Geelong auctions to beat deadline

Real estate agents have brought forward several auctions to Wednesday night to beat Stage 3 coronavirus restrictions that come in to force at midnight.

Three properties in Belmont and Highton will go under the hammer at in-­person auctions this evening.

Under Stage 3 restrictions, auctions can only be conducted remotely — an option other agents have also chosen this weekend.

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Property inspections can only take place by private appointment under the rules.

However, it seems Melbourne buyers can no longer travel to Geelong to inspect a property under Stage 4 restrictions enforced in the capital city.

News Corp is seeking clarification from the state government on this point.

But buyers have already been turned around at police checkpoints while travelling to property inspections scheduled in Geelong this week.

Buxton, Highton agent Tony Moorfoot said auctions at 17 Brocka Ave, Belmont and 2 Desmond St, Highton, were both being auctioned on site at 5.45pm.

“We thought before the restrictions start, we can call the auctions on site,” Mr Moorfoot said.

“We can get the actual buyers together so we can still create the same conditions and ambience of the auction.”

Buxton agent David Gray said five buyers had registered to bid for 17 Brocka Avenue.

He said one Melbourne party would have a Geelong-based parent bid on their behalf.

Barry Plant, Highton agent Matthew Constantine said bringing the auctions forward was a smart move.

Mr Constantine said 110 groups had been through the property at 10 Emerald Court, Belmont in three weeks. It goes to auction at 7pm.

“It’s been immensely popular. I think it will be best for the buyers,” he said.

“They get a sense of the competition, it puts people at ease.”

“We thought before the restrictions start we can call with auction on site,” Mr Moorfoot said.

“We can get the actual buyers together so we can still create the same conditions and ambience of the auction.”

Other agents have moved scheduled auctions online this weekend.

Mr Moorfoot said vendors and agents would decide whether to convert campaigns already under way to a private sale or continue with an online auction.

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