Nicole Lindsay, 23 March 2016

Three investors in a Blackburn petrol station have more than doubled their money in less than two years after selling the BP outlet at auction last week for $10.7 million.

Eight bidders vied for the 4200-square-metre site at 233-243 Whitehorse Road. It is on the residential side of the road in the retail golden mile.

Title deeds show the trio, Jinfei Chen, Zhi Qing Wu and Zhengli Xu, paid $5.2 million for the property in July 2014.

CBRE agent Joseph Du Rieu, who handled the sales campaign along with Justin Dowers, Lewis Tong and Kevin Tong, said eight bidders – local and offshore investors – competed for the property and three parties bid until the end.

An offshore private investor was successful and the deal reflected a sharp 3.6 per cent yield.

It’s a huge jump in property values. While the price equates to $2548 a square metre, it’s not a record. A Petbarn in nearby Nunawading recently sold for $3793 a square metre on a 4.7 per cent yield.

However, both deals indicate rising prices for investment properties in the area. An Officeworks in nearby Vermont South sold for $1767 a square metre last year and another BP petrol station in Vermont fetched $1909 a square metre on a 7.09 per cent yield.

“We’ve talked about this in the office and we think it’s a response to the really strong retail environment,” Mr Du Rieu said.

The large site is opposite a string of big retailers and a short drive to the busy Nunawading section of the big box strip.

“There could be a residential play but it’s locked up as an investment until 2042, if you include all the options,” he said.

The Whitehorse Road strip runs through fast gentrifying middle-ring eastern suburbs, where old weatherboard and brick veneer houses are either being renovated and extended or bulldozed and replaced by McMansions and townhouses. The median house price in Blackburn is $1.1 million.

Extracted in full from the Sydney Morning Herald.

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