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Paul Cutcliffe, The Magic of Salesmanship

The Largest non commercial sale ever in Australia.

You can never make assumptions in real estate and you never know when the magic is going to happen. One day you can show a client a six million dollar property and then a few weeks later, you can end up selling them a fifty million dollar estate.

That’s what happened to Paul Cutcliffe, from Cutcliffe Acreage recently. Paul specialises in selling acreage around the beautiful fertile plains of the Hawkesbury River on the outskirts of Sydney, and has been listing and selling for over thirty years.

Paul tells the story, “We had a property called Fernhill – just south of Penrith at a place called Mulgoa. It is one of Australia’s greatest country estates. It is a 654-hectare property, with a magnificent Georgian sandstone homestead built in 1843 that is one of the finest examples of Georgian architecture in Australia."

“There was a gentleman who had made an enquiry about another property we had on the books, which was just in excess of $6m. I didn’t realise who he was at the time. That property didn’t suit, but we had a few more outings and a few more discussions and one thing lead to another, and he asked me about a property, that he was aware of Fernhill. I don’t think he was even aware that it was on the market. We went and had a look at it and eventually he bought it."

That sale proved to be in excess of $50m – the largest non commercial sale ever in Australia. Paul negotiated the sale with Teena Dwight from Dwight Real Estate, a woman he had worked with years earlier.

For the buyer, Paul says, “I think it was a love affair with him from the moment he saw the property. It turns out that as well as looking for acreage he wanted a place where he could hold world-class show jumping events. He also has a passion for older homes. The property just fitted him like a glove. He never really had any intention of buying it; he was just a bit curious.”

“Even though he’s quite a substantial purchaser, it still was quite an effort for him to buy it. But it was just one of those things that once he had the opportunity he just wasn’t going to let go of it. He was going to do whatever he had to do to buy it.”

Since the sale, Paul has been contacted by a number of owners of prestige properties in the area. Potential vendors want to profit from Paul’s knowledge and understanding of the area. “We’ve been doing this for so long,” says Paul, “We tend to think that it’s quite simple, but I think sometimes we don’t realise just how much we do know, and how much a lot of the real estate professionals out there do add value to what they do. It certainly gives you some kudos, there’s no doubt about that.”

 

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