A property on a quarter-acre section in Otara that failed to attract a visitor at its first open home has sold for $605,000.
The Herald can now reveal the sale price of 13 Sandbrook Ave after the real estate agents refused to say how much it sold for at the time, citing buyer and seller confidentiality, before it was publicly available.
The five-bedroom, two-bathroom bungalow was the subject of a column by the Herald on Sunday's Heather du Plessis-Allan, who wrote that the location was putting off potential buyers despite a "bargain" asking price around $600,000.
On the market for three weeks and the first open home was a flop, with no one walking through the door.
After the media coverage, the 1158sq m property, drew five groups at the next open home. Two buyers made offers and it was sold to an investor three weeks after it was listed.
Barfoot & Thompson marketing agent Mohit Takyar, who acted for the new owners said investors and first home buyers were being attracted to Otara as it was one of the more affordable areas in Auckland.
The new owners had purchased it as a long-term investment and kept the existing tenants.
"This turned out to be a good buy for my client and they are very happy with this buy," Takyar said.
"At this point looking at the way the Auckland market is going this looks to be a really affordable area for people who are looking in the $600,000s and below and has the potential for more growth."
With fewer houses being sold by auction compared to other Auckland areas, there was more opportunity for first home buyers who were intimidated by the bidding process or were conditional buyers, he said.
Houses in Otara listed on Realestate.co.nz range from $479,000 for a three bedroom do-up to $689,000 for a three-bedroom home with a separate three-bedroom dwelling.
Properties were being sold be auction, deadline treaty, by negotiation and fixed price.
Ray White marketing agent Tom Rawson, who specialises in South Auckland, said the majority of people buying in Otara were investors as the rent was higher, while first home buyers seemed to prefer Papakura.
A property at 60 Gilbert Rd in Otara just sold for $540,000 - $1000 over the asking price.
There were about 4500 homes in Otara and 3000 of them were owned by Housing New Zealand, 1000 by investors and 500 were owner-occupied, he said.
"First home buyers seem to be a bit fussy and don't want to live in that area."
The western side of Otara bordering Papatoetoe and the eastern side bordering Dannemora were the most popular.
House prices in Otara generally ranged between $500,000 and $600,000.