By Tom Carey
A single-storey weatherboard home in Northcote surpassed seller expectations after selling for $3.35 million at auction on Saturday.
The five-bedroom, three-bathroom home at 16 Knowles Street on a 602-square-metre block benefited from a refined renovation in 2015 and has a separate private studio at the rear.
A young family and a family with older children were the only two bidders for the home despite interest from other parties.
A $2.7 million vendor bid started proceedings before the two bidders competed quickly against one another with increments such as $50,000. The sale price cleared the reserve of the property by $535,000.
“In their own words, the vendors bought the worst house on the best street. These vendors were meticulous in their renovation, so they have a great eye for detail,” said Nelson Alexander selling agent Robert Cattanach. The home is positioned close to local schools, High Street and Merri Creek trails.
“It’s a really good-sized block for that area. They were able to have this big renovation but still have a productive veggie garden and a self-contained unit at the back,” said Cattanach.
The northside property attracted a lot of interest among its community with 60 people attending the auction. “There hadn’t been a home of this calibre and soul for a while,” Cattanach said.
Public records show the block last traded in 2009 for $830,500.
The auction was one of 704 scheduled in Melbourne on Saturday. By evening, Domain Group recorded a preliminary auction clearance rate of 68.1 per cent from 504 reported results, while 52 auctions were withdrawn. Withdrawn auctions are counted as unsold properties when calculating the clearance rate.
Elsewhere, an exclusive bayside residence in Hampton was snatched up by a young family for $3,205,000. The sale of the renovated Californian bungalow fetched $355,000 more than its reserve price.
The opening bid for 43 Holyrood Street was $2.9 million. Bidding was strong until $3.1 million, when bidding slowed and increments of $20,000 and $1000 were made until the final sale.
The underbidder – who flew from Sydney on Friday night to attend the auction – had a final bid of $3,204,000. All five bidders who competed in the auction were young families seeking a move to the prestigious bayside area. The auction lasted 12 minutes and 80 people watched.
Marshall White Sandringham auctioneer Robin Parker said he was impressed by the competitive auction. “The vigorous bidding surprised us. The price guide for the property was $2.7 to $2.9 million and I was going to offer a vendor bid of $2.7 million to start the auction but straight away, we got a bid of $2.9 million,” he said.
The three-bedroom, three-bathroom home was lived in by the vendors for close to 40 years. It has an open-plan indoor-outdoor rear living area with a spacious garden.
“These homes are hard to find, particularly [on the] beach side of Hampton Street,” said Parker.
In Brunswick, three eager first home buyers competed for a three-bedroom townhouse at 44a Talbot Street.
Bidding opened at $980,000 and the home was declared on the market at $1.05 million.
The last 80 bids were all $1000 offers and after a lengthy auction, the winner was able to snatch up the property for $1,181,000.
There was a crowd of 50 that included many family members of the bidders.
Nelson Alexander Brunswick auctioneer Mark Verrocchi said the successful young couple was ecstatic after winning the auction.
The home is spread across two levels, has a rear courtyard and off-street laneway parking. “It had really good-sized bedrooms with bright and spacious windows on every side,” said Verrocchi.
The townhouse was previously an investment property for the vendors. Saturday’s auction was only the third time the vendors had been to the property while owning it.
Ray White chief economist Nerida Conisbee said more properties were starting to come onto the Melbourne market.
“More listed properties are slowing down price growth. We have seen pretty decent price growth in Melbourne since the start of the year but it looks like it has slowed down a bit because of all that new stock,” Conisbee said.
“More stock coming to market is likely to moderate price growth and keep the clearance rate under 70 per cent.”