An estate agent shows a family a lovely house

Portsea. Winter. Freeze your extras off.

Real estate. Winter. Hibernation. Nothing to see.

And then came COVID, the re-play.

It’s hot. Hot, hot, hot.

Just look:

8 lots about as far as you can go from Salubria-On-The-Clifftop without falling into Bass Strait.

31 bidders. Count them. Thirty-one.

5 bidders for each lot. Reserves sinking under oceans of money. Four sold for over $7m. $46m spent in an hour.

That leaves 23 bidders wandering the Peninsula with millions in loose change. It’s like nothing seen before, even in Salubria #1: Toorak.

And that’s not all …

Land. Toorak land. The litmus test.

Last month’s impossible $12,200/sq m is starting to look like a bargain. Four weeks pass and 34 Albany Road sells for over $14,000/sq m.

Yes. A great block. But already there’s a knock-on effect. Agents’ phones ringing with clients wanting to put their prices up to match.

In 48 hours? Really? Don’t hold your breath.

And this…

Armadale warehouse. Unique. Hard to value.

But, but, but…

Reason said $9m. Buyer said $10.5.

Games

Our client, NotHisRealName, answers the phone. It’s Agent Devious: “I have a buyer for your house. Ready to pay $XX,000,000.”

NotHisRealName is intrigued, “Really? That’s interesting.” And that’s where the conversation ends.

Our phone rings. It’s Agent Devious: “I’ve just listed NotHisRealName’s house! Fabulous house! Perfect for one of your buyers!”

Really? Promising a buyer when there was none? Listing without authority?

That was all news to NotHisRealName.

News travels. Reputations crash. Careers burn. Yet still there are too many devious players out there in agency land.

Games (cont’d)

Agent A: “I’ll sell your house for $12m.”

Agent B: “I’ll sell your house for $15-16m.”

Agent C: “I’ll sell your house for $18m+.”

Yup. Same house.

Agent A is a pro. Agent C has been doing this for about 10 minutes.

The Lesson is: Do your due diligence. Choose with care.

And don’t accept that there can be $6m between quotes.

Quick Hits

  • COVID symptoms take many forms, including the buyer who could have been the owner but had to stay home.
  • New Stamp Duty is going to take a bigger bite. We know of one $250k dodged bullet — all done pre July 1.
  • Experience says to expect quiet in July and August. That’s pre-COVID experience. There are still crowds of buyers, sellers and agents ready to pounce.
  • There are more top end apartments looking for love in Toorak than ever before. Just one reason they’re still looking: Price.

Keep warm.

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