Anyone for tennis?

Hit, miss. Hit, miss. Hit, miss …



  • 31 Lambeth Avenue. Usually a popular spot in Armadale. Double-fronted timber Victorian on 373 sq m. Passed in. Now offered at $1.7 million.
  • 9 Spring Road, Malvern. Passed in with not a bone on the truck at $3 million.

In the next two weeks:

1 Hopetoun Road, 4 Forrest Court and 11 Cole Court in Toorak, 24 Somers Avenue in Malvern, 49 Harcourt Street in East Hawthorn. Either by auction or expressions of interest. Indicators of what lies ahead for the top end.

Oddity of the Weekend:

Open house party in a prominent Toorak street. Up to 3,000 people pay a $1 donation at the door for security. By event’s end the house is somewhat re-decorated. Ouch.

Agent’s quote of the week:

“It is a bit patchy at the moment.” Right. Well, now we know.

In a word? Mixed.

House warming for some, house repairs for others and only 12-ish weeks left for done deals prior to Christmas.

Spot the dummy?

Yup. They’re around. A warning: You Will Be Pinged.

Christopher Koren

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Bayside mixture thickens.

The past weekend was seen by some as a pivotal indicator of the Spring market: agents and sellers praying for a return to more buoyant conditions after a fairly grim Winter.

Early signs are to expect some improvement in transaction numbers, but only if stock levels increase and buyers can find fair value. The rapid swing in buyer sentiment over the past four to five months left many sellers isolated and their properties unsold. It has taken a quiet Winter for the penny to drop and for that backlog to mostly clear.

Who will be a seller and who a statistic over Spring? A lot rests on the agents. It’s up to them to keep their vendors in touch with the new reality.

What moved …

Bentleigh and its up-market cousin McKinnon performed well over the weekend: 10 sales from 12 auctions and nudging the median price along with several sales at the top end of both.

  • The standout was at 3 Anne Street, high on McKinnon Hil. An extensively renovated and extended “Cal bung” on a relatively modest 580 sq m realised an exceptional $1,827,000.
  • Nearby, at 20 Jean Street, a somewhat smaller version of the above also performed well. Modestly quoted in the $1,050,00-1,150,00 range, buyers ignored the “guide” and competed up to the eventual sale price of $1,315,000.
  • Another strong result was at 17 Twisden Road. Again fully renovated to a high standard, bidders pushed the price above the top of the quote to a sale price of $1,460,000
  • 51 Hill Street in East Bentleigh, an original weatherboard on a considerable 960 sq m found favour with builders and developers: sold for $1,330,000.

Even in this weaker market, well located land and exceptionally presented houses with the right accommodation and facilities are still attracting the attention of multiple buyers.

Hampton and Sandringham generally did well on low numbers of properties offered. Top price on the day was 23 Gordon Street, Hampton. On 1007 sq m, it’s a well located two storey 1930’s style house with plenty of accommodation. It sold for $2.8 million.

In an area better known for its period style houses, an offering in the Gipsy Village precinct of Sandringham stood out from the rest: 4 Susan Street, on 752 sq m, had renovate or remove written all over it. A bygone style from the 60’s, its position and land size obviously appealed and it sold for $1,400,000.

Black Rock outgunned its Beaumaris neighbour with the strong result achieved at 31 Arkaringa Crescent. A contemporary family house with all the goodies, on 914 sq m in a name street, it sold above the top of the quote range for $1,965,000.

And then to Brighton, where the news is less than upbeat.

19 auctions scheduled. 7 sold under the hammer or shortly thereafter, 2 sold prior, but with 10 passed in it would seem Brighton is still doing it tough.

Of those sold, the highest on the day was 42 Foote Street. Historically a keenly sought location a few doors from Elsternwick Park, the auction was lacklustre and the property passed in to a sole bidder at $1.7 million. Some persuasive arguments must have been put because it emerges the buyer ultimately parted with $1.83 million. Although it’s 689 sq m, the relatively narrow and constricting frontage of 13.7 metres dampened the enthusiasm of some wishing to build a new house on the site.

Another couple of land-value sales were recorded at 53 Whyte Street (698 sq m): $1,492,000 and 94 Dendy Street (643 sq m): $1,484,000

Again, anything at or over $2 million struggled.

Meanwhile, the mopping up continues with a number of sales of properties that have been on offer for months to many many months. Agents, ever bashful, have become very coy about disclosing sale prices. While they want the world to know they have finally sold a property, all sorts of reasons are given for not revealing any more.

Could it be that the price finally achieved was a long way South of that initially suggested?

And then …

75 Roslyn Street, Brighton. Sold for $2.64 million. In 2008, it sold when new for $2.58 million.

71 North Road, Brighton. John Knox House. It’s on 1700 sq m and was bought in original condition in 2007 for $2,200,000. Now extensively restored, rebuilt and extended, it sold in the past few weeks for a price we believe to be just over $5 million.

3 Wellington Street. Auctioned at the end of May, it was passed in on a vendor bid of $4 million, refusing a later offer of $3.8 million. We believe it has now sold for $3.75 million, but the selling agent will not confirm the exact price.

Finally to an Expression of Interest sale at 36 Gordon Street, Hampton (reported as Brighton Beach). An architect designed reproduction period house on 1500 sq m, it sold soon after the campaign closed for $3.38 million.

And also …

We hear talk of certain serious sales being made at the upper end. More on those when we are at liberty to report them.

Damian Taylor.

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