Property developer Gurner has managed to sell 97 per cent of their Albert Place Residences development in less than two weeks.
The Albert Place Residences, designed by architects Elenberg Fraser with interiors by David Hicks Design, launched to the market with 160 residences, however due to the high volume of apartment amalgamations from down-sizers, the final number of residences is now 140.
The layout generates eight half-floor residences all worth between $4.5 million - $5.5 million and an average per-dwelling price of well over $1 million.
New Gurner Project Gives Melbourne A Taste Of The Big Apple]Gurner will also release the project's final two penthouse residences that were initially held off the market in order to satiate this overwhelming demand, which has been fuelled largely by down-sizers and local owner occupiers.
Gurner Director Tim Gurner said Albert Place aimed to test the scale and breadth of the down-sizer market, with over a third of the residences designed as three bedroom offerings.
“We took a calculated risk and designed around a third of the floorplans as three bedroom offerings," he said.
"Given the sheer number of larger residences created within the project that have a higher price-point, I was initially nervous however, the decision has paid off in spades with all of these particular offerings selling to local owner occupiers.
“Interestingly, about 50% of down-sizers were moving from suburbs [like] Toorak and South Yarra, and the other half were relocating from St Kilda Road buildings like Royal Domain, The Melburnian and St James,” he said.
Gurner said he believes the down-sizer market demand has not yet peaked, with plenty more movement from the cashed-up owner occupier market expected in the next 18 months and beyond.
“People have been talking about the down-sizer market for years and I never believed it as we were not seeing it on the ground, however the last 12 months has completely flipped the apartment market demographic on its head and we are now seeing unprecedented interest from this market segment in particular.
“This demand has been fuelled by a number of factors, not least of which is the amazing rise in house prices which has seen many homes in Toorak, South Yarra and Albert Park literally double in value in the past three to four years.
“Houses that were worth $3 million - $8 million in these suburbs are now worth $6 million - $15 million and this means wealthy down-sizers have $6 million to play with now rather than $3 million from the sale of their family home, which has allowed them to purchase a luxury penthouse and a sea or tree-change holiday home for retirement as well.”
Gurner appointed Crema Construction to build the project, with demolition set to commence in August this year. Completion is currently slated for late 2019.
The construction contract is rumoured to be worth approximately $55 million.