Archive for News

Archive for News

Gateway sites whet appetites

A PLAN to have 12,000 people living within Geelong’s central business district by 2030 has turned the spotlight on potential development sites.

Two near the northern gateway to the city centre have been listed with potential developers and owner-occupiers interested in the possibilities.

Gartland Property director Michael De Stefano said the opportunities were clear.

“They’re the gateway into the CBD and a stone’s throw to the water,” he said.

“There is a big mandate to create 12,000 people habitating within the Geelong CBD over the next seven or eight years, so we are going to see more of this type of product coming into the eyes of developers because there will be a big market for it.”

Development of the sites were part of creating a thriving and energetic CBD.

“The car yards are evaporating, so the future of that eastern side of Mercer St will be residential or mixed use development,” he said.

“You can see why. You basically head one street down and you’re at the water.

“Then you travel a little bit south and you’re in the dining precinct or the arts precinct.”

The precinct already has runs on the board, with a huge uptake for the Mercer and Miramar apartments projects, with further development planned for the former Winter & Taylor site. Between the two there was about 250 apartments that all sold prior to construction. It’s proven the appetite of the market is there,” Mr De Stefano said.

“And I think there’s further towers planned, based on a further demand.

“We’re talking 12,000 people by 2030, so the depth of the market has still got a substantial way to go.”

The first of the development sites is at 15 York St, at the corner of Mercer St.

The 846sq m site has an Activity Centre Zone and is next to a row of apartments and townhouses. Price hopes are low to mid $2m for the site.

The property has a month-by-month tenant.

“This will suit probably a mixed-use scenario with a little bit of showroom or office with apartments upstairs,” Mr De Stefano said.

Darcy Jarman, Newtown agent Tim Darcy said the key to a bigger 2022sq m site was five separate street frontages covering 165m.

The parcel comprises addresses at 5-11 Mercer St, 4 Sadler Place and 2-6 Ginn St, Geelong, with additional frontage to two rights-of-way.

It’s being offered by an expressions of interest campaign with vacant possession but based on recent residential land sales in the area, it could attract interest above $7m.

Mr Darcy said it provided an enormous amount of flexibility to any development scheme.

“It’s included within an activity centre zone, so there is a raft of different things that could suit, but probably the highest and best use would be for residential purposes,” Mr Darcy said.

The draft Central Geelong Framework Plan lists the preferred building height for the site at 21m, with a 16m street frontage, providing for between four and six storeys. It previously had a 15m preferred building height.

“All that is under ministerial review but you’ve got the opportunity to do something quite unique and of an up-market nature given the aspects that you are going to be able to create over the bay,” Mr Darcy said.

“You’re going to have good northerly, easterly and southerly vistas and probably reasonably to the west.

“You’re walking distance to all our key feature sports within the activity centre, being Deakin, the train station, Westfield and so forth.”

Good medicine with pharmacy

A LANDMARK pharmacy on a high-profile Belmont corner has sold for more than $2.8m after an auction.

The strong fundamentals behind the 195sq m property at 145 High Street encouraged buyers to bid hard for tenanted investment being offered for the first time in 35 years.

A Sydney investor secured the property for what the Addy understands is a sub-4 per cent yield.

Two parties contested the auction, which rose from a $2m start to $2.8m in 50 seconds. Auctioneer Raoul Salter could not entice further bidding and passed the property in.

Darcy Jarman agent Tim Darcy negotiated the sale immediately after. He would not disclose the higher price.

Mr Darcy said the campaign generated more than 70 inquiries and the crowd included a number of buyers looking to procure it.

“There was quite a few there that didn’t get to bid because it went in a very manic fashion in $100,000 increments,” he said.

The pharmacy had operated since 1986, he said.

“It’s got a proven track record and it’s attached to a medical centre with a further pathology and radiology clinic next door to that.”

The property generates an annual income of $113,417.

The sale price is higher than recent High Street transactions, including $2.5m for the former Hungry Jack’s site, which has become home to Daniel’s Donuts, and $2.16m for the home to Belmont’s Bendigo Bank branch. Both properties have a larger footprint.

