserve at $2.6. Already on the market at 2.625

Richard Whitten: And they're over the reserve!

Adam Smith: Going fast now

Richard Whitten: Yikes! This is some money.

Adam Smith: You can always count on good old Frank. Wow it's going NUTS. Over $3 million now!

$3.050. Wow this is intense! Just going up by $1k increments now.

Richard Whitten: Will they clear half a million in profit? (No)

Adam Smith: Sold for $3.067. $447k of profit for Josh and Elyse.

Just a reminder, though, last year's winners Will and Karlie snagged $715,000 in profit. In fact, the last place team last year made $425,000. So is this showing a softer market?

Richard Whitten: It's interesting to imagine The Block in an era of prices cooling off. Could be a harbinger of things to come (do economists track reality TV shows?)

Adam Smith: And, we go to another break.

Adam Smith: Next season will be the real indicator. OK, time for Jason and Sarah. If the auction is anything like them, it's going to take FOREVER


Hughesy bought Josh and Elyse's house!!!!!!

Must not have been too put off by the awkward dinner he had there. In other news, Hughesy is ROLLING in cash

Richard Whitten: He is in a lot of ads.

Adam Smith: Rollin' with that Jetstar money. So the next auctioneer has employed a strategy of badmouthing Josh and Elyse

Richard Whitten: It's a bold move.

Adam Smith: Plays to the "hate Josh and Elyse crowd".

Already over reserve.

Richard Whitten: Sarah and Jason are gonna make some nice profit.

Adam Smith: This has escalated quickly

Richard Whitten: God help me, I'm happy for them!

Adam Smith: Unlike Jason and Sarah, this auction is moving at lightning pace.

At $3m now.

Richard Whitten: It's the hare and the tortoise but with floorboards and tiles.

Adam Smith: Now it's creeping along Jason and Sarah style.

Richard Whitten: Sidenote: these live, dramatic auctions are basically our culture's version of Greek drama or... Shakespeare.

Adam Smith: Sold for $3.007. Jason and Sarah get a $387,000 profit. Once again, well below last year's results.

Do we think Hannah and Clint's house sells?

Richard Whitten: I think it will.

Adam Smith: I shall remember those words.

Adam Smith: Back again, and it's time for Sticks and Wombat. I think if they make enough money to buy Wombat a working toilet, they'll see that as a victory.

Richard Whitten: It's important to remember that financial goals really are different for everyone.

Adam Smith: Jason and Sarah - win a life changing amount of money. Sticks and Wombat: Get Wombat to stop pooping in a bucket.

OK, so we're over the reserve.

Richard Whitten: $130,000 over: that's a decent toilet.

Adam Smith: Seat warmer and everything.

Richard Whitten: This auction seems to be slower.

Adam Smith: Frank is out.

So the auctioneer is stalling a bit. Just to remind everyone, the boys are already at $130k profit.

Richard Whitten: It'll be sad to see two of the most beloved contestants make so little, but they're really here for the fun of the competition.

Adam Smith: Yeah and $130k of profit is nothing to sneeze at.

Man all the other contestants are acting like Sticks and Wombat's house burnt to the ground with them in it. THEY MADE $130K, GUYS

Richard Whitten: Mind you, the boys aren't married, so it's split in a way the other contestants don't need to worry about.

Adam Smith. So it's sold for $2.65m. $130k of profit.

Sticks is. With TWO kids

Richard Whitten: I mean, aren't married to each other.

Adam Smith: I mean, practically

Richard Whitten: Hahaha. But yeah it's still a nice result and they have a great attitude.

Adam Smith: Shelley Craft now telling the other contestants not to treat Sticks and Wombat like they have a terminal disease.

Ronnie and Georgia up next. Time to see if Sticks and Wombat have screwed them by taking the third spot.

I'm guessing no, because there seemed to be a lot of money still in the room at the other auctions.

Adam Smith: Back again and time for Ronnie and Georgia

Richard Whitten: This could go anywhere I reckon. It is a very unusual house in some respects.

