Sydney’s residential property market over $1 million – don’t believe everything you read

September 30th, 2010

spring

Talk this month of a softening in the Sydney residential property market belies what has been occurring in the auction rooms and elsewhere in the Sydney property market between $1 and $5 million.

With spring in the air, continuing low interest rates and near full employment, buyers in that bracket have emerged from a hibernation prolonged by the hung national parliament and school holidays to notch up at least 220 reported sales throughout a large sample of representative suburbs in September 2010.

More surprising than the relative buoyancy in the $1 to $3 million bracket were the suburbs in which the activity has occurred.

Lower but by no means moribund turnover remained the order of the day in the $3 to $5 million bracket. In the eastern suburbs for example, 148 Glenmore Road, Paddington found a buyer at $4.75 million as did the haunting 7 Darley Street, Darlinghurst at $4.625 million. Others however, such as the high quality renovation at 33 Davies Street, Surry Hills were wheeled out for another viewing having failed to sell earlier in the year.

Although the bellwether suburb of Paddington led the way with 29 reported sales in the $1 million to $5 million bracket, its fashionable cousins of North Bondi, Bronte, Woollahra, Surry Hills and Darlinghurst between themselves only managed to notch up the same number of top end sales which included:

  • 24 Hewlett Street, Bronte – $1.945 million
  • 30 Midelton Avenue, North Bondi – $1.926 million
  • 263 Darlinghurst Road, Darlinghurst – $2.54 million
  • 38 Ridge Street, Surry Hills – $1.5 million
  • 1 / 33 Edgecliff Road, Woollahra – $3.3 million
  • 55 Brown Street, Paddington – $2.1 million
  • 31 Glenview Street, Paddington – $2 million.

Balmain, Birchgrove and Rozelle shook off its ‘insular peninsula’ tag with the 19 recorded sales in that district putting it in equal second place for the month. All below $3 million, these sales included the quirky north to the rear 14 Clayton Street, Balmain which managed to fetch $1.36 million and 2 Ford Street, Balmain which, despite being a few doors down from a hotel, traded for $1.205 million. A big ticket item was 8a The Terrace, Birchgrove which sold on 30 September 2010 for just under $3 million. Other sales in this quaint pocket of the inner west and which suggested a lack of concern about the road access problems that are likely to worsen with the widening of the Iron Cove Bridge and the White Bay development included:

  • 11 Grove Street, Birchgrove – $1.165 million
  • 32 Rosser Street, Balmain – $1.6675 million
  • 2 / 1 – 3 Phoebe Street, Balmain – $1.29 million
  • 13 Llewellyn Street, Balmain – $2.18 million.

Proving there is still a strong market for big houses on larger blocks of land 10 kilometres from the City, Roseville on the upper north shore was the big surprise with 19 reported sales in September – enough to put it in equal second place behind Paddington. Not a bad result when it is considered that in addition to having about 40% fewer residents, Roseville occupies about 60% of the area of Balmain, Birchgrove and Rozelle. The Roseville sales included:

  • 72 Lord Street – $1.68 million
  • 69 Park Avenue – $1.625 million
  • 20 Park Avenue – $1.039 million
  • 28 Waratah Street – $1.435 million
  • 74 William Street – $1.758 million
  • 130A Archer Street – $2.11 million
  • 43 Victoria Street – $1.7 million
  • 36 Trafalgar Avenue – $2.9 million.

The equal second place getters also surpassed the 17 recorded sales in Mosman which included a hefty $3.05 million for a semi at 2A Wolseley Road, Mosman and $2.88 million for 44 Rangers Avenue, Mosman.

Just how sustainable this turnover will prove in the remaining three months of 2010 will be an interesting test of strength at the top end of the Sydney residential market.