Serial Block buyer Danny Wallis went home from this season’s auctions empty-handed, having been comprehensively outbid by rival multi-millionaire Adrian Portelli.
Portelli bought three properties at the weekend’s auctions for a grand total of more than $12 million, trouncing his opponent with wild million-dollar bid increases and, at one point, bidding against himself to drive the price of Eliza and Liberty’s house up.
Having bought a total of 10 Block houses to date – eight of them in the past three years – Wallis is not used to losing at a Block auction, and reports from those there on the day suggest he was not happy about his defeat.
Domain reported that Wallis “looking frustrated” by the time Portelli had bought his third property, then refused to participate in the auctions any longer.
He told reporters on his way out that the homes of both NSW couple Steph and Gian and sisters Eliza and Liberty had sold for “too much.”
Portelli bought both of those for well over $1 million over their reserve, delivering Steph and Gian a record-breaking Block win of $1.75 million.
Asked why he didn’t fight harder to secure any of the other three houses, Wallis told Domain: “They’re junk.”
The outlet reported that his sister – who can be seen near him at every Block auction, looking after his dog – expanded on his remarks to reporters: “[They’re] high maintenance for investment properties, which is what we have to consider.”
WA couple Kyle and Leslie’s home sold at auction giving them a respectable $130,000 profit, while SA’s Kristy and Brett were left fuming after their auctioneer could only nudge their property $65,000 over reserve. Nervous about ending up with a similarly small profit, Queensland’s Leah and Ash pulled their house from auction before it had reached reserve, and it is still on the market.
Also present at the auctions was comedian Dave Hughes, who claimed on-air yesterday that Wallis’ giant opening bid for winners Steph and Gian’s house had actually been an error.
Wallis had started the auctions with a bang when his first bid was a whopping $650,000 over the couple’s reserve. Portelli quickly trounced him though, adding another million dollars on top of that in a single winning bid.
“He has meant to say $2,999,000 and he said $3,999,000 – that was a mistake from Danny. That mistake got the ball rolling,” Hughes revealed on 2DayFM’s Hughesy, Ed & Erin.
Appearing as a guest on the program, Adrian Portelli confirmed that his rival had “stuffed up” his opening bid: “I saw him backtrack, realise what he’d done, and I thought I’d put the nail in the coffin.”
The Block 2023 auction results:
Steph and Gian, House 4: Reserve of $3.35 million, sold for $5.000 million = $1.65 million profit + $100,000 prize money = $1.75 million (a Block record)
Eliza and Liberty, House 5: Reserve of $3.25 million, sold for $4.3 million = $1.05 million profit
Kyle and Leslie, house 1: Reserve of $2.97 million, sold for $3.1 million = $130,000 profit
Kristy and Brett, House 3: Reserve of $2.97 million, sold for $3.035 million = $65,000 profit.
Leah and Ash, House 2: Reserve of $2.97 million not met, passed in at auction.