Finance Property Block judge’s luxury apartment fails to sell – even at discount price
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Block judge’s luxury apartment fails to sell – even at discount price

Neale Whitaker's Sydney apartment has failed to sell at weekend auction. Photo: Getty/BresicWhitney
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The inner Sydney apartment of The Block judge Neale Whitaker has failed to sell at weekend auction.

It was passed in on a vendor bid and now comes with a $1.65 million asking price.

The apartment was bought for $1,705,000 in 2016 when inner city market conditions were stronger.

The three-bedroom, warehouse-style unit at Birmingham St, Alexandria has 135 sqm of space in a SJB-designed block.

Whitaker and his partner David Novak-Piper are looking to buy near Berry on the NSW South Coast and secure a smaller inner city apartment.

They put the apartment up for auction through BresicWhitney with a buyer’s guide of $1.6 million.

Neale Whitaker’s apartment building was designed by SJB, the well-known Australian firm. Photo: BresicWhitney
Whitaker, seen here with partner David Novak-Piper, is a judge on popular TV series The Block. Photo: Getty
Raw concrete grabs the eye. Photo: BresicWhitney
A highlight is the spacious outdoor entertaining space. Photo: BresicWhitney
Another standout is the matching custom timber joinery throughout the apartment. Photo: BresicWhitney
The ceilings are high, at 3.3 metres. Photo: BresicWhitney
You’re not done paying. Buy this home and you’ll have to fork out almost $600 on body corporate fees every month. Photo: BresicWhitney

There were 669 auctions held in Sydney returning a preliminary auction clearance rate of 60.8 per cent, according to CoreLogic, compared to 57.5 per cent across 787 last week, and 74 per cent across 1075 auctions one year ago.

Sydney’s top sale was $4.86 million in Fairlight. The 58/1 Lauderdale Avenue apartment offering through Stone Real Estate agent Adam Moore was put on sale for the first time since construction three decades ago.

The four-bedroom, four-bathroom penthouse came with 436 sqm space. The price guide for the harbour-front home was $4 million to $4.4 million.

It originally sold for $735,000 in 1987.

This penthouse Sydney apartment overlooks Manly Wharf, Fairlight Beach and Watsons Bay. Photo: Stone
It has had only one owner since it was built 30 years ago. Photo: Stone
The four bedrooms each have harbour views. Photo: Stone
The apartment has an open plan with a window to the ocean on almost every side. Photo: Stone

There were 2089 homes taken to auction nationally across the capital cities, returning a preliminary auction clearance rate of 60.3 per cent.

Last week, 2279 auctions were held and the final clearance rate dropped to 58.2 per cent, the lowest clearance rate seen since December 2015.

Over the same week last year, auction volumes were higher with 2824 homes going under the hammer across the capital cities, returning a clearance rate of 73.1 per cent.

In Melbourne, Australia’s largest auction market, a preliminary auction clearance rate of 64.2 per cent was recorded across 1028 auctions this weekend, up from 59.8 per cent across 1099 auctions last week, the lowest clearance rate the city has seen since Easter 2014.

One year ago, the clearance rate was 77.9 per cent across 1326 auctions.

Melbourne’s top sale was in Malvern East.

Kilburn, the five-bedroom, four-bathroom home on 920 sqm at 56 Kerferd Street, fetched $6.11 million through Thomson agent John Chartres.

It was marketed as showcasing “a remarkable sense of refined luxury throughout three brilliantly conceived levels.”

Its price guidance was $5.5 million to $6.05 million, with it announced on the market at $6.025 million.

There were two bidders.

It last sold in 2003 at $1,375,000.

This house in Malvern East was Melbourne’s top sale, at $6.11 million. Photo: Thomson
It’s clearly a family home, with five big bedrooms, a pool and a movie room. Photo: Thomson
There’s also plenty of dining and lounging space. Photo: Thomson
The new owners will no doubt want to entertain. Photo: Thomson
It even has a formal dining room. Photo: Thomson
Despite the period detail, the bathrooms are ultra modern. Photo: Thomson

Melbourne’s cheapest sale was a retirement villa at Frankston. The 10/4-6 Foot Street offering fetched $288,000. There had been $275,000 to $300,000 price guidance on the late 1990s two-bedroom, single-storey unit. It last sold at $169,000 in 2007.

Across the smaller auction markets, preliminary results show that Canberra was again the best performing with a 66.2 per cent success rate across 79 auctions.

Its top seller was at Red Hill where $1.58 million was paid for 3 Golden Grove, an early 1960s four-bedroom, two-bathroom brick home. It was offered for the first time in over 50 years.

The nation’s cheapest auction result was $273,000 through Ray White for 17 Ashvale Street, Kingston, a three-bedroom Brisbane home needing a renovation situated on a flat 607 sqm parcel.

It last sold at $259,000 in 2016 and at $230,000 in 2013.

Brisbane’s top sale was at Paddington. It was an unrenovated 1912 Queenslander on 1000 sqm that sold through Place agent Andrew Degn whom The Courier Mail advised had eight buyers register to bid. The property at 77 Tooth Avenue, Paddington sold for $1.92 million, having been in the family for over 100 years.

Jonathan Chancellor is editor at large at Property Observer

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