Belfast Telegraph

£250,000 house sold for third of the price

By Kerry McKittrick

A family home once valued at a quarter of a million pounds sold for a song at £81,000 yesterday.



The modern four-bedroomed house in Lisnaskea was just one of 23 lots offered for sale at Osborne King's second public property auction in Belfast.

Sales of this type are becoming more common as real estate agents seek to kick-start the property market

It was certainly the place to be for anyone on the hunt for a bricks and mortar bargain.

A four-acre strip of land with planning permission for 38 homes in Castlecaulfield, Co Tyrone, just about made its reserve price of £100,000.

At the height of the property boom the same plot was valued at £1m.

First-time buyers jostled with serious property developers, all interested in grabbing a bargain at the sale in the Holiday Inn on Ormeau Avenue.

Although this was only the second auction of its kind so far, it’s clear this is a popular means of buying and selling property as there was standing room only by the time the sale began.

There was something for everyone at the event from residential homes to nightclubs to plots of land complete with existing foundations and planning permission.

The sale was speedy, lasting little more than an hour, and those interested in the residential market appeared to grab the best bargains.

A two-bedroomed house in Parker Street, east Belfast, was purchased for £39,000 and a four-bedroomed terrace house in Portadown went for the knock-down price of £41,000.

Both had been recently modernised.

For those seeking a return on their investment a site in Cloughmills sold for just £15,000.

That lucky buyer received a plot with planning permission for a five-bedroomed house with foundations already in place.

The hottest property of the day was immediately apparent as the noise level of the crowd rose significantly when the lot came up for sale — a set of agricultural buildings and lands at Ivy Hill, Lisburn.

Although bidding started at a mere £70,000 the lands sold for £131,000 — £56,000 above the reserve price.

Not everything sold at the auction, though — three properties failed to make their reserve prices and were withdrawn from sale; office space on the Antrim Road, Savages Bar & Nightclub in Castlewellan and an office block in Carrickfergus.

Overall, Osborne King reported a success rate of 87% on the day and auctioneer John Martin was upbeat about the results.

“It shows there is still some confidence in the property market,” he explained.

“If people are prepared to be digging deep to buy property a couple of weeks before Christmas then it's a very encouraging sign,” he said.

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