Why a two-storey office block in Geelong is better than a bank

A TWO-STOREY office building in central Geelong is better than a bank at the moment, given the current low savings interest rates.

The well-presented building with 761sq m of floor space is being offered at auction as a freehold investment opportunity.

Darcy Jarman, Newtown, agent Tim Darcy said the 600sq m property at 15 Little Ryrie Street, Geelong, offered buyers a set-and-forget opportunity for the short to medium term.

Mr Darcy said the freehold property was in an activity centre zone, which presented a long-term value opportunity.

Not-for-profit disability, ageing and community service provider GenU has recently signed a new five-year lease, with an option for an additional year, providing annual rent of $135,000, with fixed 3 per cent annual increases.

Mr Darcy expects the property will sell in the high $2m range.

The property is on the north side of Little Ryrie Street, next to Centrelink and the Australian Taxation Office, and close to St John of God Hospital.

Surrounding development comprises predominantly established commercial premises of mixed age and construction, and secure residential apartment complexes currently under construction.

“It’s about as good as it gets as a set-and-forget investment in the short to medium term,” he said.

Mr Darcy said interest was solid, with local and external buyers.

“They’re very much looking at a secure passive investment, with a secure recurring income,” he said.

“First and foremost, they’re looking for somewhere to park money and get a return on their capital.”

Mr Darcy said the freehold property was serviced by two street frontages to Little Ryrie Street and Cuzens Place.

The 604sq m land component has potential long-term redevelopment scope, which is enhanced by its freehold status.

The original part of the building is double brick, with a rear extension completed six years ago with a concrete tilt panel construction.

The building presents in excellent condition throughout and comprises open-plan office space, partitioned offices, meeting rooms, training rooms, a kitchenette and toilet/ bathroom facilities.

Undercroft carparking and a storage area at the rear includes eight car spaces.

The property goes to auction on March 31 at noon.

Demand increases for small warehouses

Geelong’s massive population growth has spawned a booming industrial sector amid demand for warehouse space.

The changing shape of our newest suburbs means demand for warehouse and office space in the region’s industrial estates has never been higher.

And property investors and developers have come to the party with a booming construction pipeline.

Projects range from subdividing existing properties to unlocking large tracts of land to build new business parks.

Darcy Jarman, Geelong West agent Tim Darcy said the changing shape of the region’s economy from manufacturing to white collar services preceded the growth in population.

“When you have that level of growth, what happens after the growth in the domestic market is the requirement for ancillary amenities like the retail, commercial and industrial sectors.

“The industrial demand is all coming from warehousing — predominantly from at the small end of the scale but it’s cascading up.”

Mr Darcy said the urban expansion to Geelong’s south has sparked the industrial boom, with 150,000 new residents anticipated by 2036.

But the changing shape of the new suburbs is also driving the industrial sector.

“They’re cottage blocks — they’ve gone away from the conventional blocks that might have been 700 to 800sq m, up to 1000sq m to 1200sq m,” Mr Darcy said.

“So people’s ability to house their trailer, boat or caravan at home becomes increasingly difficult.

“These smaller warehousing is attractive because you can suit various needs and they also suit smaller tradespeople.”

Small businesses were also selecting less conventional locations, incorporating warehousing and free parking into their offices, he said.

“If you look at the projections and what’s in front of it, it’s only starting.”

The development is concentrated in Geelong’s main industrial precincts — Breakwater, South Geelong, North Geelong and Grovedale, with some work also at Moolap and North Shore.

Areas like Heales Road is better for larger format projects, like logistics and distribution, Mr Darcy said.

Investors in the market can bank on good organic value growth with new industrial land suited to smaller warehouses not expected to become available for at least a decade at Armstrong Creek, he said.

Melbourne developer Wilmac, which has 30 years experience in the industrial and commercial property space, recently entered Geelong with a business park comprising 70 office, warehouse and storage units at Breakwater.

The first stage comprising 22 units has opened at Industria, with construction of stage 2 starting this month.

Wilmac director Chris Wilkins said the premier business park had been well received by the market, with owner-occupiers, investors and tenants securing space.

