Melbourne homeowners are jumping on the auction bandwagon as reserve prices are toppled amid strong clearance rates.
Auction numbers in February and March are likely to rise with growing buyer and seller confidence, according to several directors of Barry Plant offices. Vendors who listed in January were generally well rewarded with prices above vendor reserves, they said.
Thirty-six properties are up for auction by the Barry Plant Group on the first weekend in February, with one already under offer. More than 500 auctions are scheduled for the weekend in Victoria.
Agents predicted more sellers to list their properties as the auction market ramps up after an early summer start.
“We sold all except two of our auction properties in January - a time that people used to think was way too early for auctions,” Barry Plant Moonee Valley director Bill Karp said. “There is plenty of energy and confidence, and demand is driven by buyers keen to secure a home.”
Among capital cities, Melbourne was the busiest with 388 auctions for the week ending January 31, with a preliminary clearance rate of 83 per cent, according to CoreLogic. The robust market was reflected in five sales from six auctions by Barry Plant Moonee Valley on January 30. A two-bedroom home at 37 Jackson St, Niddrie, fetched $1.305 million or $105,000 above the reserve, Mr Karp said. Last year, a three-bedroom house down the street sold for just $1.15 million, he noted.
The agency is hoping to get four or five bidders at the auction of 37 Graham St, Pascoe Vale South, which has a $1.15-$1.25 million price guide.
Savvy owners are no longer waiting on the sidelines and are keen to cash in on a market in recovery mode, Barry Plant Manningham director Mark Di Giulio said. “Now is the time to put your property up for sale if sellers want to avoid a glut later in the season,” he added.
The agency has two properties up for auction on February 6 at 4 Graeme Court, Bulleen, and 29A Sonia St, Donvale.
Meanwhile, Barry Plant Inner North has 11 auctions lined up in February and is busy locking in auctions for March, director Jim Dimitropoulos said. He expects 41 Normanby Ave, Thornbury, to attract strong interest from first-home buyers on Saturday.
“Stock levels are low and there have been outstanding results with multiple bidders and buyers out in the market,” Mr Dimitropoulos added.
In Caroline Springs, where private sales dominate, auctions have delivered higher prices and unconditional sales for vendors, according to Barry Plant auctioneer Lars Anastasiadis.
“The suburb is not known for auctions but we are seeing multiple bidders and strong prices and so we prefer to use auctions,” he said. On January 30, the Caroline Springs office sold 14 Scarvell Cres under the hammer for $696,000 or $100,000 above the price guide. Mr Anastasiadis was also confident 7 Tucker Place, Caroline Springs, would do well on February 6 after strong inspection numbers.
Meanwhile, in Wantirna South, more than 130 groups have inspected 22 Roycroft Ave, and at least three bidders should turn up on Saturday, Barry Plant Wantirna director Daniel Cripps said.
The agency recently sold a nearby property at 140 Argyle Way for $1 million - seven bidders pushed up the price $120,000 above the vendor’s reserve.
The first weekend in February should deliver some stirring results and see ecstatic vendors and buyers.