The month in review: Perth
By Herron Todd White
There are several classic housing styles in Perth that are always highly sought after, reflecting both the past heritage of Perth and modern developments.
By far and away the most sought after housing style is the traditional Federation style dwelling which can be sub categorised into Queen Anne, Bungalow and the more ornate, Filigree. The dwellings are highly desirable, with renovated properties commanding a good price above local medians, although in many cases, they can be purchased below the cost of undertaking the project yourself – such is the extent of works required. However the result can be spectacular, with many significant examples found throughout Mount Lawley, Claremont, Guildford and South Perth. In Mount Lawley for example, entry level for a Queen Anne style dwelling on a quarter acre block can be in the low to mid $1 million range. However a property that features a similar dwelling
that has undergone an extensive renovation in keeping with the period has been known to achieve in excess of $2.5 million.
Post World War I, the Californian Bungalow came to the fore and features prominently throughout inner city suburbs such as South Perth, Bayswater, Nedlands and Midland. It is common for the façade and the first two inner rooms to be retained and a modern extension to occur behind, although it is just as common for the dwelling to be demolished altogether to make way for a modern construction. Entry level in South Perth for a largely original property is in the low $1 million range, whereas in Midland a basic version can be sourced for below $600,000.
Scatterings of Old English style dwellings appear throughout Perth and are based on the Tudor style. Generally these dwellings are less sought after and are often beset with less compromising floor plans or modernisation options. They appear more commonly in suburbs such as Coolbinia and Dalkeith, with entry level prices of mid $1 million.
Along the Darling Scarp, it is common for original timber clad, pole homes to command a significant premium over more conventional brick and tile dwellings. They are usually positioned on steeply sloping allotments and offer commanding views of the Perth coastal plain, including the Perth CBD and across to the Indian Ocean. While basic versions can be obtained in Lesmurdie for sub $1 million, they often command a far higher value depending on the size and quality of the dwelling and the extent of the view.
In Fremantle, limestone was used extensively as a building product in the late 19th century and early 20th century. This has subsequently been reproduced in modern mansions throughout the western suburbs. A recent example in Nedlands achieved $3 million. Original dwellings or row houses in Fremantle often transact below $1 million but are always highly sought after.
Also in Fremantle, converted warehouse developments offer a unique product and are often in high demand. The retained character of the developments, including feature exposed brickwork, raked ceilings with original timber beams and central open air courtyards appeal to multiple market segments, with basic offerings available below $500,000 and luxury apartments soaring over the million dollar mark.