Carlton pair blitzes field in property TV show

IT HAS been a whirlwind year for John and Neisha Pitt, of Carlton, who blitzed their competition in the grand final of Channel Nine’s renovation show The Block last week.The duo won the third series of the reality show after their Vaucluse unit sold for more than $1.1 million — $205,000 more than their reserve.

“We thought if we cracked the $1 million mark we would be happy,” Mrs Pitt said.

“When we picked the envelope to go first under the auction hammer we were a bit nervous, but it turned out quite well.”

None of their fellow competitors got $1 million, and one unit failed to reach its reserve of $880,000.

The couple, who are renting at Sutherland, received $100,000 — on top of their profit — for drawing the highest sale.

“Winning has put us into a totally different category,” Mrs Pitt said.

“We have never owned a single-standing house, and now we can afford one.”

The experience was familiar territory for the pair, who spent 12 months renovating their old house at Carlton before they sold it in April.

They only had eight weeks and an $80,000 budget to complete their project on the TV show.

“I’d say that about 90 per cent of what people saw on television was just how it was,” Mr Pitt said.

“There were times when another contestant would be brought down to our apartment for the entertainment value, but Neisha and I were very hands-on.”

The couple juggled their renovation schedule around work commitments.

“It wouldn’t be uncommon to work until 2am and then be up by 6am when the cameras would arrive,” Mr Pitt said.

“The whole process was exhausting, but at the same time it helped us become more confident with renovating.”

The couple called on the expertise of Matthew King of McGrath Estate Agents, St George, after he sold their Carlton property.

Even with little knowledge of the Vaucluse market, Mr King led the winners to victory.

“John and Neisha designed their property to suit the broader market, which clearly paid off,” he said.

The couple will celebrate with a holiday in Bali before looking for property in Sutherland Shire.

Who was your favourite renovator couple on The Block?