A Day At The Races

Morrell and Koren, the 1st buyer's advocates

Spring Carnival. As always a great deal of money is changing hands – including some at those places where horses are raced.

And, as always, before reaching for your cheque book it is prudent to refer to some of the world’s pre-eminent authorities on daylight robbery. The Marx Brothers:

Punters, bookies, jockeys and horses. One puts the money up, one takes a clip and the other two answer the questions.

The big question: Will it win? The bigger question: What will it pay?

They’re off.

108 St Georges Road Stuck in the gate. Passed in at $4.5 million without a single bet and now asking … that much?

23 Hopetoun Road Stuck too. Only the bookie makes a bet: $3.25 million. The owner lives in hope of something better.

2a Chesterfield Avenue Pre-race odds said $4 million plus. Checked at the gate and fell back to $3.75 million and now on offer at $4.4 million. Whoa!

14 Moonga Road One bet: $3.61 million. About right, but still not over the finish line.

5 Myamyn Street A favourite among the punters with talk of four or five ready to plunge. On the day only two went as far as to get a bet on before the race was abandoned. Later reports suggest an after-dark struggle over the line at well below expectations. That’s racing.

And then came the bolter:

30 Rockley Road Paid big dividends in the early $4’s.

All up, Group One is not like the lower strata. If anything the owners are still a length or two ahead of where the punters are ready to play.

Yet the buzz is big. At one $5 million + open on Saturday there were at least 20 potential punters looking to take the reins. That would not have been seen even six months ago.

There are also signs of discretionary spenders emerging with designs toward the Peninsula. A horse called Red Hill has been arousing interest. Phones have been ringing.

The big question? The usual: “How much?”

David Morrell

Bayside: Solid dip.

As foretold last week, the volume of property on offer in Bayside almost proved to be too much. Clearance rates dipped below 70 % for the first time this Spring. That said, clearing two thirds on the day is still a solid outcome and it’s likely that most passed in properties will be sold over the coming fortnight.

It’s now that buyers’ choices are drying up. Barely six weeks remain before activity dwindles to its annual slumber.

And so the imperative is there and was in evidence at 11 Hall Street where it confirmed the Brighton demand for quality family houses in the $2.5-3.5 million bracket. Contemporary, with generous living and sleeping accommodation and north-facing rear garden and pool. Six or twelve months ago it would have struggled at much over $3 million. Over the weekend it had six people competing at $3.4 million. It finally sold at $3.82 million.

Runaway or fair price? Replacing it would cost around $4.25 million and six bidders suggests that the price is sustainable.

Land, always the litmus, also tested positive (you can’t buy what you want? Build it.)

  • 11 Wallace Grove. Big frontage. In a court. North side. 1070 sq m. Lots of ticks and after a slow start, lots of bids from three people. Sold for $2.5 million.
  • 13 Wilson Street. 1,012 sq m. Due for the hammer at the same time as Wallace Grove, it was instead sold prior for close to $2.2 million. It obviously looked good at the time, but after seeing the demand for Wallace, that may have been a little light – regardless, not a bad return on the $1.75 million paid 12 months ago.
  • 24 St Andrews Street. A little over 700 sq m. At $2,070,000 a lot over where many expected it to be.

Entertainment. 47 Regent Street, East Brighton. Expected to go for $2.25 million and a brave auctioneer started the bidding there. Two people. Hammer + tongs. On the market at $2.35 million, exhaustion at $2.455 million.

Auctioneer says he’s about to sell, warns that no late bids will be accepted. Drops the hammer and it’s then that a new bidder tries to gatecrash the party.

Too late, he’s told. Ruckus. Threats of legal action. Auctioneer replies laws is laws. Completes sale with legit buyer.

Good thing.

Damian Taylor

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