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“Bullish” auctions driving prices in Melbourne’s north-west

Hungry buyers splash “big money” in Moonee Valley and Sunshine

Property prices are soaring in Melbourne’s north-west region, fuelled by buyers resorting to “bullish” bidding at auctions.

Fierce competition at recent auctions in the Moonee Valley area has pushed up prices well past vendors’ reserves, according to Barry Plant Essendon/Keilor East director, Bill Karp.

“We are consistently seeing multiple buyers at auctions, with many using a bullish approach to open with bids at or above reserve prices,” he said.

A knockdown-and-rebuild house at 70 Hotham Road, Niddrie, sold on March 6 for $1.454 million, a whopping $254,000 above reserve. A trio of developers battled for the property at the action-packed auction that started with a bid at the $1.2 million reserve, according to Mr Karp.

“Bidding is currently at a level we never anticipated in the early part of this year… there is big money going around,” Mr Karp said.

Across Victoria, sales numbers have jumped more than 30 per cent, according to realestate.com.au Research director, Cameron Kusher.

“Supply levels remain low and demand is unprecedented, which is resulting in properties selling quickly and sales volumes lifting significantly,” Mr Kusher said.

The recent REA Insights Home Price Index report revealed in February, national dwelling prices rose by 0.4 per cent taking them 1.8 per cent higher over the past three months and 5.9 per cent higher than they were in February 2020.

Sales volumes, property prices and listings were on an upward trend in Sunshine, according to Barry Plant Sunshine director Jason Allen.

“The market is absolutely flying,” Mr Allen said. “We’ve seen homes sell for record prices.”

The median house price in Sunshine has jumped 10.8 per cent in 12 months to $791,000, according to the Real Estate Institute of Victoria.

Owner-occupiers, developers and investors are back, wanting everything from units to knockdown houses on big blocks, Mr Allen said.

A four-bedroom 1939 California Bungalow at 35 Sydney Street, Albion, was snapped up recently for $1.1 million, a huge $200,000 above the reserve. “This was a record price achieved for this type of home in the area,” Mr Allen said. “Anything with character is in hot demand.”

The number of listings and sales have picked up since late last year, showing confidence among vendors and buyers.

“The market is chugging along nicely,” Mr Allen said. “We’ve had a 50 per cent increase in listings compared to the same time last year, and 19 sales have already been made so far this month.”

Barry Plant Sunshine has about 20 properties scheduled for auction to the end of March, including a 1920s California Bungalow at 1 Leonard Street, Sunshine, which is attracting interest from across

Melbourne. The three-bedroom home with Sunshine Marketplace, Hampshire Road cafes and the train station at its doorstep, will go under the hammer on March 20 with a $920,000-$960,000 price range.