THE LARGEST rural acreage to come under the hammer in Grafton in recent times has created unprecedented interest, says a rural property specialist.
Ross Creek at Buccarumbi, a 2447.94ha cattle and timber property with river frontage, will be auctioned on February 17 at South Grafton. A prospectus on the property estimates bidding should start at $1.4million.
The rural property specialist at Farrell McCrohon Stock and Station Agents, Jojo Newby, said she had never seen interest like it, locally or from outside the area.
"I had more inquiries in one week than we have ever had over an entire five-week campaign," Ms Newby said. "It's absolutely gone through the roof."
But it's not just the top of the range properties attracting buyers to rural properties. Ms Newby said smaller properties about eight to 10 hectares with houses were also attracting big interest.
"The boom in cattle prices is bringing a lot of people into the market," she said.
"And we're also getting interest from the timber industry, either from sawmill owners or private contractors who supply logs to the mills. And there is interest coming from 'tree changers' looking to move to a quieter rural lifestyle."
Ms Newby said the number of inquiries she had fielded from local potential buyers was encouraging.
"It's generating positivity in the rural market," she said. "We're getting a lot of interest from property holders looking to expand their businesses to take advantage of the good cattle prices."
Ms Newby has noticed a trend of some older families cashing in their properties as their children chose to leave the rural lifestyle.
"We've got a property now where a family who has been been farming it for 28 years are looking to sell," she said.
A director at McKimms Real, Adam Crawley, said interest in the Buccarumbi property had been so high his office had received inquiries about it.
"It's certainly created a lot of interest," he said. "Unfortunately for us, we don't have a lot of rural stock, but we'd like to get more.
"Generally the market is good. Finally we've got some good news with building new bridges, jails and highways, instead of closing them."
He likened the market to the early stages of the 2000s when property prices skyrocketed.
"Like then the problem for agents was to get the stock to sell," he said.
"Prices are improving simply because of the law of supply and demand."
The Ross Creek auction will be held at the South Grafton Ex-Servicemen's Club on February 17.
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