2 which house will rule? Seven s hit reality show House Rules returns with twists and surprises around every corner. The number one new reality show of 2013 is back. Get ready to see six new teams from around Australia go on a ride of a lifetime, putting their homes on the line and skills to the test, as they battle it out to become mortgage free. Together, they ll travel the country, hand over the keys to their homes and leave their competition rivals to transform every room in their house. With host Johanna Griggs at the helm again this year, six brave teams will gamble with the most important possession in their lives. Acclaimed designer Carolyn Burns-McCrave and build supervisor Chester Drife will be overseeing the teams, who have only one week to completely transform each home. Guided by just five House Rules, the teams will each be given a designated zone in the house to work on and they must draw on all their creative talents, determination and strategy to achieve the most stunning transformations. Two expert judges architect Joe Snell and Home Beautiful editor Wendy Moore will score each teams renovation. But the last word will go to the home owners. Without knowing who was responsible for each zone the home owners will score them all. Will they love or loathe what they see? Scores will be revealed at Homebase, where eliminations will also take place. In a jaw-dropping final, the last two teams face-off for the chance to walk away with their entire mortgage paid off in full. The six teams vying for the life-changing prize are: NSW / Candy and Ryan VIC / Adam and Lisa QLD / Maddi and Lloyd SA / Bomber and Mel WA / Carole and Russell TAS / Brooke and Grant Keep up-to-date with all the House Rules news on the show s official website
3 candy & ryan/ nsw Once owned by Franciscan Friars, this competitive couple s house is truly blessed. That s what we hope, says Ryan. The Friars lived there and owned it for about 35 years. After six months of disappointment searching for a home, Candy and Ryan purchased the three bedroom brick veneer home in Sydney s west in July last year. We knew where we wanted to buy, says Ryan, 29. It was a small pocket we were after. When we opened the front door, Candy and I looked at one another and went Yep, this is it. The electrician owned a home with his parents but wanted something with girlfriend Candy, who he met on a Newcastle dance floor almost five years ago. The pair struck-up a longdistance friendship that eventually led to more. They believe their rock solid partnership will translate into competition success. We re a great team. We complement each other, says Candy, 26. The youngest competitor in House Rules, Candy is a pathology training and development officer at Westmead Hospital. She thinks her age may be an advantage. I hope people underestimate me, says Candy. I want Ryan and I to take people by surprise. Ryan is certain of it. He says Candy s volcanic temper will ensure no-one thinks Team NSW is a push-over. Candy comes across all soft and sweet and innocent but at the flick of a switch she can be as tough as nails, he says. Fans of season one of House Rules, Candy and Ryan were ecstatic when selected to represent New South Wales soon after purchasing their house in Sydney s heartland. We never thought we would actually get in, admits Candy. But we jumped on this ride and are holding on and enjoying every moment, adds Ryan. Family-orientated and impatient to get married, Candy divulges her main motivation for appearing on House Rules was so her partner, Ryan, could finally put a ring on her finger. I really want to get married and have kids, Candy clarifies. But Ryan doesn t want to take the next step in our relationship until all the renovations are done. The most memorable moment for the couple to date is going on holidays to Thailand. When I first met Ryan he always used to say I d love to take you overseas as I d never left Australia, Candy explains. So finally quite a few years later we flew to Thailand and shortly after we landed Ryan looked at me, smiled and said Look babe you are in a different country, every time I think of that moment it makes me smile. Sharing a love for clean angles and bold and colourful furnishings, Candy admits their similarities stop there. Ryan and I are complete opposites, Candy says. Ryan is extremely organised and goal-oriented, whereas I m spontaneous and prefer to just go with the flow. Candy plans on leaving all the big building decisions to Ryan, a jack of all trades, preferring to concentrate her efforts on their budget and supplies.
