The sellers of a weatherboard house in Western Sydney got a welcome surprise when a crowd of more than 100 people arrived at their auction, with nearly a fifth registering to bid.
Included in the crowd gathered for the auction of the Wentworthville house were a whopping 19 registered bidders.
Six months ago the average auction would have attracted two to three bidders, records showed.
With so much interest in the four-bedroom home on a 690sqm block, the auction turned into a frenzy of bidding activity and the hammer eventually dropped at $1.4 million — $350,000 over the reserve.
Auctioneer Michael Garofolo of Cooley Auctions said the auction for the house on Haig St was “pandemonium”.
“It was a monster crowd … the paddles were flying everywhere. There were so many bids it was difficult to keep up,” Mr Garofolo said.
“We had five people working the floor to make sure all the bids were heard, they just kept coming in. It was so fast.”
The opening bid was $750,000 and most of the bidders stayed in contention for the property until about $1.3 million, he said.
Selling agent Alan Fowler of Laing and Simmons-Wentworthville said the sales price caught him by surprise.
Market feedback had suggested the home would sell for anywhere between $1 million and $1.1 million, he said.
“I’m still in shock a bit,” Mr Fowler said. “I can understand why it sold at that, there’s a shortage of stock, but it wasn’t what we expected.
“If this had sold in 2017, when the market was at its peak, we would have got less.”
Part of what was surprising about the sale was that a similar block on the same street had gone to auction the same morning, selling for $1.29 million.
“It was the same buyers at each of the auctions, many of them walked from the one to the other,” Mr Garofolo said. “There may have been a fear of missing out.”
Mr Garofolo added that properties with building potential in Western Sydney had been highly sought after over recent weeks.
“I suspect it’s builders land banking,” he said. “They’re holding onto properties with development potential till there’s another boom.”
In the Hills District, a dozen buyers turned up to register for the auction of a four-bedroom house in Kellyville and the strong interest also drove the price way above expectation.
The house on a larger-than-average 683sqm block on Castlefern Court sold under the hammer for $1.33 million, beating the reserve price by $130,000.
Selling agent Corie Sciberras of The Avenue Real Estate said the home was a big draw for younger families.
Close to 130 groups came to inspect it in the lead up to the auction and buyer competition was “stiff”, he said.
“There are very few single level homes available in the area and there is are a lot more buyers because of the new (Sydney Metro Northwest) train line,” Mr Sciberras said.
The opening bid was $1 million and half the registered bidders submitted offers.