The 93-year-old had already moved into a retirement village and was sitting in the front row at Thursday’s auction watching four buyers fight over her Wai-Iti Tce home in Fendalton.
It drew huge interest during its first weekend of open homes with more than 41 groups traipsing through its doors leaving rows of shoes at the front door. By the end of the three-week campaign more than 70 people had shown up to its open homes.
The auction for the three-bedroom, one-bathroom home opened at $800,000 and rose in $25,000 bids until it hit $1.025m when it was announced on the market.
Two bidders then dropped out of the race, but another took their place making smaller bids of between $5000 and $10,000.
But it was the couple in their 60s that had been part of the auction the whole way making one of the first bids and also the final bid. They were downsizing and planned to move in and renovate it.
Harcourts listing agent Mark O’Loughlin said the 93-year-old owner had been sitting beside him during the auction and was “ecstatic”. The sale price was significantly above its RV of $950,000.
“She was in the room sitting in the front crying, she just couldn’t believe it.”
“She was just cuddling me, saying, ‘Mark, I can’t believe it’.”
“I said: ‘Yes you can, until you give them the keys you can still do the garden’. That’s her treat every day, she leaves the rest home and drives in the car and goes and goes and spends a couple of hours in the garden.”
The other buyers who missed out were young families wanting to buy in the sought-after school zone, while one wanted to build his dream home on it.
O’Loughlin said Christchurch families were continuing to chase school zones and those currently house hunting had younger children who were future-proofing and trying to secure something in advance for next year.
“It was pram city. There were more children coming through the open homes than a pre-school.”
The Wai-Iti Tce owner was not the only one over the moon with the better-than-expected auction result.
Earlier in the day three other sellers whose auctions had been brought forward after they accepted pre-auction offers saw their houses sell for even more.
A three-bedroom, two-bathroom house on Payling Ln, in Mairehau, was on the market at $650,000 and sold for $683,700; a four-bedroom, one-bathroom house on McIntyre St, in Shirley, was on the market at $610,00 and sold for $651,000; and a two-bedroom, one-bathroom unit on Rossall St, in Merivale, was on the market at $760,000 and sold for $790,000.
Harcourts Gold auctioneer Mark Morrison said it added some “icing on the cake” for all three owners of the auctions brought forward yesterday who walked with a total of $104,700 more than they had been happy to accept.
“They were expecting them to be sold at a particular level, they are always hopeful for more but it's never guaranteed.”
Morrison said the bidding for McIntyre St auction was exceptionally fast with the two buyers going back and forward with lots of tiny bids.
“They just played the $500 game for about 50 bids.”
Of the 18 Christchurch properties called in Harcourts Gold’s auction room yesterday, nine sold under the hammer, while six of the 17 properties up for grabs in Harcourts Grenadier’s auction room also sold.
By Nikki Preston, OneRoof