4 adam & lisa / vic T he driven Gen Ys believe their strong work ethic should get them far. As a teenager Lisa excelled at sport and represented Queensland in water polo from age 18 to 21. She didn t consider herself academic until she went to university to do a double degree in commerce and business, graduating with honours and one of the year s top grades. Her fiancé, Adam, is just as driven. The carpenter and builder is so busy running his company he hasn t started renovating the Melbourne house they bought in April It s really dated, says HR manager Lisa, 29. I said I wouldn t move in with the green carpet and it s still there! Adam and Brisbane-raised Lisa met while working in London in 2009 and two years later moved to Melbourne where he was brought up in a close-knit Italian family. The workaholics are saving carefully to pay off their mortgage. Their only child is their dog Buckley who is named after Nathan Buckley, the senior coach of Adam s beloved AFL team, Collingwood. I wasn t an animal person until I met Lisa and we got this dog and the bloody thing s won my heart over, says Adam, 31. The couple think their ability to remain level-headed will help them in the competition but they re concerned another trait may hold them back. We are the most indecisive people you ll ever meet, says Adam. We can t even decide where to go to dinner. They re also worried about Lisa s lack of renovation and design experience, but hope to make up for it with Adam s insistence on quality workmanship and their fearless attitude towards hard yakka. I m down with getting dirty, says former beauty therapist Lisa, who loves shopping. They want a total overhaul of their rabbit warren so it s transformed into a modern, open-plan dream with retro touches like vintage furniture. Adam had every intention of fixing their 1960s three-bedroom weatherboard home when they bought it. But, like most builders, he s never got around to it. After postponing their April wedding for the show, their sole focus is giving House Rules everything they ve got. And, if they win House Rules, they ll fast track their family plans that Adam, who Lisa calls a flexible control freak, has all worked out. He has a plan for everything and it s not always a fast plan, says Lisa about Adam, who wants two children. That s why I love him. He had a plan for our life. We d get a dog, we d get engaged, we d enjoy being engaged for a while then we d get married, we d enjoy married life and then think about having kids!
5 bomber & mel / sa Bomber and Mel only knew each other for six months before signing up for House Rules. Not a couple to do things by halves, they moved in just three months after meeting online in April 2013 Staring down at his computer, divorcee Bomber couldn t fathom why he was receiving s from friendly female strangers. Without telling him, his daughter Kaitlin, 16, had signed him up to a dating site! It led him to the woman of his dreams, Mel, who just happened to live a few streets away. Three months later Mel bought a house perfect for their blended family consisting of Kaitlin, 16, Ethan, 14, and Jordan, 12 and Mel s daughter Abby, 7. We wanted a house that would bring our families together, with lots of bedrooms and two living areas, but that we could still have separate family time in, says primary school teacher Mel. The 110-year-old weatherboard cottage in Adelaide is just a kilometre from the beach, but has one major problem it s virtually uninhabitable! When they moved in, there was no electricity in the back of the house, no kitchen and gaping holes that let the wind, rain and the city s extreme heat in. We re doing the dishes in the bathroom sink, says Mel, 39. And we ve only got one room with air conditioning so we ve had all six of us sleeping in there on really hot days. It s also got some unwanted guests: neighbourhood cats that enter through holes in the floor. They come in at night and scrounge through our bins, says Bomber, 45, a third generation painter and decorator who owns a pub maintenance company. Bomber and Mel, who both grew up in Adelaide, believe that his extensive renovation experience and their interest in interiors and vintage furniture will be a plus. I think we ve got a great eye for design, says Bomber, who enjoys scouring junk yards and second hand shops with Mel. They don t have traditional gender role ideas so plan to take turns doing the heavy work and shopping. Bomber is big, tough and blokey, but underneath he s really sensitive and sentimental and has a huge heart, says Mel. I m the house husband, adds Bomber, who coaches football in his spare time. Mel comes home from work and she sees dinner on the table. They hope their home s traditional features, like the pot belly stove, will be kept. Their worst nightmare would be an overly contemporary look. Not that I have anything against modern, but not for this house, says Bomber, who renovated a previous home. The pair is concerned that their inexperience working together and Mel s lack of renovation know-how will be a disadvantage. Being in a new relationship and not knowing each other very well could work against us, Mel says. They re both thrilled to be flying the flag for South Australia in House Rules, especially Bomber who was a passionate local league Australian Rules player, the sport where he got his nickname.
