Off-The-Plan Goes Off: Bondi Apartments

Posted in Wealth
14/08/2013 Level One

This is an article in the Australian Financial Review, published on 12 August 2013 written by Robert Harley.

In five hours on Saturday, Sydney property developer Legacy Property sold 90 off-the-plan apartments at the opening of a new tower in Bondi Junction.

Legacy’s team of 50 lawyers and agents made a sale every four minutes.

Director Matthew Hyder said the stars were aligned.

“We have had four weeks of auction clearances over 80 per cent and an interest rate cut,” he said.

But even he was surprised.

“I would have been happy with 60 sales,” he said.

Instead Legacy has only three apartments still to sell.

Australia’s housing market has been improving since a nadir in May 2012.

Since then, capital city values have improved 6.5 per cent, according to real estate analysts RP Data and Rismark.

One listed developer, the Australand Property Group, reported a solid increase in sales for new apartments and land in the six months to June.

UBS analyst Jonathan Mott said record low mortgage rates set the scene for “another bout of sustained house price inflation in Australia, and Sydney in particular”.

However, not everyone agrees.

National Australia Bank chief economist Alan Oster said consumer confidence was still the main challenge facing property.

But several off-the-plan offerings have sold at boom-time pace.

Developer Urban Inc sold all bar 28 of the 233 apartments in an inner-city project in Melbourne before its launch on Saturday.

Some of the strongest results have come from Sydney’s east. The Pacific Bondi project has achieved the nation’s highest apartment price of $21 million.

The Legacy project, Capitol, is in Oxford Street, Bondi Junction, close to Westfield and the train station, with has views of the harbour.

Mr Hyder said it “ticks the boxes” for local investors who, through agents CBRE, make up most of the buyers.

But it is not cheap. Studio apartments start at $575,000, equivalent to the median price of a house in Sydney.

Buyers pay, on average, $14,500 per square metre and for the best, up to $17,500 per square metre.

Mr Hyder said supply was the issue.

“Waverley Council fought us tooth and nail over this project but the public are starved of stock,” he said.

“It’s not indicative of a functioning model.”


Get In Touch

We welcome you to contact us for more information
about our services.

Follow us