Oct 6: What is the sound of no hand clapping?

This, without doubt, is the slowest and quietest September in over 20 years. Did everyone go North?

Yet the imagination of the real estate agent is a rare and remarkable thing.

They can see buyers where we see … nothing.

Yes, there has been a flurry of listings in the last week. Forced selling? From our side, we can only hope. There is also an interesting trend developing in the abundance of ?lifestyle? properties being offered; and it’s not Spring fever.

Who would want to sell in a global crunch? When the tide is agin you, you would only be selling if you had to; and that is usually for one of three reasons:

1.   Divorce
2.   Relocation
3.   Downsizing

And, new this year:

4.   No choice (margin call).

Property, unlike shares, often takes time to show a real decline; and what follows could be its leading edge:

… the top of the Australian residential property market seems to have cracked. A friend rang yesterday to report two sales he had heard of in the past week, in Vaucluse and Potts Point, in which the houses sold for 25 per cent less than they had changed hands for a year ago.

The words are Alan Kohler’s. The complete article is here. And, yes, it’s Sydney, but the ripple is more than likely to spread.

Yet, as always, properties which are unique, well positioned and desirable, will attract people taking a 5-10 year view. We’re acting for a number of them off-market.

But ‘typical’ buyers and investors this Spring? As rare as marquees in the Birdcage. 

There were a couple of sales on Saturday ? 42 Park Place, South Yarra sold for $3,075,000 with two bidders.

212 Kooyong Road, Toorak sold before auction for around $2.6 million. Why? They have had three or four attempts to sell in the past nine months and this time they weren?t going to let a buyer go.

Our (continuing) advice? Patience.

Bayside? Back next week.


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