Midweek Minute: Darren Palmer

Have you ever wondered how our judges come up with their weekly scores? Well, we cornered Triple Threat judge Darren Palmer for this week’s Midweek Minute to find out what goes into that number out of 10.

Stepping into a room on The Block, what are you looking for? What’s your judging criteria?
I look at four things at once. I judge on design, appropriateness to the market, finish and inclusions.

Take us through each one, starting with design.
Design encompasses things like flow, scale, layout and floor plan, storage, functionality and generally how the user interacts with the result.

What goes into deciding whether a space is appropriate to the market?
It’s about how the space relates to the geographic as well as socio-economic factors that come into play in different markets in different locations. What is right for one area may be completely wrong for another. Also, considering whether there’s a market for the result is very important in judging a room.

And in terms of the finish?
That’s simply about whether the result has been well done in terms of installation, painting and finishing off, and whether the level of materials is suitable for the buyers that are looking for that particular type of property.

Finally, inclusions…
Inclusions is all about the things that are put into the room in terms of furniture, décor and soft furnishings.

Are those four aspects all weighted equally?
They are each worth 2.5 points. They are as important on The Block as the other… The couples start with 2.5 points for each when I walk into the room. It’s the errors or missed opportunities that remove a half a point here and there. The scores can get quite low if there are errors across all four sections of judging.

Was there a particular room that stood out for you this season?
The big standout for me has got to be Josho and Charlotte’s master suite. It’s a massive coup for them to deliver this space as it functions beautifully, makes the most of the space available, is laid out well in terms of usability and is just a stellar room.


That master suite was Glasshouse’s first perfect 30-out-of-30 room, a five-star hotel suite in a home. Darren and the judges didn’t want to leave, thanks to an exquisite choice of linen and the surprise entertainment unit. Browse our bedroom selections now to turn your bedroom into a perfect 10.