If proof is needed that the current Auckland lockdown and Covid uncertainty hasn’t slowed down the property market, then a recent Wanaka sale says it all.
A dress-circle holiday home in what locals call ‘old Wanaka’ recently sold for $1.585m, a staggering $335,000 over a pre-auction offer and $935,000 over its rateable value. And the sale went ahead while its owners, locked down in Auckland, could only watch from afar.
Filled with character, the three-bed, two bath A-frame home boasts lake and mountain views, is a five-minute walk to the lakefront and a short drive to town. The current owners bought it as a holiday home in 2006, living there permanently for a while as their daughter went to school locally.
While not the most modern property on the Wanaka market, its appeal was obvious, with 9,494 views on online platforms and 90 groups through open homes.
The auction was brought forward thanks to a pre-auction offer of $1.25m which the owners were happy to accept.
Auctioneer Gavin Vize had his work cut out on auction day, with about 20 people in the room in addition to phone buyers. There were 15 registered bidders in the mix — three in the auction room and 12 bidding by phone. Bidders came from as far afield as Auckland, Hong Kong, Canterbury, Dunedin, Wellington, Queenstown and Wanaka, of which four were bidding sight unseen.
The property was instantly on the market thanks to the pre-auction offer, and 44 bids later it sold under the hammer to Dunedin buyers.
Listing agents Denise Barr and Phil Wilson said there was a palpable sense of excitement in the auction room. “Even when buyers on the phone were ‘out’ of the bidding process they wanted to stay and hear the outcome as it was very exciting,” said Denise.
While delighted with the sale it’s bittersweet for the Auckland vendors who were hoping to attend the auction and see the property again before it passed on.
“While we would have loved to be there, we’re absolutely delighted with the auction outcome and there’s no doubt in our minds that Denise and Phil went that extra mile to get the job done. It was a superb effort.”
Harcourts Wanaka manager Grant Parker said he and his agents had developed some “ingenious” ways to market property around the country and then help buyers interested in undertaking due diligence who were in lockdown and unable to view the property in person.
“It starts with great photos, an agent-fronted video and the use of a 3D walkthrough enabling out-of-town buyers to get a good feel for the property, and we offer virtual walk throughs too,” he said.
“The demand for well-positioned, well-presented property in Wanaka continues to provide sellers with very respectable results and in many cases, when well marketed, the results are exceptional.
“The outstanding Wanaka lifestyle is often regarded as enviable, many buyers entering the market firmly believe we’re not at the top of the market and the medium-term forecast for the area is positive.
“Therefore they’re more than willing to compete to secure their piece of it. This property was simply a gem, the quintessential alpine getaway that a vast demographic of buyers would be happy to have as their home, holiday home or in their property portfolio.
“The sellers were presented with a pre-auction offer and there’s some comfort for sellers entering into the auction to know the property in principle is sold, so they don’t need to think about setting a reserve price.
“Right now in this current environment, putting an estimated selling price on a property is challenging, so that’s where trusting your agent and their suggested process can provide successful outcomes.
“Harcourts has leading digital platforms which when coupled with our transparent methods of sale and fair procedures helps sellers reach more buyers and achieve better results.”
The Harcourts Wanaka team is continuing to work with a number of buyers remaining from this campaign who are still looking to buy a property before Christmas.