AUSTRALIA

Australia's central bank selling Sydney mansion

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 19 February, 2014, 5:10am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 19 February, 2014, 5:10am

The Reserve Bank of Australia is seeking to sell a 9,902 sq ft residential property in a harbourside suburb of Sydney amid the highest home prices the city has seen.

The central bank has listed for sale the six-bedroom Eversley mansion near the northern end of the Sydney Harbour Bridge through broker Ray White Group, according to a listing on the realestate.com.au website.

No price guide was given for the property in Kirribilli, a suburb four kilometres north of the city centre, where the median house price was A$2.35 million (HK$16.4 million), according to the website.

The RBA is putting the house up for sale after its record-low 2.5 per cent benchmark interest rate helped drive a 13.4 per cent gain in Sydney dwelling prices in the 12 months to January 31. While home prices are at a record, the country's jobless rate is at a decade-high six per cent, shrinking the likelihood of a rate increase that could arrest further price surges.

"It's a seller's market quite clearly; there are plenty of buyers out there, not many listings, and prices are rising, so it's not a bad time to sell," said Louis Christopher, managing director of real-estate data provider SQM Research. "It's a little bit perplexing as to why the RBA was holding residential property."

Rachael Wright, marketing agent at Ray White, declined to comment on the listing, which shows the house has been split into two apartments.

The RBA declined to comment on the sale, but state government filings show the RBA owns both apartments.

Kirribilli, which is also the location of Sydney residences for the prime minister and the governor general, is surrounded by water on three sides, with views of the city's Opera House and Harbour Bridge.

The Reserve Bank bought Eversley, at 10 Carabella Street, in 1986, according to a city council document.

The tenants of one of the apartments gave notice of their plans to vacate in mid-2013, according to documents released in December under a freedom of information request.

The central bank also owns a training college in Kirribilli.

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