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Buyer’s agents making their mark on prestige market

A stunning $400 million worth of “double digit” sales took place in the last quarter of 2018 in what was a remarkable movement of high end real estate.

Despite home values across Sydney taking a hit in recent months, there was a flurry of activity on the trophy home circuit which saw dozens of properties sell for between $10 million and $40 million.

The domino effect of dwellings transacting was sparked by the incredible $100 million sale in September of Fairwater in Point Piper, plus a drying up of foreign buyers.

Mark Cadry, buyer’s agent from BuyEast, said that going into 2019 there is now more wriggle room for price negotiations — even in the top end.

“We feel the market is at a fantastic place. Vendors over the past five years were wanting 10 per cent to 20 per cent more, regardless of what was going on with the market. It was a struggle for us to keep up with our clients’ price expectations,” he said.

Today, Mr Cadry said buyer’s agents were able to negotiate a lot harder.

“We’ve naturally seen an increase in client inquiry since the market softened up a bit,” he said.

“It’s a great time to upgrade,” he said.

However, Mr Cadry added this perfect storm will not last forever.

“If lending becomes a little bit more relaxed, this market can spring back up again just as easily as it did before this softening happened. So we’re really balancing between the market going down further and the market going back up.

In three months’ time people may be kicking themselves going ‘Wow I missed that opportunity when it was softer.’”

Simon Cohen, a founder of buyer’s agency Cohen Handler, said he also believed the increased volume of high priced homes on the market was due to the snowball effect of a cooler marketplace.

“There are so many top end buyers and typically so little top end good quality stock. So it’s been really refreshing to see these beautiful homes coming up; that coupled with the fact that there have been realistic sellers out there.”

Mr Cohen, whose firm secured 1A Loch Maree Pl, Vaucluse for $29.5 million and made the $15.25 million exchange of 8 Pacific St, Watsons Bay last year, said cashed up buyers are seeing opportunities to snag a trophy home that may have been considered too pricey one or two years ago.

“We’ve always been able to get good prices for our clients, but in the current market what we’re finding is that sellers are starting at more realistic prices — and that’s great news for buyers,” he said.

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