Run-down Thornbury house sells for $940,000 at auction
Run-down Thornbury house sells for $940,000 at auction
A dilapidated house in Thornbury in dire need of a renovation sold for $940,000 at auction on Saturday, to a couple who scared off their competition.
The three-bedroom house at 95 Keon Street was in poor condition: weeds were growing through cracks in the facade, the landing was collapsing, some windows were boarded up and plaster was falling off the internal walls. It had been lived in until three months ago.
McGrath listing agent and auctioneer Luke Brizzi had listed the single-fronted home with a price guide of $850,000 to $900,000. Bidding opened at the bottom of the range, but stalled after the first offer.
Brizzi took a quick break to confer with the vendors, after which a second bidder put up their hand and the auction moved forward in $10,000 increments.
The two parties traded bids until the run-down property reached a price of $910,000, when the second, more reluctant, bidder moved to $5000 increments.
“Are you really going to pass up on the cheapest house in Thornbury?” Brizzi joked, but it wasn’t enough to convince the underbidder to continue.
The opening bidders, a couple, bought the home for $940,000 after warning the underbidder: “We’re going to keep going.”
Brizzi said both parties had plans to renovate.
“They could see the potential in value in the end result,” he said. “It’s not about what it’s worth now, it’s about what it’s worth in the endgame.”
The amount of work needed to make the property comfortable had spooked most buyers, despite inspections being well attended, Brizzi said.
“Those that didn’t have building experience were very, very scared, but those that could see the potential [were interested],” he said. “It’s pretty dilapidated inside. It’s probably not even rentable.”
Brizzi said the buyers were considering flipping the home, which sold for $50,000 more than the reserve price.
The home was one of 912 Melbourne properties scheduled for auction on Saturday. By evening, Domain Group recorded a preliminary auction clearance rate of 64.9 per cent from 696 reported results, while 82 auctions were withdrawn. Withdrawn auctions are counted as unsold properties when calculating the clearance rate.
Later, in Fitzroy, a lovingly renovated terrace sold after competition from three bidders.
The three-bedroom home at 111 Greeves Street was the former home of an artist who recently died. It had been updated by the owner’s daughter, an architect who now lives in Germany.
Nelson Alexander agent Peter Stephens had listed the home with a price guide of $1.55 million to $1.65 million. It featured a loft-style bedroom, a well-manicured courtyard and a polychrome brick facade.
Bidding opened at $1.56 million, and the buyers pushed up the price in $10,000 increments to $1.71 million, then dropped to smaller increases. The home sold for $1,724,000.
Auctioneer Rick Daniel said the terrace sold for $44,000 more than the reserve, and thought it had been well priced.
“I think at the moment there’s a bit more predictability around agents’ pricing,” he said. “You come up with a price based on two things: the owners’ expectation and what’s recently sold in the area.
“And then of course, to see this outperform means that this then becomes a comparable sale for the next one, and on and on we go.”
All three bidding couples were young professionals upgrading from smaller properties, Daniel said, and had been seeking a home that did not need much, or any, work.
“If I had houses like this to sell all the time, my job would be very, very easy,” he said. “Turnkey property continues to outperform all other types of real estate.”
In Malvern, a four-bedroom house sold to a young couple for $4.32 million.
Marshall White director and auctioneer John Manton listed the home at 34 Glendearg Grove with a price guide of $3.8 million to $4 million.
Morell and Koren prestige buyers’ advocate Matt Cleverdon, who was at the auction but did not bid, said three buyers vied for the property.
“[The home] was neat and tidy, and it presents well in a good area and location,” he said.
He said the auction started with a vendor bid of $3.8 million, and the home was announced as on the market at $4.25 million.
“[The Malvern market] is quite positive,” Cleverdon said. “There’s a lot of people looking and stock continues to be a hurdle for a lot of buyers.”
He said buyers in the top-end suburb were “jumping at shadows” as they were concerned by lower numbers of homes for sale.
“Because of the lack of stock for both sales and rentals, people are concerned about where they may end up,” Cleverdon said. “They’re prepared to be a bit more bold and push themselves further to get a roof over their heads.”
In South Melbourne, a two-bedroom apartment overlooking Albert Park Lake – and the Formula 1 track – sold for $1,035,000.
Jellis Craig listing agent and auctioneer Warwick Gardiner said the auction for 8/182 Albert Road had been like a “boxing match” between two bidders.
A woman renting in Port Melbourne, the eventual buyer, started the bidding at $900,000.
A second offer was then made by a phone bidder – a Melbourne buyer in Sydney for the week – and the bidding quickly soared past the $1 million reserve.
Gardiner said the sellers, who were obsessed with Formula 1, were upgrading their growing family to a larger apartment in the block of 15 units.
He said the apartment was a rare find in South Melbourne.
“You have a lot of cookie-cutter apartments [in this suburb], but these are just very tightly held.
“All of the properties are owner-occupied in this block. They’re the premium ones that stand out in this market.”