- Sellers of sought-after homes in affluent Sydney suburbs are making strong price gains, despite the market downturn.
- A Mosman trophy home that sold for almost $20 million is among recent sales.
- Every seller in the Mosman and Hunters Hill regions sold for a profit last quarter.
Mosman is escaping the worst of Sydney’s property downturn, scoring a trophy home sale of almost $20 million this week and a string of profitable sales last quarter.
The Queen Anne Federation mansion sold this week for the first time in over three decades, trading for more than seven times its 1990 sale price of $2,625,000 – a record auction result at the time.
While Mosman has not been spared from the property downturn, it is one of two Sydney local government areas – along with Hunters Hill – where every home owner that resold made a profit last quarter despite market headwinds, CoreLogic figures show.
The northern beaches was not far behind, as almost 99 per cent of sellers made a profit.
CoreLogic research director Tim Lawless said the vast majority of Sydney sellers – more than 91 per cent – were still making a gain on their home, but loss-making sales were becoming more common, particular in higher density markets.
The analysis only included property sales from the December quarter, for which a previous sale price was recorded. It found often higher levels of profitability for very long-term owners, but a shift in the opportunity for short-term gains.
Lawless said Mosman, Hunters Hill and the northern beaches were outperforming the broader market, as they were high-demand areas where prices were still above pre-pandemic levels, despite recent declines. Their growth over a five-year period was above the 8.1 per cent increase in prices citywide.
“They are also markets that have inherent scarcity associated with them … they are established areas with not a lot of opportunity to bring in new supply, especially for houses,” Lawless said.
Homeowners in affluent markets were also more likely to be well established on the property ladder, and be higher income earners who were less likely to be forced to sell, he said.
“People who were may be considering selling are holding off … but you’d have to expect that gradually, as people who bought in and around the peak look to sell, we may not see such a high rate of profit-making resales.”
The typical home sold in Mosman last quarter was owned for just shy of 11 years and made a profit of $436,000, median data shows. Northern beaches homeowners sold after 10 years, netting a median profit of $527,500. Hunters Hill had too few sales to calculate these medians.
A Queen Anne Federation mansion in Mosman sold for almost $20 million this week. It last sold in 1990.
In Mosman, the federation mansion Urunga, built in 1901, sold through Atlas Lower North Shore’s Anthony Godson, who had a $19 million price guide on the 2700 square metre estate owned by antique collector Edmund Braude.
It was first listed in March 2022 with a $25 million price guide by another agent, but relisted with a guide of $19 million last August when Godson first introduced the local buyer to it.
Godson said homes were taking longer to sell, as buyers had been waiting for more properties in their range to hit the market.
“That’s not happened, so they’re circling back to what is on offer,” he said, adding an almost 40 per cent drop in homes for sale had resulted in increased competition on quality trophy homes.
“We are dealing with more buyers with budgets of more than $30 million than we’ve ever had… pent-up demand is creating a level of frustration and that shows itself in bullish prices, but only on the right sort of properties.”
Adrian Bridges, also from Atlas, said the Mosman market had softened between May and November, as interest rates climbed, but that buyer confidence had returned.
A five-bedroom Mosman house sold for $7.75 million last month, which was $400,000 more than it traded for in March 2021. Credit:Pello Lower North Shore
“A suburb like Mosman never stays down for long,” he said. “Even if you bought at the peak or overpaid … holding out for a year may make up that difference. A loss is only a loss once you realise and people [here] can afford to hold on [to their property].”
Strong long-term price growth and longer hold times for properties — due to the area’s desirability and the high stamp duty cost associated with moving — were key to high volumes of profit-making resales, Bridges said.
One three-bedroom Mosman house on Wyong Road sold for $4.1 million last month. It previously traded for $2,475,000 in late 2015.
In Hunters Hill, BresicWhitney’s Nicholas McEvoy, said most homes traded last quarter had been owned for a minimum of five years.
“[Last quarter] there was also no stock to choose from, limited supply, which is still the case, and that [helped prices] because there was less for everyone to look at,” McEvoy said.
Trophy homes in the market were doing particularly well.
“The higher end of the market has really held up, but the waterfront market is in a league of its own, I don’t think it’s really come back at all … when you’ve got something rare, it just goes up in value,” he said.
Profit-making sales, however, could be more hit-and-miss for those selling units, he noted. While units recorded milder price declines, they also had smaller gains in the boom.
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