6 carole & russell / wa Carole and Russell s Perth home was advertised under the heading renovate or detonate. Without consulting her husband, Carole agreed to buy the rundown fibro cottage she had spotted on the Internet in early She only decided to look that day, says Russell, 55. What am I going to do today? I ll look for a house, Carole, 53, explains. Russell was being ridiculous looking at places that were too expensive so I plugged into Gumtree, Houses for Sale and put in an amount that we could afford. Despite the extensive work the house needed, Carole could see potential and fell in love with the stunning view over the valley. I felt like we needed a project, she says. And what a project they got! Their home-sweet-home is unstable, sits on overgrown land riddled with snakes and has holes in walls patched-up with cardboard. I wasn t happy because there was so much work to do, says administration manager Russell, who also wasn t thrilled about moving from the coast to the Perth Hills. It was a tip. I kicked the balcony with my foot and the whole thing fell off and landed on my car below. With no cash to pay for renovations, they planned to do the hard graft themselves. It would have been a two or three year project, says Russell, who owned a landscaping business in the 1980s. He met Carole, who works for the local council, at a party in The following year they married and blended their families who have since left home. I suffered terribly from the empty nest syndrome, says Carole. Although she admits she doesn t miss the stress. I don t miss the pressure of worrying if they are going to come home because you don t sleep until they do. After they renovated and sold their first Perth house at a profit, the pair lost a lot of money when land values dropped during the global financial crisis in What we re trying to do is get mortgage free by buying something, doing it up, getting a bulk amount of cash and then going on to the next one, says Carole, who would like a light-filled home that her parents, Kath and Ken, can eventually join them in. Carole s dream renovation would be a blend of rustic and industrial décor and large verandahs so they can soak up the aspect. I actually don t mind it being a tip because of the view. It s spectacular. Gym fanatic Russell thinks the other contestants will consider them a couple of old farts, but he reckons they stand a good chance due to their fitness levels, reno experience and Carole s interest in interior design. On the downside, he s worried his wife s blunt and bossy manner, and inability to compromise could get them in trouble. It s her way or the highway, he says about House Rules first grandmother. You ve got to word it the right way, but I don t seem to do that. We argue all the time.
7 brooke & grant/ tas Raising a family of seven in a two-and-a-half bedroom home has this de facto couple focused on winning. We would love to win the competition, says Brooke, 30. It would absolutely change our lives and make things so much easier for us and the kids. We didn t enter to make friends but we don t want to make enemies either. We have one focus and that s to win for the kids, adds Grant, 31. With seven children under 10 living on top of one another, it s easy to understand the steely determination of this devoted couple who came together five years ago. After meeting at a New Year s Eve party, cabinetmaker Grant, summoned the courage to telephone Brooke and the pair has been together ever since. But the practicalities of living in such small quarters with such a large family have pushed the couple to breaking point. The only way forward would be for me to rent somewhere else which I don t want to do, Brooke says. It would be more costly and we want to be a family. The 100-year-old-plus timber farmhouse on acreage in Tasmania s picturesque Huon Valley has been home to this real-life Brady Bunch for the past two years. But without extra space for a growing family of six boys and one girl, the heart-wrenching prospect of Brooke having to find alternative accommodation seems inevitable. The house is too small, says Brooke. The laundry is outside and it leaks when it rains. And the bathroom just isn t functional for all of us. There s no privacy. There s a dickey lock on the door, so You could be in the shower and turn around and there s a kid sitting on the toilet, laughs Grant. The toilet out the back is old and leaky and spider-ridden. The kids don t like going in there and I don t blame them. Huge fans of the first season of House Rules, Brooke and Grant applied never thinking they would be chosen, and now cannot wait to hand over their house keys. Getting selected and knowing we could get an extra bedroom or two? We re pumped! says Grant It s already changed our lives and we haven t even started. As the daughter of a builder, Brooke is familiar with construction sites and is ready to roll-up her sleeves with Grant. Both believe they will be the team to beat. My background in joinery and construction is a massive advantage going into this competition, says Grant. There s nothing I can t tackle and won t have a crack at. Self-confessed workaholic Grant, who grew up in Wagga Wagga and Canberra before moving to Tasmania in his early 20 s, regularly puts in 14-hour days to make ends meet. With Brooke working part-time in childcare in between her early childhood studies at university, there is little money for anything other than basic necessities, so a win is a must. It would put us 10 years ahead, says Brooke, who was born and bred in Tasmania. She grew up on a hobby farm and wants a similar carefree lifestyle for her family. Definitely, adds Grant. We re going to put in 110 per cent every week so we walk away knowing we tried our best.
