A 1950s era Newtown home has smashed its auction reserve by $735,000 as five bidders went toe to toe for the rare opportunity to secure the property.
But the buyers had such an emotional attachment to the 975sq m property at 19 Layton Cres that it seemed nothing was going to stand in their way of putting their name on the contract.
The two-storey home near Geelong College Junior School sold for $2.535m under the hammer.
Bidding opened at $1.69m and Buxton, Newtown auctioneer Tom Butters called the property on the market when the price hit $1.8m.
The competition was so hot that the contest didn’t slow down until the price reached $2.49m.
At that point, the eventual underbidders restarted the bidding with a $1000 bid, only to spark another round of $5000 bids, adding almost $50,000 to the sale price.
The successful buyers should have expected the competition, as they bought the neighbouring home at a similarly hot auction 18 months ago and are in the process of renovating it for their son.
They paused several times to take stock of proceedings, While the husband, who was bidding, seemed resolute, his wife was clearly feeling the enormity of the stakes.
“The whole point of us being here it to be near Noah,” she said after the auction.
“I didn’t realise we’d have to go as high as we did, but you can’t put a price on that.
“We’ll probably do a bit of work to it at some stage. I don’t think we’ll knock it down, I think we can work with what is there.”
The family is relocating from Melbourne.
“Noah has a job down in Geelong, he’s moved his life down here so we’re renovating that and we’ll move in next door,” her husband said.
The two-storey 1950s era house has four bedrooms, two bathrooms and two living areas.
Outside, a side driveway lead to a double garage, while the backyard offered a pool, a covered outdoor entertainment area and a separate spa house with an ensuite bathroom.
It’s the first time the house has changed hands in 40 years, underlining the street’s tightly-held nature.
Mr Butters alluded to the fact the last two properties he’s sold in the street were after the owners had died.
“If you sell here, it’s not by choice,” Mr Butters told the crowd.
“I don’t want to sound morbid, but I did sell next door 18 months ago and with this one, nature has taken its course and we are moving on.”
With Geelong College junior and middle schools are across the road at the end of the street, and the senior campus within walking distance, Mr Butters said many buyers were young families.
“That was land value, amazingly,” he said.
Newtown is Geelong’s most prestigious suburb where the median house price is $1.21m, and the residential land rate is expected to be at least $2000 per square metre.
“The other people were investors, looking to renovate or buy a family home,” he said.