The month in review: Tasmania
By Herron Todd White
As Australia’s second and third oldest cities are located in Tasmania there are many superb examples of architectural styles to feast your eyes on as you wander around our centres. Many of Tasmania’s historic properties are now well known tourist destinations with probably the most renowned being World Heritage listed Port Arthur. National Trust Houses open to tourists include Woolmers Estate, Brickendon and Franklin House.
Historic properties are not confined to tourist attractions. There are many privately owned residences in Tasmania’s population centres. In recent decades as we Australians have become more consumed with our lineage, history and property restoration, period homes have generally become more sought after and are often located in the inner, higher priced suburbs.
When strolling around the periphery of both Launceston and Hobart’s central business districts, many fine period residences of varying architectural styles are on display including art deco, Federation, inter-war, Old English, arts and crafts, late Victorian gothic, Victorian Italianate terraces, Georgian Greek revival and Georgian cottages.
Capital entry barriers to the residential property market are lower in Tasmania compared to other states and so are the capital entry barriers to securing your own piece of history.
Some buyers’ preparedness to pay premium prices for historic homes was demonstrated in 2014 with the significant sale of Lyndhurst in North Hobart. This property sold for $2.8 million which at the time was a record breaking price for a stand alone residential property north of Hobart’s centre. The property is on over 5,400 square metres of land and within approximately two kilometres of the city. The building is heritage listed and described as a late Victorian style single storey mansion with extensive grounds. The home boasts a stone and cast iron verandah with a wide frontage and centre entry flanked by bay windows, Italianate entry steps and balustrades with later additions to either end of the building.
For those with more modest budgets and a bent for character homes with period features on smaller parcels of land located within approximately one kilometre of Hobart’s centre, such properties have recently sold for a touch over $500,000.
In the well regarded, centrally located suburbs of East, South and West Launceston in the north of Tasmania, for buyers with a $500,000 budget it is possible to purchase renovated 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom character residences.