“The old school way is to hold back … but my two agent friends just said to go for it, so that’s what I did,” she said.
Declining prices enabled her to stretch her budget a little further, but also affected the sale of her Sydenham house in July. The result for the penthouse was largely in line with her expectations.
“The price guide was ridiculously low … which we all knew was a bit silly, but the pre-auction offers were a bit lower [as well],” she said.
Selling agent Sam Abbas of Stone Real Estate Rockdale said the cooling market, and a significant increase in the building’s strata fees, prompted him to guide the property below the 2018 sale price. The owners also felt they had overpaid at the time.
He began with a guide of $1 million, which was then increased based on buyer feedback.
“I did feel confident that we were going to exceed that because we had the two emotional buyers … but I did not think that they were going to pay much,” he said.
There had been a noticeable uptick in buyer interest recently, Abbas added, and he felt that buyers had adjusted to rising interest rates and had become more comfortable to transact.
In Balmain, a pair of semi-detached sandstone homes at 39-41 Booth Street sold for $6 million, well above the $4.8 million price guide and $5.25 million reserve.
Two of the three registered bidders made offers on the double block spanning 682 square metres, which records show last traded for $1.2 million in 2007.
The five-bedroom property sold to a family from the inner city through Lynsey Kemp, of Belle Property Balmain. The result was well above expectations, she noted, given the money that interested parties felt they would need to spend on renovations, and the fact the local market had pulled back about 10 per cent from the peak.
“At the end of the day, it’s such a historic landmark home, on a good block of land … and the two buyers knew [such properties don’t come up often].”
In Freshwater, the state government also achieved a $6 million price tag for an original six-bedroom house, that all interested parties were looking to knock down to rebuild on the 694-square-metre block.
Eleven parties registered to bid on 10 Kooloora Avenue, which was owned by the Health Administration Corporation, a state government entity, and had to be marketed without a price guide.
The auction opened at $4 million, and five parties pushed the bidding to the reserve price before a local family walked away with the keys. The property last sold for $350,000 in 1993.
Selling agent Michelle Galletti of Cunninghams Real Estate said it was a good result, but below what other blocks in the street had gone for at the market peak. The price reflected the cooler market conditions, and the higher building costs that buyers had to factor in.
In Darlington, a first-home buyer couple purchased a two-bedroom terrace at 65a Edward Street for $1.18 million, after the sellers cut their reserve from $1.2 million.
It was a stop-start auction for the 88-square metre block and two of the three registered bidders competed. The auction opened at $1 million, then stalled at $1,025,000. Bidding resumed after a vendor bid at the $1.1 million price guide, then stalled again at a $1.16 million bid from the first home buyers.
Following negotiations on the auction floor, they agreed to up their offer by $20,000 to meet the sellers halfway.
Selling agent Duncan Gordon, of Raine and Horne Newtown, said it was a fair result for a home that was ready for a renovation. The property last traded for $165,000 in 1991.
“Given our reserve was $1.2 million and we got to $1.18 million, the owner is still relatively happy … and the buyers were thrilled,” he said.
In Epping, a buyer planning to relocate from Melbourne outbid local families to purchase a four-bedroom house at 77 Chester Street for $2.82 million.
He was one of 16 parties registered to bid on the 992-square-metre block, which had a $2.35 million price guide.
Bidding opened at $1.8 million, and competition between 10 of the bidders pushed the price well above the $2.5 million reserve.
Selling agent Catherine Murphy, of The Agency North, said it was astounding to get so many bidders in a sluggish market but noted the renovated home had ticked a lot of boxes for family buyers.
The home last traded for $331,000 in 1990.