“We’ve watched this market closely over the past few years and felt the timing was right for us to deliver our trademarked Industria brand,” Mr Wilkins said.

Mr Darcy said owner-occupiers and tenants represent a good cross section of Geelong business at the park, while investors were getting returns up to 6.3 per cent.

Strategic plays near arterials

GEELONG buyers have made strategic plays for industrial and mixed use land fronting arterial roads in the city’s southeast.

Local interest placed a higher premium than Melbourne buyers on the sites fronting Portarlington Road, Moolap and Barwon Heads Road, Charlemont.

Darcy Jarman, Geelong West agent Tim Darcy said a local investor secured the home of Corio Waste Management at 41-49 Wills Crescent, Moolap.

The 11,441sq m industrial site had sold at the upper end of the $2.5m to $2.75m quoted price range, Mr Darcy said.

CWM has a new five-year lease with options to 2040.

“It was a secure investment, it was basically a good land bank with cash flow,” he said.

The site is near the eastern end of the planned Geelong Ring Road extension.

Geelong developers paid more than $1.5m for a 200m frontage to Barwon Heads Road at Charlemont.

The strategic nature of the 1.5ha property would become evident through the Marshall precinct structure plan, he said.

“When the plan gets rolled out they will look to develop that site,” Mr Darcy said.

Lab secures COVID-19 testing centre for up to two years

A DRIVE-through COVID-19 testing centre has ended a long search for a tenant for a landmark corner in Geelong’s inner west.

Australian Clinical Labs has opened the testing centre after signing a 12-month lease, with a 12-month option, on 241 Pakington Street, Newtown.

Darcy Jarman, Geelong West, leasing agent Denham Humphreys said the corner location at Aberdeen Street made it a walk-up start for the pathology firm.

“It’s a very high exposure corner, the amount of traffic that goes past there is amazing.”

The agents were seeking $80,000 a year in rent for the 541sq m property, achieving a price close to that, he said.

“The interest that we had was for the exposure side of things. It was good for Clinical Labs on that front. The access point from either side allowed for drive-through,” he said.

“They’ve set up a marquee out the front, so even if it was wet conditions, it can still be done quite well. They have full signage now, it’s very good exposure for them.”

Mr Humphreys said retail and particularly small warehouse space leasing was operating “surprisingly” well, considering the COVID-19 Stage 3 measures in Geelong.

“The leasing market is still ticking over really well. Surprisingly so. It went quiet during initial lockdown period,” Mr Humphreys said.

“The retail space tends to be moving and we’ve got good movement with warehouses, particularly small warehouses.”

 

Strategic location drives $5M-plus sale

FUTURE development prospects underpinned strong interest in a strategic South Geelong transport hub that’s sold for well above $5 million.

The long-term home of the McColl’s transport company forms part of the 22,462sq m site that was snapped up by a local investor.

Darcy Jarman, Geelong West agent Tim Darcy said the agency received up to eight different offers for the adjoining properties at 92-96 Wood Tce and 57 Wood St, South Geelong.

They generate an annual rental income of more than $400,000 from tenants McColl’s and Allied Pickfords.

The properties were offered either separately or together as part of an executers’ expressions of interest campaign and Mr Darcy said both options attracted buyers from Geelong and further afield.

“In the end when we shortlisted some potential purchasers that we wanted to deal with, all had an appetite to buy it in one line and that is what happened,” he said.

He could not reveal the sale price but said it was closer to $6 million than $5 million.

Mr Darcy said the combination of established tenants and the chance to unlock the future potential of Strategic location drives $5M-plus sale the large, corner site drove up the value.

The landholding is open to more intense development once the lease agreements expire.

“I think it was a number of things that attracted buyers,” he said.

“The property was very much a strategic site with industrial zoning in that very prominent corner.

“The McColl’s business has been there in some shape or form since 1964, the other tenant has been there about seven or eight years.”

McColl’s holds a three-year lease, with a further five-year term, while Allied Pickfords is 18 months into a seven-year lease, with two further five-year terms.

Mr Darcy said there remained good demand for quality industrial property in Geelong.

“For well positioned, well leased property there is still an appetite,” he said.

