Teacher Rebecca Wotton and her partner Josh Tingey won $100,000 on a TV show last year - but felt it still didn't make sense to buy a house in Auckland.

The couple, both 27, have bought their first house in Tauranga instead.

They won the $100,000 prize for making the biggest profit, $99,000, by doing up a Henderson house for the TVNZ show Our First Home. Their parents bought the house for them, and sold it after the do-up for $780,000.

"We got a substantial amount of money for a deposit. We were looking up in Auckland for a house," said Wotton, who is now teaching at Greenpark School in Tauranga.


"We just thought, what's the point, it's so expensive to just buy something very small, we'd need to do something with it.

"My partner's family is from down here and we thought, why not, there's nothing tying us except our jobs."

Wotton was teaching at Mt Eden Normal Primary School.

"She was one of six who left from here last year. All left Auckland, some to go and live with their parents to save," said Mt Eden principal John Faire.

Tingey, a surveyor, found a job in Tauranga in the middle of last year, soon after the couple won their prize in April. Wotton moved down at the end of the year.

"I saw the year out because you do get attached to your kids," she said.

"It's always sad to leave a school, you make friends and you get to know the kids. Mt Eden is a wonderful school.

"But I love it down here. The traffic is a bit less, we have family closer which is always nice as well, and things are a bit cheaper."


The couple bought a house in the Tauranga suburb of Brookfield for slightly more than $500,000, and are living with flatmates to help pay the mortgage.

"It's still quite expensive, but not as expensive as Auckland. In Auckland the range was $700,000 to $800,000 and that was just a tiny house," Wotton said.

After paying tax, they netted $160,000 from the profit on the Henderson house and their prizemoney.

"That's a huge amount of money, there's no way we would have saved that without going on the show," Wotton said.

"And it was still not enough, so how do people do it? I don't know."