1930s house 'like walking through a museum'

By Patrick O'Sullivan -
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Harcourts agent Bill Tawhai said entering the vacant home on 35 Milton Rd was like "walking onto a movie set".

"Just going through the place was like going through a museum - I'd never seen anything like it," Mr Tawhai said.

He said the family of the 87-year-old owner, who was now residing in a rest home, had contacted him to sell the property which, apart from taking up a large slice of the roadside, was also wildly overgrown.

Family members had spent several days there sorting and clearing their way from room to room and decided in the long run to sell it all, as it is.

"There are newspapers going back to 1960 and a lot of old books - he was an engineer, a technical man, so plenty of those."

There were also original old ovens and refrigerators which despite being 50 years old were in excellent condition.

Mr Tawhai said in one "granny flat" attachment to the property there was a kitchen with an oven from the 1940s which "looks like new".

He said it was a first for him as he had never encountered anything else like it during his sales career.

And under all the undergrowth he said the bodywork of the 1930s house was in very good condition.

"A very solid home for that era."

At auction yesterday it was billed as the worst house on the best street and sold for $240,000 with spirited bidding.

With three bedrooms and a self-contained flat, it has the potential to be worth $800 per week if some of the garaging for five vehicles was also rented.

The home of an elderly man who lived in the 1930s house since the 1950s, Harcourts auctioneer Kim Shannon described the overgrown home as having "well-established plantings" and original features.

With a bit of "graft" it could be "your Hilton on Milton".

The owner's nephew, David Stewart, said it was time for his unwell uncle to move to less-demanding accommodation.

"He kept the place really clean - he just collected a lot of stuff," he said.

"It's mostly books - he was a book enthusiast. We have taken a lot of the nice books out but we couldn't get everything."

New owner Dennis Smith said his uncle was welcome to remove further possessions. Mr Smith already lives on Milton Rd and plans to renovate and then live in the house himself.

An experienced investor and renovator - he said he had renovated about 30 - he will do the work himself for an estimated $50,000 on the "solid old thing".

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