Home buyers want $100,000 discount

INVESTORS are trying to pick up flood-damaged properties for as little as $60,000, an Ipswich real estate agent has revealed.

Several homes which went under water last month have already gone on the market for about 60 per cent of what their pre-flood price would have been.

Bargain-hungry investors have been circling the Ipswich suburbs most affected by the floods, searching for cheap homes to renovate for a tidy profit.

PRD Nationwide principal and Real Estate Institute of Queensland Ipswich zone chairman Peter Mendoza said one offer of $60,000 was made “off the cuff” during a face-to-face meeting between one of his agents and a prospective buyer.

The home was listed for $269,000 before the floods and had been reduced to just $150,000 because the owner could not afford repairs.

“The owner was disgusted by the offer,” Mr Mendoza said.

“It’s a bit cheeky, a bit opportunist I suppose. It’s someone trying to steal a bargain.”

The East Ipswich home which was subject to the offer was up to its ceiling in water during the flood and, although the hardwood frame and the floor are in good condition, will require new walls and ceilings and extensive cosmetic improvement.

Several other houses in the East Ipswich area, which would have been similarly priced before the flood, are also currently on the market for $160,000.

Mr Mendoza said some flood victims simply couldn’t afford to rebuild and had to cop the massive reduction in value, which he expects to be about 40 per cent.

“I’ve had lots of people ringing me to ask me what I think they could get for their house,” Mr Mendoza said. “That’s the hard bit. I suggest they auction them because there is a lot of interest out there and generally speaking auctions work well for anything at the bottom of the market.”

Mr Mendoza suggested a home that had been water-damaged but had since been repaired could fetch a price of about 30 per cent less than what it would have sold for prior to the flood.

He said the damaged homes could be a suitable investment for tradesmen who were capable of doing the renovations themselves.

“If they were thrifty and didn’t spend too much they could find a good rental for a cheap price,” he said.

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