8 maddi & lloyd / qld Queenslanders Maddi and Lloyd are so laid-back, their House Rules application almost never made it in. Lloyd ed me at work and said We should apply for this and sent me the link but because he s so lazy, I had to fill it all in, says Maddi. We always have people over. It s a bit of a party house, so it d be good to have nice bedrooms where they could all stay over in style, says Maddi. I looked at how detailed it was and started it, then ed it off to Maddi, laughs Lloyd sheepishly. The names: he filled in the names, adds Maddi rolling her eyes. Then he ed it off to me. The house has been ravaged by the region s tropical weather over its 25 years with rot and mould a problem, along with leaky taps, uneven floors, an unusable kitchen and a grotty bathroom. Deadlines and dates aren t a priority for this casual couple, both 27, who can t even agree on how or when they got engaged. We were originally looking for a renovator because Maddi and I wanted to put our own stamp on our house, says Lloyd. She s useless with dates, says Lloyd. She s forgotten my birthday three years in a row. But after securing a House Rules spot for Queensland, the pair is now more than happy for strangers to take the reins. We re like, Go for it! Go nuts, says Maddi. One experience they do remember is first walking through the door of the four-bedroom Townsville house they bought in April last year. I walked in and didn t even need to see the whole house. We just went Yep and made an offer on the spot, says Maddi, a marketing manager and former reporter. Their large, high-set timber home with a wrap-around deck and pool is only minutes to the beach and backs onto a reserve frequented by wildlife. Pythons, dingoes and wild pigs are almost as regular visitors to the neighbourhood as family and friends. Maddi and Lloyd want to entertain the latter in comfort. Their unflappable nature is what Maddi and Lloyd believe will make them a formidable team in the competition, along with their design ideas and building experience. Before joining the aviation firefighters, Lloyd worked in the building industry as a plasterer and labourer for close to a decade, while Maddi has grown up on building sites. I ve lived in, like, 30 houses. Dad would renovate them and then we would move on to the next. I enjoy the smell of sawdust. It feels like home. Home for Lloyd was originally Papua New Guinea where he was born before his family moved to Cairns when he was six. Maddi hails from Victoria, but grew up in Brisbane. My parents live in Brisbane, Lloyd s parents live in Cairns, and we live in Townsville, so we represent a bit of Queensland. I love it. I wouldn t live anywhere else.
9 johanna griggs / host Away from television, Johanna Griggs runs a construction company, making her the perfect House Rules host. Renovating is ridiculously good fun, says Joh. But I d be lying if I didn t say it can also be extremely stressful. There are so many things you can t control on a building site. Joh, and her builder husband, Todd Huggins, run a successful construction company on Sydney s northern beaches. Through it they have built and renovated dozens of homes. But would she let complete strangers like the contestants on House Rules renovate her digs? I would have a heart attack just thinking of what they might do, laughs Joh. I admire anyone who has the courage to hand over their house keys, but I m way too particular. Joh predicts even though this year s contestants watched the first season, none will be prepared for the emotional and physical challenges involved with renovating around the clock. I think they were all genuinely shocked to learn the renovations truly are done in only one week, and what looks relatively easy when you re watching it on TV, is much harder in real life. It will test relationships, but for some past contestants, the experience brought them closer. Improving bonds is just one highlight of the hit reality program for Joh. House Rules offers many more. This show is a once in a lifetime opportunity, says Joh. At worst, our contestants will walk away with great memories, a renovated home, and skills they can use for life. But if they win, they will have their entire mortgage paid off. The freedom that will provide is just incredible. There are no losers in this show. It is unlike any other in that regard. In addition to her much-loved hosting role on House Rules, Joh will continue to anchor the multi-award winning Better Homes and Gardens, which she has fronted for almost a decade. The popular presenter and former successful international swimmer is a TV industry veteran with a stellar career spanning over two decades and several genres including reality, lifestyle, sport, comedy and news. In addition to Seven, Joh has also worked with Foxtel, Ten and the ABC. Joh is an avid charity worker, donating her time and services for organisations including the McGrath Foundation, the Humpty Dumpty Foundation, and Sydney s St Vincent s Hospital. She is a proud mother of two sons: Jess, 18, and Joe, 17. In the rare moments she gets to unwind, Joh enjoys cooking and gardening.
