Melbourne weekend auctions break April records

Melbourne weekend auctions break April records
Melbourne weekend auctions break April records

Melbourne's auction market saw around 1260 auctions on Saturday which, Domain economist Dr Andrew Wilson noted, exceeded the previous record for any April weekend.

Melbourne reported a strong 74 percent clearance rate, the same as Sydney which hosted its second busiest Saturday so far this year.

But the dead heat between the two auction capitals was of limited interest with media attention on more horrendous matters.

In Melbourne it was the missing millions after six LJ Hooker offices were closed by Victorian Consumer Affairs given trust account irregularities.

And in Sydney it was the listing of the former home of the backpacker killer, Ivan Milat.

It was the Eagle Vale home at the time of his 1994 arrest, in quiet Cinnabar St (above).

The four bedroom brick home with the dark past last sold in 2006 at $386,000.

Ivan Milat bought in 1992 with his sister Shirley Soire for $50,000, with the siblings selling it in 1995 at $160,000.

It is now priced at $685,000 to $715,000 through Century 21 Premier Reality agent Susan Parkes who told The Sunday Telegraph that prospective buyer feedback was that “it’s a lovely home."

In 1996 Milat was convicted of the murders of seven backpackers after their bodies were found in the Belangalo State Forest, near Berrima in 1992 and 1993, and is serving seven consecutive life sentences in Goulburn super-maximum security prison.

There's already talk of jail after millions in deposits are claimed to have gone missing from the trust accounts of six LJ Hooker offices in outer Melbourne. 

There have been varied counter claims of a hacking or an elaborate conspiracy, but it appears no-one is giving them much credence.

Consumer Affairs Minister Jane Garrett said those responsible would feel the full force of the law.

"This is horrendous behaviour," Ms Garrett told reporters on Saturday.

"We changed the locks on these offices as soon as we found out irregularities had occurred."

Some 20 homeowners, along with 80 rental tenants, are caught up in the matter after irregularities were found in a LJ Hooker franchise in Glen Waverley and its associated branches in Keysborough, Mount Waverley, Burwood, Doncaster and Box Hill.

The branches are operated by husband-and-wife, Joseph Ngo and Judy Thanh Truc (also known as Judy Nguyen), who were named LJ Hooker’s Best Team of the Year in 2015.

“Houses around Melbourne, and certainly in these areas, are very expensive,” Ms Garrett said.

Ms Garrett said anyone found to have misused trust money could face very significant charges and jail time.

“We take an absolute zero-tolerance approach to this,” she said.

“This is other people’s money. Like lawyers you hold it on trust … [if you] abuse that trust, you’ll feel the full force of the law.”

CoreLogic RP Data reported Melbourne was host to 1,272 auctions, making it the busiest of any of the capital city markets for auctions by a long run.

The preliminary clearance rate for the city was 74 per cent this week.

There were around 800 Sydney auctions.

Preliminary results for Brisbane show a 49 per cent clearance rate.

The number of Adelaide auctions rose to 129 this week, with agents securing a 64 per cent success.

Perth's clearance rate was 46 per cent. Canberra’s clearance rate fell from 73 per cent last week to 67 per cent. 

The national result sits at 71 per cent, up marginally from a final auction clearance rate of 69 per cent last week, but lower when compared to one year ago at 78 per cent.

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of our authors. Jonathan has been writing about property since the early 1980s and is editor-at-large of Property Observer.

Auctions Residential Sales


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