Georgia has utterly lost her nerve.

Adam Smith: It is. They started The Block with a style that had very broad appeal but they deviated from that as the series went on.

Richard Whitten: This is tense.

Adam Smith: And their backyard still looks pretty terrible

Richard Whitten: The bidding is slow. They're struggling to clear reserve.

Adam Smith: Yikes. This is unexpected.

Richard Whitten: Ronnie and Georgia have billed themselves as winners all season.

Adam Smith: Yeah they pretty much thought they had this locked.

Richard Whitten: But they could be the biggest losers of the season.

If you replay their most annoying moments this season and mash it up with this - it's an incredible contrast. This is genuinely uncomfortable viewing.

Adam Smith: Wow. This is seriously going to get passed in.

So Sticks and Wombat maybe did screw these guys.

Scott and the auctioneer arguing about strategy now.


This is so unexpected. Ronnie and Georgia's gets passed in.

Richard Whitten: Incredible. The mighty have fallen hard. I can't quite feel bad for them. But I don't feel good watching this either.

Adam Smith: OK, our last auction of the night is coming up. Hannah and Clint.

They wouldn't be feeling to confident after Ronnie and Georgia's result.

Still some fallout from Ronnie and Georgia's auction.

Richard Whitten: No! My predictions have been blown apart.

Some of the bidders are not happy.

Adam Smith: Ronnie showing a great attitude. Perhaps for the first time of the season.

Richard Whitten: It's a rare person who's at their best in defeat.

Adam Smith: OK, so Frank is offering $2.725 which would be $105k in profit. But Ronnie and Georgia want to talk to buyer's advocate Nicole first.

Nicole has a final offer of $2.781. $161k of profit. And they're selling. Not too bad a result, but again nowhere near last season.

Richard Whitten: But some profit. And I'm back to disliking them as normal.

Adam Smith: Hahahaha. We came full circle.

What's our prediction for Hannah and Clint?

Richard Whitten: Hmm I still think they could make a bit. They struggled but their house looks more normal. So far the out there designs have lost out.

What do you think?

Adam Smith: Yeah fortune has not favoured the bold. I predict Hannah and Clint come in third behind Jason and Sarah and ahead of Ronnie and Georgia.

Richard Whitten: Same.

Adam Smith: OK, we're back for our final auction of the evening.

So let's see if Hannah and Clint's likability translates to sale-ability.

Richard Whitten: It didn't with Sticks and Wombat

Adam Smith: They've got our good friend Damien Cooley as their auctioneer, so that's certain to help.

Richard Whitten: You can see him in a few of finder's informative videos.

Adam Smith: And hear him on the Money Podcast.

Still hasn't hit reserve. Ouch.

Richard Whitten: Oh no this looks bad.

Adam Smith: OK it's officially on sale now. Past reserve and jumping up fast.

Richard Whitten: I have whiplash from that turn around.

Adam Smith: Sold for $2.615. $95k profit for our loveable Queenslanders. Who are now Melburnians.

Richard Whitten: I'm glad these guys could get a bit of a win.

Adam Smith: OK, so our final result:

  • The winners of The Block 2017 are Josh and Elyse with $447,000 profit. They'll also win $100,000.
  • Runners up are Jason and Sarah with $387,000 profit
  • Next are Ronnie and Georgia with $161,000 profit
  • Fourth are Sticks and Wombat with $130,000 profit
  • And finally, rookie renovators Hannah and Clint with $95,000.

And we are ALREADY getting a promo for next year.


OK, so what have we learned?

Richard Whitten: I've learned that you can be lazy, useless and utterly out of contention all season on The Block and still make $387,000 profit.

Adam Smith: And that's the greatest lesson we're possibly going to glean.

Richard Whitten: Adam, you've borne the brunt of this season's recaps. Well done. Always a pleasure.

Adam Smith: Thank you Richard. Good night folks. For us it's finally, FINALLY ... tools down.

Missed an episode? You can read our recaps of every episode of The Block 2017 here.

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