A Sydney hoarder’s house, absent the mummified human remains found earlier this year, has sold at weekend auction for $2.07 million.
The result was $270,000 above the $1.8 million reserve for the Greenwich offering.
The purchasers of 31 Greendale Street were an expatriate family in Singapore. They beat keen bidding from a young Marrickville couple.
There are plans to initially renovate and rent it out until it is knocked down.
The skeletal remains of a suspected murder victim, Shane Snellman, were found rolled in carpet inside a bedroom in June, with police revealing the corpse had likely been there for at least a decade.
The owner Brian Roberts, who died of a heart attack last year, had bought the freestanding double-brick house on its 557-square-metre block in 1991 for $200,000.
The police theory was Mr Snellman, who had suffered several injuries, was trying to rob the house when Mr Roberts killed the intruder.
The Sunday Telegraph reported the notoriety, cobwebs, peeling paint, disgusting kitchen and mouldy bathroom were no discouragement for the 11 registered buyers.
Domain suggested it was like a macabre museum exhibit.
Sydney’s top sale was nearby when 15 Vista Street, Greenwich sold pre-auction for $3.55 million.
Built in 1935 by architect Nigel Ashton, the home had been owned by the same family for 83 years.
It came with views of the harbour bridge and the city skyline.
Sydney’s highest sale under the hammer was at Willoughby, where $3,265,000 was paid for 3 Hollywood Crescent.
It was a 1930s bungalow last sold at $1.95 million in 2009.
There were 717 auctions held in Sydney, returning a preliminary clearance rate of 59.1 per cent. One year ago, 832 auctions were held and the clearance rate came in at 67.4 per cent.
In Melbourne, a preliminary auction clearance rate of 58.6 per cent was recorded across 898 auctions on the weekend. This time last year, 1124 auctions were held, returning a clearance rate of 72.3 per cent.
Melbourne’s top sale was also secured before its Saturday scheduled auction, a South Yarra home renovated under the guidance of INARC design.
It was the $6.25 million sale of 23 Airlie Street, South Yarra, which had an asking price of $8.25 million earlier this year.
It had been listed this time with $6.5 million hopes through RT Edgar.
Under the hammer, Melbourne’s top result was in Camberwell, where 12 Derby Street sold for $3.8 million through Jellis Craig.
The indicative selling price had been $3,500,000 to $3,800,000 for Gladstone Villa, a graceful four-bedroom 1889 Victorian residence.
Not far away a 1930s Canterbury changed hands for $1.91 million for the first time after competition between five bidders at its Kay & Burton auction.
Given its one family ownership, Laurel-Leigh, the heritage-protected three-bedroom home at 26 Maysia Street, came with intact lead lighting, stucco walls, ornate ceilings, terrazzo flooring and bow window.
Its pre-auction price guidance was $1.7 million to $1.8 million.
There were five bidders.
On the latest weekend of winter, CoreLogic calculated 1909 homes were taken to auction across the combined capital cities, up from 1684 over the previous week.
“Auction volumes have slowly started to increase over the last couple of weeks, however current volumes remain lower than this time last year when 2270 auctions were held,” CoreLogic auction analyst Kevin Brogan noted.
“Through winter, the number of homes taken to auction has been tracking roughly 20 per cent lower than a year ago, highlighting a substantial weakening in vendor confidence driven by the softer housing market conditions and consistently lower clearance rates.”
Preliminary results show a clearance rate of 57.9 per cent this week, increasing from last week’s final clearance rate of 53.3 per cent, although this will revise as the remaining results are collected.
Over the same week last year the final clearance rate was 68.3 per cent.
Canberra’s 66.7 per cent weekend clearance rate result was the top-selling capital city.
Jonathan Chancellor is editor at large at Property Observer