Home' API Magazine : December 2014 Contents 84 n APIMAGAZINE.COM.AU n DECEMBER 2014
“It has opened up the area to
people who previously didn’t want to
He suspects the biggest difference
is that it takes about an hour and
15 minutes to drive to the CBD, but it
should be much easier and quicker for
commuters to go via train, once the line
is established. On top of that, the market
is absolutely crazy.
“There have been some ridiculous
prices being paid for property,” he says.
“Two years ago we sold a house for
$770,000. We’re exchanging the exact
same property today for $1.1 million.”
It’s an unbelievable result for the seller
yet we’ve all read about these sorts of
results for months now.
It’s no longer out of the ordinary to
see huge jumps in prices within months,
even weeks, and sometimes just days.
Areas around where the new train
stations will be placed in Kellyville,
Bella Vista and Showground have
had the “double whammy”, according
On the one hand, they’ve experienced
the phenomenal property boom. On
the other hand, homeowners there
have also been sitting on gold mines,
as large blocks of land are rezoned.
Godfrey explains many of these houses
are on 1000 square metres and so at
the moment there’s fierce competition
For example, this time last year, a
property was put on the market for
offers over $950,000 and sold for
At the time, agents were calling
Godfrey, asking if the sale price was a
joke. But now, that would be considered
a good buy.
Properties in another street, known
as Partridge Avenue, are selling for
ridiculous prices. This street is near
Showground station and has undergone
“We sold one in this street for
$1.26 million and that was a massive
result, massive,” Godfrey says.
“Two weeks later another house a
few doors down sold for $1.47 million.
Someone paid another $200,000!”
Although there’s still a lot of hype
about changes, and the potential to carve
up land, the height limits of Sydney’s
new growth spots still haven’t been
established. The Urban Taskforce would
like to see at least 20-storey buildings
along the railway corridor.
However, House Search Australia
buyers’ agent Jacque Parker isn’t so
sure about 20-storey towers in some of
She says progress is inevitable and
even needed, but such huge buildings
may not be suited everywhere, such as
“Kellyville isn’t as built-up as Castle
Hill,” she says.
“And the Norwest Business Park
already has towers. You only have
to look at this park to see what a
well-planned development looks like.
But if Hills Shire, Blacktown and
Hornsby can work together, they’ll
achieve a more positive outcome.”
Sam Stuart* is banking on land in Castle Hill
The 41-year-old just paid a massive
$1.385 million for a four-bedroom property
on 900 square metres in one of the streets
about to be rezoned right near the future
Having already missed numerous
properties before his latest purchase, the
frustrated IT specialist admits he was
actually prepared to pay up to $1.5 million
on the day of auction, just to get the deal
over the line.
“I’m okay with the property but I think the
land is more important, because it’s within
the study area and future rezoning area,”
“It’s higher than I wanted to pay, but
potentially I also would’ve gone a bit higher.”
In many ways, it’s a bit like trying to buy
a golden ticket. Sam admits much of the
purchase came down to speculation and
hoping that a developer might knock on
his door down the track. He plans to hold
the property for four to five years and
suspects by that time land prices around
Castle Hill and Showground will be even
While property in this area doesn’t come
cheap, the rental yield isn’t that great. The
property is renting for just $650 per week;
although Sam hopes to increase the rent
once the current lease expires.
The big difference between the price he
paid and the rent means the property is
costing him about $1000 a week to hold.
Ouch! That hurts!
It seems like a lot but it’s a price Sam is
willing to pay, with expectations he will
make an even bigger profit later.
“I’m managing the cash flow because the
capital gain is the primary thing,” he says.
“I’ll hold for the long-term because of the
Sam has always loved
the Castle Hill area.
There are nice families,
big homes on good-
sized blocks and also
good amenities. He points out there’s an
RSL nearby, and Castle Hill Public School is
“not perfect but okay”.
Compared to the southwestern suburbs, it
has a better future, he says.
He also bought a principal place of
residence in Castle Hill last year, forking out
$945,000. Despite paying a high price at
the time, Sam suspects it would now be
worth at least 20 per cent more, probably
even close to $1.3 million.
It’s just a couple of streets away from his
latest purchase and properties in the area
are now all selling for at least $1 million,
“It has five bedrooms, four upstairs and
one downstairs. There’s one bedroom for
granny,” he says.
Asked whether he might rent this out, Sam
jokes he might have to down the track.
“I need the money,” he laughs.
With high buy-in prices, Sam suspects he
might lock in his loans soon, as he hates the
thought that interest rates might rise down
But he’s more than happy to focus on the
Castle Hill area – which he believes is the
future of Sydney.
“I always keep an eye out and anything
that comes out (in the news) I’m pretty
much the first one to know,” he says.
“I believe the northwest is part of the new
growth corridor. It used to be Parramatta but
now it’s Castle Hill.”
*Sam’s name has been changed for privacy
reasons by request.
Banking on land
Name: Sam Stuart*
Lives: Castle Hill
“We believe it’s important to get as
much density at possible, particularly
where there are major infrastructure
upgrades occurring,” Urban
Taskforce chief executive officer
Chris Johnson says.
“It would be a great shame if the
opportunity to get great development
there was missed. So we’re keen to make
sure the amount of development is as
strong as possible.”
He adds that parts of the community
are anti-development and won’t support
“We need to get people to at least
think boldly about towers, not just about
townhouses,” he says.
THE STATES n New South Wales
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