Investor snaps up Hobart’s historic National Mutual Life Building
ONE of Tasmania’s most impressive historic buildings has been sold for a seven-figure sum.
CoreLogic figures show No.119 Macquarie St, Hobart was sold in May for $9.9105 million.
This 1906-built building has not been on the market in decades and on hitting the market it attracted about 100 local, national and international inquiries through Knight Frank’s five-week sale campaign.
Knight Frank commercial sales and leasing representative Hayden Peck said while could not reveal exactly who had bought the six-storey Neo-Gothic sandstone building, he could say it was purchased by an interstate-based investor.
“We had 95 direct inquiries and we received multiple cash offers,” he said.
“The property was sold to an interstate investor and our vendor was very happy with the outcome.
“There is no question that the desire for quality commercial assets in Hobart is still very strong.”
No.119 Macquarie St, known as National Mutual Life Building, measures some 2459sq m and is currently leased to nine commercial tenants — lawyers, solicitors, engineers, CCYP and financial planners among them.
The building has boasted near 100 per cent occupancy over the last decade and attracts an estimated net income in the hundreds of thousands annually.
Aptly compared to a “Bentley”, No.119 Macquarie is also home to a 560sq m two-storey penthouse.
The building was designed by noted Hobart-born architect Alan Cameron Walker.
Walker was born in 1865 and apprenticed under lauded Tasmanian architect Henry Hunter.
Walker is known for designing the former state library Carnegie Building, Hobart’s General Post Office and tower, the Springs Hotel (which was destroyed in the 1967 Black Tuesday fires) and Werndee, the home of three-time Premier of Tasmania Sir Neil Elliott Lewis.
Auction record set for single Hobart home at $2.5m
A SANDY BAY waterfront home has been sold at auction for a multimillion dollar figure and it set a record, too.
Seven registered bidders and about 70 onlookers turned out to see No.836a Sandy Bay Road put under the hammer at the weekend.
It was sold for $2.5 million to returned Tasmanian locals who had been living overseas.
Per Real Estate Institute of Tasmania records, this result was the city’s highest single residential home sale for a dwelling sold under the hammer. It eclipsed a recent $2.11m De Witt St auction, EIS Property consultant Edward McKay said.
The Sandy Bay auction attracted a mix of local, returning local and interstate buyers registered to bid.
Mr McKay said there was an energy to auction that compares to little else.
“You could feel it, a special vibe when you first walked in that felt like someone was definitely going to buy the property.
“The crowd seemed to be intrigued and excited by the process, and to see if the auction would work for such a fantastically positioned, beautifully designed yet unconventional home.”
The auction started at $1.6m and Mr McKay said it climbed upward in mostly $20,000 bids very quickly with two people pushing the action forward.
“There was a point where the phone bidder pulled out, but then another bidder joined the fray. He was from interstate, and he pushed it higher… but it was the original bidder who had started it off at $1.6m that came back in and closed it out at $2.5m.
“It was a great result. The owner Stephen Firth was initially speechless and then thrilled with the result.
“Mr Firth listened to the auction unfold from the upper level of the home.
“We had set a reserve the day before at $1.8m, he was ecstatic with the end result.
“Interestingly, people have been inspired by this campaign to consider an auction for their home sales.
“It has definitely given them some confidence that auctions can work well in the current Hobart market.
“Given the ongoing level of interest in our market, when it comes to auctions I believe we have only seen the tip of the iceberg.
“It would be smart for purchasers to prepare themselves to be auction-ready for the future.”
EIS also took a Lenah Valley home to auction at the weekend and it was sold for $945,000 to an interstate buyer.
The Suncrest Avenue house had been built in the late ‘50s by noted Tasmanian builder Noel Clarke for his own family.