It was the biggest makeover in House Rules history but celebrations turned sour at Home Base when cash-strapped Tassie couple Brooke and Grant stunned teams by refusing to give reflective scores.
Despite being overwhelmed by the transformation of their tiny two-and-a-half bedroom cottage into a huge family home for nine, the team - which has been dogged by controversy - continued its contentious ways.
The couple scored Candy and Ryan a 5 for their Kitchen and Kid's Bedroom zone which earlier received the first 9 of the series from Home Beautiful judge Wendy Moore, who described their work as "genius".
Team NSW was visibly upset with the "strategic" score from the last-placed Tasmanians, as were the other teams. "Candy and I both put our heart and soul into that," said Ryan. "It's really disappointing to see Tassie has gone this low. I'd rather come last with dignity than first and come off looking like a loser."
Traditional rivals Queensland sympathised with their competitors. Lloyd stated he was "angry and upset for Candy and Ryan" before he and Maddi came in for similar treatment, receiving a 5 for their zone. "They're obviously on the bottom for a reason," said Lloyd, who received an 8 from both judges. "And by giving out these low scores they're [Brooke and Grant] trying to drag everyone else to the bottom with them."
In the overall rankings, WA's Carole and Russell went from last place to first with their Living Room, Master Bedroom and Toilet. Judge Joe Snell said the master bedroom was "the most complete room in the whole house".
Team SA narrowly avoided finishing last. Bomber and Mel failed to complete a Main Bathroom for the second time, and their Kid's Bedroom had safety issues. Over-confidence and complacency again plagued the recently-paired couple whose efforts this week were described as "disappointing" by the judges, especially given SA had the advantage of choosing its zone.
Brooke and Grant's Team Scores:
- WA Carole and Russell (Living Room, Master Bedroom and Toilet) = 7
- SA Bomber and Mel (Main Bathroom, Harrison and Riley's Bedroom) = 7
- VIC Lisa and Adam (Oliver and Patrick's Bedroom, Laundry) = 6
- QLD Maddi and Lloyd (Entry, Mihayla's Bedroom, Dining Room, Shower Room) = 5
- NSW Candy and Ryan (Kitchen, Hayden and Logan's Bedroom) = 5
The final tally with Home Beautiful editor Wendy Moore and architect Joe Snell's scores is:
Brooke and Grant, who announced at the start of the competition they weren't in it "to make friends", were unapologetic for their decision to score low. It left teams bitter and ultimately failed to change Tassie's overall placing.
The Victorian team felt the couple, who have the lowest mortgage in the competition at $258,000, were ungrateful. "They've been blessed with what they got," said Adam. "Giving them an extension and a renovation? And the scores definitely didn't reflect that. Let's score appropriately."
Lisa broke down in tears after receiving the judges' score, walking off set at Home Base despite Wendy suggesting the team could be the "dark horses" in the competition if they improve their workmanship. Brooke and Grant scored Victoria a 6 which relegated them to last place and another stay in the tent for tomorrow's tropical Queensland renovation.
The teams head to Townsville to renovate Maddi & Lloyd's coastal home. But they soon discover there are pitfalls in paradise. Battling the clock will be the least of the teams' worries as the heat and humidity take hold.
House Rules airs Tuesday and Wednesday at 7.30pm and continues Sunday at 6.30pm before the next home reveal on Monday at 7.30pm.