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Sydney site sales soaring for Ralton Property

Coogee area in Sydney
2 min read
Blue-chip Sydney suburbs such as Coogee are favourites among developers - if they can find a suitable site. Photo: Ralton Property Group

Sydney site sales soaring for Ralton Property

Sydney’s spring selling season is spilling into summer, with a cohort of cashed-up developers scrambling to secure sites to satisfy seemingly insatiable demand in sought after suburbs.

Sydney’s spring selling season is spilling into summer, with a cohort of cashed-up developers scrambling to secure sites to satisfy seemingly insatiable demand in sought after suburbs.

Acting as a conduit to link site vendors and developers, Ralton Property Group managing director Harj Uppal has a unique insider’s perspective of where the next hotspots in Sydney property will emerge.

Over the last six months, Ralton Property Group has brokered deals collectively worth several hundred million dollars, with market momentum growing stronger as the Sydney market rises from the COVID-induced uncertainty that defined much of early 2020.

“We’ve had a bit of an end of year rush, with a number of developers looking to close deals before the New Year,” Mr Uppal told Australian Property Investor Magazine.

“We are seeing a lot of activity in the market, particularly in the east, northern suburbs and quite a bit of the south. 

“We have also done a number of subdivision sales, large parcels of land. We’ve noticed that’s been exceedingly popular with those developers looking to launch next year.”

Mr Uppal said he wasn’t particularly surprised with Sydney-based developers’ quick rebound from the COVID pandemic, with the city’s perpetual undersupply of dwellings, particularly those in quality locations, underpinning demand.

“Developers are quite smart and most developers are not new to this,” he said.

“Obviously it’s a once in 100 year event, however, people know that with distress comes opportunity. 

“There have been a lot of opportunities out there. But with that said, the sites are not selling cheap either. They’re not bargain prices like people would assume.”

Mr Uppal said Ralton Property Group was currently dealing with several large mandates from established developers, covering an exceedingly wide range of residential development types.

“Our buyer profile is quite strange,” he said.

“We’ve got a huge mandate for boarding houses and student accommodation at the moment, it’s just massive. 

“We have another mandate purely for subdivision, and we have an additional mandate for townhouses on the North Shore only.

“We have another developer who only wants duplexes. We get these mandates on our desk all the time and they are so vast and different. 

“If i had to pick what’s really popular right now it would be townhouses on the North Shore, that’s really red hot.

“Subdivisions are red hot, and then boutique, under 30 unit developments in good locations are in demand.”

Ticking the boxes for developers, Mr Uppal said, were sites located in close proximity to existing infrastructure or amenities, or in locations where major government and private sector investment is expected to occur in coming years.

“For example, we’re selling a lot of subdivision parcels in the Macarthur region,” Mr Uppal said.

“If you jump online and look at the development applications, there are about 30-odd DAs being lodged for more subdivision sites, so that gives you an idea that it’s going to be a growth area.

“We are seeing a lot of activity. To ensure your development is successful you have to look at location.”

Mr Uppal said while the pandemic hadn’t resulted in a slowdown of site sales, developers were becoming more nuanced in the product they created to cater for a post-COVID reality.

Instead of generic “cookie-cutter” designs, he said developers were catering for increased demand for open green space, large balconies and big outdoor areas in townhouse and unit developments.

“For a long time in Sydney, people have wanted bigger spaces,” Mr Uppal said.

“We were kind of moving towards that New York mentality of having a hole in the wall and high-rise studio apartments, especially with the booms, people were just buying anything.

“COVID has triggered people’s thinking of how we can create more liveable space.” 

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