Oct 10, 2015
Kirsten Robb, Alistair Walsh
Developers pocketed more than $70 million in just 90 minutes in Glen Waverley on Saturday morning, as hundreds of buyers jostled inside a display suite for the chance to secure an off-the-plan apartment.
The crowd had already forked out $2500 per group just for the chance to be there, with potential buyers required to purchase a ‘golden ticket’ in order to get through the door.
The fee gave them the first option on the 267 apartments, which were priced from $385,000, but buyers had already begun to miss out on their first choice by 9am.
“I was hoping to get the top floor… facing the city – so going for the prime real estate – but someone had just jumped in before me so I missed that one,” first homebuyer Matthew Farrugia said. “I got the next one available on the side I wanted.”
Mr Farrugia had rushed down to the suite after agents rang him to tell him things were moving fast.
“I wasn’t expecting a phone call at eight o’clock in the morning saying, ‘get here before they are all sold’,” he said. “I’ve been looking for a while, so I feel like it’s a dream come true.”
Around $42 million – or more than $2 million a minute – changed hands in the first 20 minutes, according to Castran Real Estate agents. They had signed contracts on 58 of the ‘Galleria’ apartments by 9am and by 10am, 107 apartments had sold stickers.
Agent John Castran said the ‘golden tickets’ provided some sense of order among the chaos, after neighbouring apartment tower The Icon sold out eight hours and left buyers disappointed. Several buyers said they had paid the fee after they missed out on The Icon.
“If a person walks in off the street, they are not entitled to come in today,” Mr Castran said. “Only the people who are confirmed, they get their name ticked off the list – $2500? And then they can come in.”
He said the fee is either refunded or deducted from a buyer’s deposit.
Both investors and owner-occupiers referenced Glen Waverley’s extraordinary price growth when asked what drew them to the O’Sullivan Road development.
“[We wanted] to come and invest in something we believe is going to have a good return for us,” said investor Penno Huseinovski. “It is a perfect area, looking at the market prices.”
The 15-level apartment tower, which will be the tallest in the suburb, is metres from The Glen shopping centre and Glen Waverley Secondary College, one of the state’s top performing public schools.
But Mr Castran said buyers who wanted to cash in on the school’s zoning would need to bump their purchase up to a two bedroom apartment, because the school would not accept families registered at a one bedroom property.
The agents will continue to host appointments for those with a ticket through the weekend, until the remaining few become available to “general admission” next week.
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