Croydon home sells for $5.3million and breaks suburban record

Sydney’s western interior saw a new house price record on Saturday, the last full day of virtual auctions before the city’s lockdown ends.

A four-bedroom house set a new high for Croydon when it sold for over $5.3million after a two-man race for the keys.

The Queen Anne-style house, built around 1913, was one of 572 properties due to go under the virtual hammer in Sydney on Saturday, ahead of the return of public auctions and home inspections open from Monday.

The 911 square meter block at 20 Dickinson Avenue, Croydon, attracted seven registered bidders but only two had a word after bidding opened at $4million and soared rapidly into $100,000 and $50,000 at $4.85 million, before slowing to smaller increases and selling for $5,301,000.

The property had been priced at $4 million to $4.2 million.

20 Dickinson Ave, Croydon NSW 2132

The house was sold to degreasers on the north shore, by James Montano orf Raine and Horne Leichhardt. Although the result was below the $5.5 million reserve price, set higher to give sellers a buffer, they were pleased with the result, he said.

The property last sold for $1,416,000 in 2009 and has since been renovated.

237 Trafalgar Street, Annandale NSW 2038

237 Trafalgar Street, Annandale NSW 2038

In Annandale, another historic home – a four-bedroom house built around 1906 – sold for $6,010,000, with six bidders pushing the price more than $1million above the $5million price guide of dollars.

Listed for the first time since 1974, the 480 square meter block at 237 Trafalgar Street has attracted strong interest from local and out-of-town families.

Bidding started at $4 million and climbed $100,000 and $200,000 to $5.7 million, before slowing to smaller increments. The house was sold by Robert Clarke of Belle Property Annandale.

318/50 Macleay Street, Potts Point NSW 2011

318/50 Macleay Street, Potts Point NSW 2011

In Potts Point, Alexander Smith of Ray White Woollahra sold a two-bedroom apartment with a study for $2.63 million, with five bidders pushing the price $730,000 above the reserve. The 125 square meter unit last sold for $1,085,000 in 2010.

The spring auction season has started well, despite the lockdown, with Sydney’s median auction price climbing to one record over $2 million in September and the city recording a monthly clearance rate of 78.1% – the highest rate for the month since 2013.

The extraordinary growth is expected to largely ease as homebuyers face the prospect of being able to borrow less, with the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) announcing this week that banks should increase the interest rate cushion used to check whether borrowers could still afford repayments in the event of a rate hike.

The Reserve Bank warned this week that even higher price expectations could lead to “exuberance” and hinted at a further crackdown on lending.

Auctioneer Jesse Davison, director of Auction Works, said the market was still working like a charm, but noted that sellers’ expectations had risen on the back of strong results. Homeowners increasingly expected buyers to pay a premium for their homes, which could become harder to achieve as more inventory hits the market post-lockdown.

Mr Davidson expected to see some buyers rush into the market in the coming weeks, due to concerns over a possible further tightening of lending standards, but noted that most buyers were comfortable with the level of indebtedness they were incurring. It achieved sales in 10 of its 11 auctions on Saturday.

The industry has been eagerly awaiting the return of in-person auctions and open homes, said Real Estate Institute of New South Wales chief executive Tim McKibbin.

“We are all waiting to return to some normality. We still have some distance to go, but officers and the public will be grateful for the introduction of on-site openings and auctions,” he said.