The Barwon Tce site comes with a 2090sq m warehouse/depot and wash bays, while the 57 Wood St offers a building area of 2930sq m, plus a canopy.

High St draws investors for better returns

Direct property investments in areas like High St, Belmont are making more sense for buyers watching interest rates and share market values wane.

Five buyers contested the home to Bendigo Bank’s Belmont branch at 142-146 High St, which sold for $2.16 million at auction last week, for a 4.64 per cent yield.

Darcy Jarman, Geelong West agent Tim Darcy said interest came from Geelong and Melbourne investors, with a local securing the contracts.

The bank last year exercised a 3-year option on its lease since 2004. It pays $103,500 in rent.

“It’s a big building on a big parcel of land but it’s in a very dominant position,” Mr Darcy said. “It’s right near the corner of Regent St, directly opposite the Aldi car park and only 100m down the road from Coles. So it’s the bees knees in terms of prominence and location within the precinct.”

The sale will augur well for a forthcoming auction of a smaller property at Shop 4, 165 High St near the library.

The 53sq m shop is leased to long-term tenant Yummy Mummy Lolly Shop, which is on a new 7-year lease with a $14,280 annual rent.

It goes to auction on March 26 with $300,000 price hopes.

“This will be for smaller investors, self-managed super funds, because it’s affordable.

“Investors that have got a surplus level of funds in respect to where rates have retreated to and the recent wind back in the capital value in the share market, are still looking for direct property investments, provided they have the right location, the right lease and the right covenant,” Mr Darcy said.

Belmont investors called to bank on Bendigo

WITH Australia’s fifth-largest retail bank as a long-term tenant, there’s a big reason why investors will see this Belmont property has a safe bet.

The 434sq m home to the Bendigo Bank’s Belmont branch at 142-146 High St is being offered for auction in March.

Darcy Jarman, Geelong West agent Simon Jarman said a $2 million price range was being quoted for the property.

“The Bendigo Bank has been there since 2004 so it’s a longstanding tenant and they’ve just exercised a three-year
lease in October last year,”Mr Jarman said.

“But it’s more about High St and the location of that property is in the heart of High St, which is one of Geelong’s premier shopping strips.

“From an investment point of view, a longstanding tenant with a land area of just under 560sq m makes it the perfect investment with some long-term development potential.”

The building offers an open customer service area, secured teller counter and meeting offices at the front, with a lunch room and kitchenette, toilet and storage facility at the rear.

The bank signed a new three by three-year lease on the property in October, 2019.

The Bendigo pays $103,500 rent annually, plus GST, with 2 per cent annual reviews.

The bank occupies a prime position directly opposite the busy Aldi supermarket with Coles and other major banks.

Leader of the Pak

A RECORD price has been set for commercial property in Newtown’s Pakington St shopping strip.

A 775sq m retail property at 313 Pakington St, Newtown, sold for $2.4 million after auction on Friday.

The property was passed in at auction for $2.25 million, selling immediately after to a local investor.

Darcy Jarman agent Simon Jarman and Buxton, Newtown, director Ben Riddle were conjunctional agents on the campaign.

Mr Jarman said it would be a long-term investment for the buyer.

It comes with long-term leases to two tenants, Steampocket Pizzeria and Cafe and Pamper Medical Skin Clinic.

“They will sit on it. Both tenants are longstanding at the property and nothing in the short term will change,” Mr Jarman said.

He said the sale represented a circa 4.5 per cent yield, based on the $110,000 annual rent earned on the property.

It has three street frontages, including the corner of Pakington St and Huntingdon St.

It has topped a clutch of sales in recent years that have highlighted the river end shopping strip’s strong commercial property sector.

The quality of the tenants and the location drove competition for nearby 322 Pakington St, a 411sq m property home to Newtown’s pharmacy and a fashion boutique, when Darcy Jarman auctioned it in October.

A Geelong investor paid a record price to secure the site ahead of four other bidders.

In 2018, the nearby site of the suburb’s post office sold for $930,000 at auction, eclipsing price hopes by $300,000.

Mr Jarman said strong results in the commercial property sector follows from the rise in the city’s residential property market.

