5 May 2018

Kristen discusses property options with Hodges director Julian Augustini.

In vast contrast to the auctions we attended last week, we saw more properties pass-in on vendor bids this Saturday than sell under the hammer.

The REIV clearance rate for reported properties was sitting at 64% at 6pm Saturday, with 17% of the properties auctioned passing in on vendor bids. More than 10% were sold before auction.

The disparity between vendor expectations and buyer interest is increasing. We are still seeing good numbers at many of the opens we attend, particularly for the ‘A’ grade properties; however, this is now not converting into bidders at auctions for a number of properties.

Some questions that come to mind:

  • Do buyers think they need to be above the price range stated on the statement of information to be successful?
  • Should buyers expect sale prices to be lower than comparable homes sold in the past 12 months?
  • Are vendor sellers within the quoted statement of information?
  • Do vendors think the market is always going up?

Stock levels are good for May with plenty of choice, but most agents are suggesting June will see lighter stock levels, with many vendors opting to wait for Spring before selling.

A changing market can be a good time to buy, sell or upgrade. However, it is important to understand a property’s strengths and weaknesses, as well as the process you might be transacting in. It’s also important to remember that an opportunity is only an opportunity if it meets the goals you are trying to achieve.


  • 2 Rouen Street Hampton (John Clarkson/Sonja Sendin, Buxton) – pretty period home in the Castlefield Estate (heritage protected), small original front rooms, updated and well located to Hampton Street shops – $2,310,000
  • 33 Broadway Camberwell (James Tostevin/Nikki Van Gulick, Marshall White) – comfortable period home that could be further improved, passed in with no bids, selling afterwards over $4m
  • 43 Karma Avenue Malvern East (Steve Burke/Tony Doh, Hocking Stuart) – renovated single-storey smaller home with pool, suit downsizers and younger families – $2,420,000

‘Land’ Sales:

  • 5 Rockingham Street Kew (Claire Endersbee/Sally Morrison, Kay & Burton) – approx. 747sqm, south rear – undisclosed but early $3 millions or around $4,000sqm
  • 507 Orrong Road Armadale (Dean Gilbert/Nicholas Franzmann, Marshall White) – approx. 1250sqm, zoned GRZ3, west rear with older apartment block – $6,600,000 or $5,280sqm
  • 57 Metung Street Balwyn (Sue Wooldridge/Julian Tonkin, JellisCraig) – approx. 649sqm, east rear in the Balwyn High zone – $2,120,000 or $3,266sqm

Some of the better properties scheduled for auctions on 19 May: an architect’s view

63 Wheatland Road Malvern – Carla Fetter / Ian McLennan, Jellis Craig

9 Condor Street Hawthorn East – Michael Hingston/Chris Hingston, Jellis Craig

5 Thomas Street Hampton – Kate Fowler / Robin Parker, Marshall White

15 Moffat Street Brighton – Jason Gill / Kate Schuster, Hodges

‘Off-market’ Properties:

  • Family home on large land, Kew – $6m
  • Period home, well located, Hawthorn – high $3millions
  • Modern, large family home, Hampton – over $4m
  • Large townhouse, good OSP, walk to amenities – early $2millions

Auction Spotlight:

135 Victoria Road Hawthorn East

Andrew Macmillan from Jellis Craig ran a no-nonsense auction (with the usual touches of light comic relief) at 135 Victoria Road Hawthorn East – great crowd & two bidders.

A liveable single-fronted Victorian home with good fundamentals (ie pretty facade, north-facing rear, central location) was on offer here, and a solid crowd of around 100 attended. There was a real vibe at this auction and for good reason: the quote was an enticing one and seemingly the vendor had reasonable expectations. Where else in Hawthorn East can you buy a product like this in the early $1m range? Auction started with a confident crowd bid of $1.25m, and, not long after, bidder 2 came along. Some mixed bidding increments saw the property announced on the market at $1.33m, and then sell under the hammer for $100,000 more ($1,430,000). Good result for listing agents Andrew Macmillan and Clayton Smith – bit of experience there.

2 Serrell St Malvern East

Daniel Wheeler from Marshall White worked hard to try and entice bids out of those attending the auction at 2 Serrell St Malvern East.

This home offers a family package in comfortable condition, having been renovated and extended some years ago. Perhaps the flow of the floorplan and proximity to Dandenong Rd are holding buyers back here. Daniel Wheeler and Clare Moloney headed up the Marshall White team at this auction, where the sun tried to glimpse through the autumn trees onto the reasonable crowd in attendance. Daniel opened with a vendor bid of $1.8m after he was met with the usual silence at the commencement of proceedings. A young family reciprocated with a $20k bid. Following a half-time break and a second bidder placing $10k counter bids, the first bidder gained pole position for further discussions with vendors when the property was passed in at $1.87m. The property did not sell after, with the vendors having far higher expectations, seeking $2.18m.