10 wendy moore / judge Wendy Moore returns for season two of the hit renovation show, but this time round she ll deliver her no-nonsense critique directly to contestants. I m a pretty honest person. My aim is to be constructive and truthful, but I won t sugar coat my opinions, she says. The feedback may be brutal at times, but the teams will get a much clearer picture of what is expected as well as how they can improve. As editor of Home Beautiful magazine, Wendy Moore is regarded as one of Australia s foremost experts on style and design. She has helmed the title for almost a decade. Home Beautiful is about being inspired to create a home you love, and House Rules is about teams coming together to create a home for someone else to love, says Wendy. I enjoyed every minute of the first season. It was amazing to see what can be achieved in just one week, and then to see how each team improved throughout the season was incredible. Wendy says she can t wait to see what the six teams will deliver in season two. I m expecting to see people step it up a gear with their renovations. I ll be looking for practical, but clever, liveable solutions. I want to see innovative ideas and high quality work. They re remodelling peoples homes so they have to make sure everything is done right. Handing over your house keys to complete strangers is a proposition Wendy says she never would have entertained before working on the show. I d have to say my mind is now changing after seeing some of the amazing transformations from season one, she laughs. But it s still a huge risk entrusting your home to strangers. That s the wonderful point of difference with this show. We are dealing with contestants own homes. They have an emotional connection to their houses and the tension that comes from handing over their keys is just so authentic. Watching their stories becomes addictive. Arming people with ideas and the tools to help transform a home is the reason Wendy signed up for House Rules, and took on the editorial role at Home Beautiful. I have worked in the magazine world for more than 20 years, but Home Beautiful was my dream title and the one I wanted to work on. It s a magazine I have a personal passion for. I love looking at the homes and all the amazing ideas my team offer. It s so inspirational. Wendy has worked for some of the country s biggest selling magazines including the Australian Women s Weekly, Woman s Day and Burke s Backyard magazine. Wendy lives in Sydney s inner west with husband Peter and her three-year-old twin girls, Darcy and Ruth. In her spare time, Wendy enjoys running and gardening.
11 joe snell / judge Revered architect Joe Snell predicts House Rules will showcase outstanding design ideas for viewers. All the contestants putting their hand up for 2014 know what they re getting into and will be better prepared, says Joe, 36. With this start, who knows where we could end up? I m hoping we will see some really sophisticated design work from the first renovation. Joe s appreciation of design began as a child. The son of an architect, Joe was always surrounded by sketches of buildings and floor plans. However, it was only when he enrolled in a Bachelor of Science, majoring in architecture, that he realised it was the career for him. Joe holds a Bachelor of Architecture and a Bachelor of Science (Arch). He was educated at the University of Sydney and the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen, Denmark. In between degrees, Joe travelled to London where he worked as a real estate agent for several years. I believe my time in real estate made me a better architect because I learnt what people wanted in a house what was practical and useful, and what wasn t, says Joe. He hopes the House Rules contestants will be brave in their design decisions, but also that they listen to, and correctly interpret, the House Rules when they are renovating. This season I m looking forward to delivering my critique and judgments directly to the contestants, says Joe. I think it will help them realise my feedback is not personal. Hopefully they will take the criticism constructively to create a better space next time. As a designer your work is judged all the time. It is a skill in itself to take that critique objectively and turn it into better work for your client, he says. Joe has achieved much success during his 15 plus years as an architect, with national design awards for commercial, event and retail projects. He says he s delighted to be part of a program which not only shines a light on his craft, but changes the fortunes of people forever. This show is a win-win for everyone. Even if contestants don t walk away with the top prize, everyone ends up with a renovated house and skills they can use moving forward. Most people think that architecture is this massive thing, but hopefully by watching House Rules they will realise it is just about making your day a little better. As well as architecture, Joe has a passion for lighting and has created exhibits for Vivid Sydney, an annual festival of light, music and ideas, which transforms city landmarks. Joe lives in Sydney with his Danish wife Laura and their two boys Asger, 5, and Bjorn, 3.
