July 25, 2015


Albert Park: 386 Ferrars St, (Cayzer), after auction, $1.72m, 3 bidders

With only a small number of $1m+ auction numbers this weekend, the results didn’t tell us too much.  Unless we see either a big increase in stock levels, or a sudden drop in the number of buyers looking to purchase, the next few months are likely to be more of the same.

The current feeling is that stock levels will not satisfy buyer demand, and this will keep the market healthy.  Mainland Chinese interest also remains strong for the ‘right’ properties, and this is having a big effect in the inner Melbourne market prices.

We have seen a trend this year in the increased demand for properties on smaller land.  Buyers appear to be more willing to compromise on their garden size to be closer to shops, stations and schools.

We believe this has been brought about by a number of factors:

  • The need to be close to transport and shops
  • Budget limits, where increased ‘$ square metre’ rates are pushing properties on larger land into less affordable price brackets for many buyers
  • A tech driven generation who spend more time indoors
  • Limited options for the downsizer market
  • Lack of stock in general
  • Council zoning changes

Two key sales this weekend:

  • 4 Flowerdale Road Glen Iris (Anthony Smith, Woodards), undisclosed, circa $2m.  A dated 80s home, approximately 715sqm, in the ‘Hill and Dale’ area.
  • 4 Orlando Street Hampton (Amanda Jones, Hodges), 434sqm, $1.505m or almost $3,500sqm.

Not everything sold on Saturday:

  • 17 Victoria Grove Hawthorn East (Greg Toogood, Jellis Craig), passed in VB $1.7m.  Pretty double fronted timber Edwardian with a functional single level floor plan, but no off street parking.  Now a private sale asking $1.95m.

Off-market talk continues, and it appears to us that if you a buyer over $2m then there could be a lot more choices off-market or privately than just those advertised on the internet.

  • Stately Italianate Victorian in Hawthorn – $3.5m
  • Well positioned, lock-and-leave smaller home over two levels in Domain area South Yarra, early $2ms
  • Large period home in Kew, west of the junction – $2.8m
  • Comfortable double-storey brick home, Glen Iris near Corowa School – $2.5m
  • Modern family home, good street, Brighton $4m+
  • New single storey home, Beaumaris circa $3m
  • Options for Bayside family homes with pools and courts, $6m+

Architecturally Speaking

What makes a good townhouse?

1 Trafalgar Mont Albert

1 Trafalgar Mont Albert

We get this question a lot, and when you walk a good townhouse, you just know they are going to be well received by the market.  1 Trafalgar Street Mont Albert (listed by Stuart Evans, Marshall White), is testament to this. Of course nothing is ever perfect (some may not like the style of this home, and think it lacks a deeper, consolidated courtyard area), yet here are ten quick points that make this a great property:

  • Great garaging – wide enough for two cars to park side-by side and direct access into the house;
  • Ground floor master bedroom suite – no steps to negotiate for day-to day living;
  • North facing rear – great for natural light and passive solar gain into informal living areas and rear yard;
  • Good bedroom separation, secondary bedrooms upstairs which are of good size;
  • Quality fit out (albeit a bit dated). Most buyers are very discerning with ‘cheap’ builds;
  • Tall ceiling heights – great for spatial feel and air-flow;
  • Low maintenance external finishes;
  • Good storage options;
  • Generous room sizes;
  • External access from laundry.


Unsurprisingly renowned local architect Michael Monkton designed this, and 14 years on it still works, and works very well. Many people struggle with the cost of a good architect, but it really can be money very well spent which comes back to you in spades when it comes time to sell.

Auction Snapshot:


Malvern East: 101 Manning Rd (Jellis Craig), under hammer, $2.16m, 5 bidders

101 Manning Road, Malvern East (Adam Cashmere, Jellis Craig), under hammer, $2.16m, 5 bidders

Well over 100 people turn up for the auction of this brick Edwardian home, which boasts 707m2 of north facing rear land, yet it is located on a T-intersection and lacks covered car-parking or potential for it.  Auctioneer John Morrisby offers a warm welcome (which is appreciated, given the stiff winter chill) and gives a spirited preamble, and listing agent Adam Cashmore is ready to take down the bids. John duly opens the auction up at with a vendor bid of $1.7m, which is a good move just to kick things along, and not long after a bidder in the crowd cordially obliges with a $25K rise. Not long after bidders 2 and 3 join in and the auction clips along nicely. The property is announced on the market at $2.030m, and then it starts to pull up at the $2.1m mark, selling under the hammer for $2,160,000. 5 bidders in all here fought things out, and the result was not a ‘flyer’ but ‘about right’.


Malvern East: 36 Ferncroft Ave (Jellis Craig), passed in, $3m, 3 bidders

36 Ferncroft Ave, Malvern East (John Morrisby, Jellis Craig), passed in, $3m, 3 bidders

A crowd of around 75 gathered to see what would occur at the auction of this huge piece of Malvern East land, on a corner near Hedgeley Dene gardens – approximately 1263sqm selling with plans and permits for three dwellings. John Morrisby was our auctioneer and the spectators, including one or two developers/investors, huddled around him as he began proceedings. A low opening of $2m came from the crowd. John thanked the bidder for his offer, but quickly tabled a vendor bid of $2.5m in response. Bidder 2 offered $2.6m before John headed inside for a quick referral. Back outside, John tabled a second vendor bid of $2.8m before Bidder 2 offered $2.85m. Bidder 3 entered the competition with a $25k rise and after a couple more bids, the property was passed in to Bidder 3 at $3m.

Agent Opinion: How are stock levels looking as we head into Spring?

mainDamian O’Sullivan (Marshall White): “Stock levels in the wake of school holidays appear to be very healthy and should go some way to appease the strong demand we’ve seen in recent months. With 5 Saturdays in August, volume will naturally be higher than average and will assist many owners wanting to take advantage of vendor-biased conditions.”



Andrew Campbell (Buxton): “After the school holiday period, buyer numbers at opens are still positive. Also, stock levels might still be a bit lean but we will see more properties hitting the market in coming weeks for a very big August.”



medium-John MorrisbyJohn Morrisby (Jellis Craig): “August will be well supported by way of stock levels, especially by the more inner areas.  September and October are starting to take shape with the ‘school belt’ locales beginning to help make spring selling decisions. All in all, numbers are solid to good but not overwhelming.”