Australia

Hoarder house sells for over $3m

The walls were rotting and the musky interior was dishevelled and caked in grime – but a former hoarder’s home in the inner west still changed hands for more than $3.41 million at auction this weekend.

It was a result that left onlookers stunned considering the Concord home was uninhabitable: bags of garbage were piled in the front rooms and the yard was strewn with car batteries, loose pipes and other junk.

Cleaners had come in weeks before the auction to clear up much of the mess but inside there were still stacks of outdated TVs, boxes, filing cabinets buried under cobwebs and a pile of loose doors.

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Selling agent Ben Horwood of Horwood Nolan said the mess was “mild” compared to how it had been.

“The house is not going to fall over, but it is also well beyond repair,” he said.

The property had been hidden from the outside world for years behind overgrown trees and bushes, Mr Horwood added.

“The bush was so thick you would never have known what the house looked like,” he said.

Eleven bidders registered for the auction of the deceased estate on Tennyson Rd, including a mix of local families and builders.

Mr Horwood said the appeal of the property was in the block size, which at 1081 sqm offered the potential for duplex development.

Strong interest in the lead up to the auction encouraged the sellers to set an ambitious reserve of $3.2 million. The guide was $3 million.

“It was a rare home. There aren’t many blocks this size in Concord any more but the price was unexpected,” Mr Horwood said.

Auctioneer Damien Cooley received an opening bid of $2.5 million and the offers went up in $100,000 increments for most the auction. Four of the registered buyers raised their cards to bid.

“The house was a mess and that would have put some people off but others like the (chance) to add value so these types of auctions can be hot,” Mr Cooley said.

“The condition would have been no deterrent for developers who would bulldoze the house anyway.”

The buyer told the Sunday Telegraph he never even went inside.

“I didn’t want to see it, I didn’t care about the house,” he said, adding he wanted the land to build a new house as an investment for his family.

He will be consulting with architects and council about what he can do with the site.

Not much is known about the former hoarder owner who was reported to have purchased the property in the 1980s.

The home was one of 742 auctions held across Sydney this week, an increase from the 704 auctions held last week.

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