12 carolyn burns-mccrave / designer Carolyn hopes the teams take every House Rule to heart and commit 100 per cent to their design vision. Committing 100 per cent to your design vision is where Wow moments come from, enthuses Carolyn. Carolyn s original and innovative ideas regularly create such moments, which is why her work is featured routinely in some of the country s most popular and prestigious home magazines. Carolyn set up her own interior design business with husband, Leonard, almost a decade ago after working for some of Australia s top architectural and interior design offices. And Carolyn says its success is due to a simple formula. Listening to and learning about the unique needs of clients is the foundation on which our work is built, says Carolyn. And it is the best advice I can offer House Rules contestants. I want teams to take every House Rule to heart and make sure those rules are reflected in everything they do in their zone. But, before they start, they must try and have a clear design vision. The effervescent Melbourne-based designer is excited about using her skills again to encourage a new crop of budding designers. Mentoring and supporting contestants with their design choices is one of the highlights of my career to date, says Carolyn. I love watching people develop their eye for design. So confident is Carolyn in the coaching abilities of the House Rules team of experts that she maintains she would have no qualms handing over her house keys to contestants. I d jump at the chance to hand over my house to see how their ideas take shape. One of the hardest things about planning a renovation is the ability to look at a space with fresh eyes, Carolyn says. Houses are just physical spaces that are being transformed. And you are never going to know how good your house can be until someone takes you there. The House Rules contestants are completely objective about each new home and that is where exciting new ideas come from. I love the whole concept of this show. It embraces the idea of working with what you have to suit the way you live. I ve always said you don t necessarily have to design it bigger, you just have to design it better. Carolyn and Leonard have designed and renovated their own 1950s cottage, from top to bottom. It is scattered with expensive designer furniture and vintage finds and bargains to give it a layered and personal look. Carolyn is currently in the process of designing a new home for herself, Leonard and their two boys Fintan, 11, and Lorcan, 9. Seeing the reactions of home owners to last season s transformations was all the motivation I needed to tackle a new project for myself, says Carolyn. There is nothing more exciting for me than creating a home that nurtures and inspires.
13 chester drife / build supervisor As the build supervisor on House Rules, Chester Drife will once again oversee each of the teams projects. My role on the show is to keep contestants safe and focussed amid the mayhem, he says. It is also to ensure we deliver a professional, standout result for every team s house. The 35-year-old knew early on that a career in building was for him. I was always good working with my hands and problem solving, says Chester. It just came naturally to me. Chester grew up on a beef and dairy farm near Albury- Wodonga, moving to Melbourne at 16. He began an apprenticeship after completing high school and worked for several high-end architectural companies before starting his own business. Building is something I m passionate about. It s wonderful taking someone s dream and watching it take shape and to see the look on peoples faces once a project is complete. House Rules was Chester s first major television role and he admits, like the contestants, he had no idea what he was in for, but the experience has been a career highlight. The first season was a human endurance experiment for me, he says. An entire house gutted and rebuilt into a dream home in seven days seemed unthinkable, but somehow the teams pulled it off. With the opportunity to walk away with a fully renovated home and garden, and a mortgage free existence, Chester says all the contestants are hungry for a spot in the grand final. This season there are some really keen, capable and competitive teams fighting for the big prize, but the twists and turns we have in store, and the hard yakka involved, will absolutely throw them. Last season ordinary couples from all around the country showed Australia the impossible can be done. And I cannot wait to see the reaction from each team this year when they see their brand new home. When he s not working on House Rules, or busy with his business, Chester enjoys extreme sports like sky diving and snowboarding. He s also been rebuilding a classic 72 Norton motorcycle. My baby is nearly ready to growl back to life after much painstaking work. I inherited her in pieces and it has been a labour of love rebuilding her. I almost don t want to get her dirty. Chester is also a keen traveller, taking a year off work in 2012 to journey through Europe, Israel and the United States. He s hoping his next big trip will be through South America.
14 SYDNEY MELBOURNE BRISBANE ADELAIDE PERTH ELIZABETH JOHNSON T E AMBER LEWIS T E JULIE GARVEY T E ROBYN SMITH T E DEBBIE TURNER T E LIBBY RAYNER T E HELEN GANSKA T E
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