THE stunning $480,000 sale of a vacant residential lot last week highlighted Blackwater's dire housing shortage.
Friday's 10am auction took place on site at 16 Bauman Way to a crowd of about 25 onlookers. There were nine registered bidders, but most stood back and watched as a mining company went head-to-head with a local builder for the rights to the 1248sq m block of dirt.
It was the local builder who came out on top once bidding finally came to a halt at $480,000 - almost double the reserve price.
Blackwater Real Estate was the marketing agent for the historic sale, and owner Jason Campbell said the price exceeded all expectations.
"It obviously demonstrates the demand for land in Blackwater, both by private investors and mine companies alike," Mr Campbell said.
"There's next to no rentals to rent out, and there is no other vacant residential land for sale as the market sits at the moment.
"That was the only block available for sale. There is some more coming up in the old drive-in estate, but still very limited options."
Mr Campbell said even with several other blocks set to come on to the market in the future, demand would inevitably be much higher than supply.
"It very much sets a high new benchmark," he said.
"Shortage of land has probably been like this for over a year now, there have been bits and pieces dripping onto the market but this certainly takes it to a new level and sets a precedent for future sales.
"$180,000 was the highest price for residential block previously sold in Blackwater, which was only earlier this year. And now we've gone to this, even though it was a little bit larger, you've gone from $180,000 to $480,000 with only an extra 400 or so square metres - a massive jump."
The drive-in estate will bring 11 vacant blocks on to the market in the near future.
"We've already got people putting their hands up trying to take all 11 lots in one hit," Mr Campbell said.
"It's a good result for us and the seller, who we work for, but it sets a precedent for Blackwater in the long-term that isn't healthy when you're wanting private people to be able to buy a block of land and build their own home.
"It starts to out-price residential land for the ordinary home buyers."
The vacant lot was believed to have been owned by a private investor who had bought it some years ago. The block already has a development approval under the Urban Land Development Authority to subdivide into three separate lots, which will likely be used for townhouses.
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