Being neighbours with the owners of last year's Toi Ohomai Charity House, Anthony and Robyn McBreen knew they wanted to get their hands on this year's home.

By the time bidding concluded at today's Charity House auction at Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology, the Rotorua couple had done just that.

About 50 people gathered to see the 137.7sq m home go under the hammer by auctioneer and Professionals McDowell Real Estate co-owner Steve Lovegrove.

Bidding began slowly at $150,000 but inched its way up to $200,000 between the McBreens and another bidder.

Advertisement

Mr McBreen made a final offer of $210,000 and the house was theirs.

"It's a bloody nice house, it's a beautiful build.

"The big seller for us is where it's going to go, on a plot of land in Hamurana. The neighbours down from us bought last year's Charity House which was a factor in us considering this year's house," he said.

"We are very happy with the price we paid."

The Charity House project, a home built by the institute's carpentry, electrical and interior design students, is in its fifth year.

About 50 people gathered to see the 137.7sq m home go under the hammer. Photo/Ben Fraser
About 50 people gathered to see the 137.7sq m home go under the hammer. Photo/Ben Fraser

Along with providing a hands-on experience for students, all profits from the sale go back to the community in Rotorua, via Rotary Rotorua Sunrise.

Lovegrove said there were a good number of registered bidders and he was pleased to get a successful result.

"It's the highest value we've ever received for a Charity House, but it's also had the most invested into it."

Last year's project raised a record profit of $46,000, which was given to 23 local organisations.

Charity House team leader Sue Gunn said she was happy with the record sale price.

"The purchasers have done their homework and they love the design.

"There are still some bills to pay but I believe the profit will be close to that of last year's.

"The programme will continue next year. We are so passionate about it and the students, some of whom were here [at the auction], are so proud of the work they've done. They love being able to drive past their work and know a local family is living there."

Applications for funds from the auction will go live next year and can be made through the Rotary club's website at www.rotaryrotoruasunrise.co.nz.