One lucky set of contestants on a reality television show may have hit the property jackpot, unwittingly picking a villa in one of Auckland's most sought after school zones.
There may be just metres separating the four homes on the latest series of The Block New Zealand but one already has a possible $125,000 head start on its competitors because of its address.
This year the four homes are split across adjoining Mt Roskill streets, Haig and Renfrew Avenues, but only one is in the enrolment zone for the desirable Mt Albert Grammar School.
The three remaining relocated villas are on Haig Ave which falls in the Mt Roskill Grammar School zone.
According to research carried out by real estate company Bayleys earlier this year there was a $127,400 difference on either side of the two co-ed grammar school boundaries based on median house sale values between 2012-2014.
This potentially gives the couple renovating 35 Renfrew Ave, Brooke Thompson and Mitch Davies, a six-figure head-start on their rivals even before the auction hammer falls.
Show host Mark Richardson has hinted the re-located house four held a "hidden secret" but has not revealed what it is.
Mediaworks would not be drawn on revealing villa's secret.
Head of commissioning and external production Sue Woodfield said there were a vast range of theories surrounding the House four advantage.
"Each villa on The Block NZ has defining features which will be revealed in the coming weeks on TV3."
For the young Canterbury couple competing to win $100,000 on top of any profit made in the home's auction it appears secondary school zones did not figure in their decision to claim the house.
Instead they revealed earlier this week the villa's northerly aspect and room layout was uppermost in their minds.
"We think for the sun, it's practically got all day sun in that house - that's a huge factor - and I really liked the layout of house four as well so we really want to move," Thompson said on the show.
Mt Albert realtor Anne Duncan said the Mt Albert Grammar zone was increasingly sought after by families wanting their teenagers to have a more traditional grammar education.
"Mt Albert Grammar School is a huge drawcard. We're selling houses to people who live out-of-zone because they want to get in to zone."
Compared to a house that was not in-zone it would certainly have more appeal, she said.
"There'll certainly be a difference so long as the person who is in zone doesn't muck it up," said Duncan.
Barfoot and Thompson director Peter Thompson said school zones in the hot Auckland market were still playing a significant part in commanding top dollar.
"Certainly school zones can have a major impact on the value of property. It's most probably just as much today as it has been over the last 20 years."
A Mt Albert Grammar School spokeswoman confirmed pupils living in Renfrew Ave families would have automatic entry into the school but those from Haig Avenue would have to go into a ballot.
"The number of out-of-zone places we have available is declining by the year as demand grows from our in-zone families," said Estelle Sarney.