The personal renovation project of Josh Barker and Elyse Knowles, the winners of The Block, has sold at auction for $1.63 million.
For the second time in just three weeks, the young couple were ecstatic when the hammer fell. But this time around, it was a much more personal affair.
Knowles and Barker had lived at 2 Lascelles Street in Coburg for three years, 18 months of which was spent renovating.
"We went a long time without showers, we showered outside," said 25-year-old Knowles. "We lived off a barbecue. We had no walls during winter so we had a puffer jacket on going to bed."
The couple recalled living out of just one room with their puppy, Isla, during the renovations. Barker is a carpenter, so had the technical know-how, but for model Knowles, renovating was a whole new experience.
"We've done the hard yards on this house but it's paid off now and we're pretty damn relieved," Knowles said.
Hundreds of fans lined up in the street before the auction for their chance to walk through the stunning three-bedroom, two-bathroom Californian bungalow. Knowles and Barker took the opportunity to take a photo with the crowd before proceedings kicked off.
But after that it didn't take long for two members of the crowd to raise their hands, and bidding jumped back and forth in $10,000 rises.
A third party, a couple, joined the auction at the $1.56 million mark and carried bidding through to $1,615,000.
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When the auction stalled and Mr Wood had made his "third and final call", a fourth bidder elicited surprised gasps from the crowd when he made an eleventh-hour bid of $1,616,000.
The man and the couple then went toe to toe in $1000 bids until the couple eventually placed the winning bid of $1,631,000, which was $80,000 above the reserve price.
Mr Wood said the new owners were downsizing from within the area, and the property's large garage had sealed the deal for them because the husband, a builder, needed room to park his trailer.
Knowles and Barker were thrilled with the result.
"Now that's it's all done and dusted, it's great," Barker said.
Knowles added: "It's like a big weight has been lifted off our shoulders because we're house free now."
That might not be the case for long though as the couple said they planned to buy and renovate more properties in the future, possibly in Boroondara or Bayside suburbs. "It's a secret," Barker joked.
While title records did not show how much they paid for the Coburg house in 2014, it's understood to have been about $600,000.
The pair also took home $547,000 in winnings on the most recent season of The Block when the Elsternwick townhouse they renovated sold for $3,067,000 to comedian Dave Hughes.
Knowles paid tribute to Mr Wood, who also auctioned their Block property.
"David Wood nailed it," she said. "He had the crowd going. He just knows what to do. It's really good to get a real estate agent you can relate to."
Mr Wood said the pair were a joy to work with and he hopes to sell more of their properties in the future.
The story Josh and Elyse's personal reno project in Coburg sells for $1.63 million first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.