“Historically, the residential growth of Geelong has always come before the commercial growth,” he said.

“With the exceptional growth, it’s now starting to flow on to the commercial market with many investors outside Geelong certainly looking at Geelong as a place to invest, now even more than ever,” he said.

Mr Riddle said prior to the auction that the rare opportunity to secure almost 800sq m that provided future development opportunity would drive the demand in the property.

Big appetite for rare river end offering

A RARE commercial property in Newtown’s Pakington St is poised to set a new price record for the premium retail strip.

The freehold premises at 313 Pakington St is tipped to spark strong interest from investors and developers when it goes to auction on February 14.

It presents a chance to acquire a prime corner site of 775sqm in the tightly-held river end shopping precinct.

Price hopes are $2.3 million to $2.5 million for the property, which includes a heritage building and another neighbouring building.

It comes with long-term leases to two longstanding tenants, Steampocket Pizzeria and Cafe and Pamper Medical Skin Clinic.

The listing comes hot on the heels of a record $2.29 million sale in the strip, for a nearby retail premises at 322 Pakington St late last year.

Buxton agent Ben Riddle, who is joint listing agent with Darcy Jarman, Geelong West agent Simon Jarman, said commercial opportunities like the blue chip location were few and far between.

“Obviously it’s rare in that pocket, it’s hard to get a big site of just under 800sqm,” Mr Riddle said.

He said with two buildings and three street frontages, there was scope to further develop the site, subject to council approval.

“Newtown is more tightly held (than the Geelong West end of Pakington St) because there is less development,” Mr Riddle said.

It’s the highest priced suburb in Geelong and Pakington St is a world famous strip.

“And the good thing about having two tenants is that is spreads your risk.”

The property has an annual rental income of $109,923(net) and comes with five rear carparking spaces, accessed off Huntingdon St.

The buildings include multiple reception rooms, treatment rooms, sitting rooms, a kitchen, dining room and outdoor seating/dining area.

Mr Jarman said the fact both the tenants were established businesses added to the appeal for investors keen on a walk-up start.

“It has already attracted interest both locally and from Melbourne from buyers who want to get into the prime location with quality tenants,” he said.

A clutch of sales in recent years have highlighted the river end shopping strip’s strong commercial property sector.

The quality of the tenants and the location sparked a bidding war for nearby 322 Pakington St, a 411sqm property home to Newtown’s pharmacy and a fashion boutique, auctioned by Darcy Jarman in October.

A Geelong investor paid a record price to secure the site ahead of four other buyers.

Demand is also strong for commercial properties in Pakington St’s Geelong West shopping strip where an investor paid $3.21 million last August for 196-198 Pakington St. It had been home to Murphy’s Newsagency.

The auction of 313 Pakington St, Newtown will be on February 14 at noon.

 

 

Prime Spot for Development

A LARGE residential block with approved plans for an eight-dwelling development has been listed for sale in Highton.

The 1705sq m property at 45 South Valley Rd is sched­uled to be auctioned on November 23 with price hopes of $11 million to $1.2 million.

Permits are in place for the medium-density development, which can replace the existing weatherboard house on the property.

Darcy Jarman, Geelong West selling agent Tim Darcy said the development approval allowed eight single and two­ storey, two and three-bedroom apartments on the property.

The block is close to Hight­on Village, schools and parks.

It won’t be the first of Highton’s original big blocks to be the target of developers, with Geelong builder Biscan Developments completing a complex of eight townhouses at 114 South Valley Rd.

“Given where it is and what it is with the DA in place, there is a pent-up level of demand for these smaller type ameni­ties.” Mr Darcy said. “They’re a more convenient, low-main­tenance way of living.

He said buyers could con­sider other developments for the site, including a medical or childcare centre.

“It’s on the doorstep of Highton shopping centre and it’s easy to get to Waurn Ponds shopping centre,” he said.

“‘It’s a pivotal spot for major amenities and a whole heap of other recreation.”

He said the vendor obtained permits for the development but decided not to proceed.

It is the second develop­ment site currently offered in the neighbourhood.

A 9410sq m property at 2 Morven Court occupies a general residential zone 2 and has price hopes of $3 million.