An early $90,000 knockout bid failed to derail a five-bidder battle at a rainy-day auction in Mill Park yesterday.
The sale should serve as a warning to wait-and-see buyers hoping for further price drops, the auctioneer said.
While a deluge from above forced the auction into the garage of 15 Homestead Place, it quickly started raining bids with five bidders among the sizeable crowd huddled inside.
The $730,000 opening offer was well below the home’s $780,000-$858,000 asking price.
An attempted $90,000 knockout bid pushed the price to $900,000, but another six bids were required to get the home on the market at $910,000.
A further 30 bids eventually brought up the $969,000 sale price.
Vendors Chris and Naomi Elliott said they were more than happy with the result — though they were worried until the knockout bid was made.
“That got it to where we thought it might start, so it was good to get,” Mr Elliott said.
The pair sold the four-bedroom, double-storey house on a 673sq m block to fund a downsize.
They were happy with their timing, making the most of an interest rate cut earlier in the month, with another on the cards for next week.
The buyer, a local family, outbid another family looking to relocate from Melbourne’s inner city to a larger home in the suburbs.
Harcourts Rata & Co auctioneer Robert Ozzimo said “it’s been a while” since he had seen a knockout bid worth $90,000.
“My confidence in the market has been building for the last couple of weeks, but I was very happy to see it (the knockout bid),” Mr Ozzimo said.
“For Mill Park, this is the upper end of the market, and it’s been the hardest hit in the market correction. So to see it performing well adds to my confidence.”
But the sale was a warning to homebuyers who had been waiting to enter the market.
“The message to buyers is that the time is now, because the confidence will just keep growing,” Mr Ozzimo said.
“The market is heading up now.”
Sellers too should be thinking of getting in ahead of spring.
“I think there will be a lot of property on the market in spring,” Mr Ozzimo said.
“There will be enough demand for it, but if I was a vendor I’d rather sell with less competition (from other sellers).”
Listing agent Justin Sciola said the property had attracted 95 groups through its open for inspections and he had sent about 30 copies of the contract to prospective buyers.