Jonathan Chancellor | 7 February 2013

Andrew Winter exorcises property adjacent to Frankston Cemetery, with neighbours quiet as the grave

Andrew Winter exorcises property adjacent to Frankston Cemetery, with neighbours quiet as the grave
Grave digger Sean Dillon bought his Frankston home 12 years ago after it sat on the market for 12 months.  But nothing much has changed, and the wrong neighbours still make it hard to find a buyer. It's the Frankston Cemetery that's just across the road that has been the tough selling point for the Clarendon Street location

Dillion started working in cemeteries when he was 16 at the Springvale Cemetery as a gravedigger and doing the gardening. Dillon, who in the old days used to be called a sexton, is now kept busy looking after four cemeteries: Tyabb, Dromana, Flinders and Mornington, through Transfield Services.

Over the years Dillon says he has had the honour of burying famous people. ‘‘I buried [footballer] Trevor Barker and [sports commentator] Ron Casey.’’

With mortgage repayments “killing me”, Dillon sought the help of Selling Houses Australia for his attempt to secure a sale. He wanted $385,000 but ended up taking $353,000. 

He had paid $117,000 in 2000 for the 700-square-metre property. Before that it sold for $59,000 in 1986 and at $27,000 in 1979. 

"Being opposite a cemetery is a big factor, but I think they are the best neighbours you can have,” Dillon suggested during its marketing campaign. "You don’t have an argument with them, they don’t come over and tell you to turn down the stereo and you don’t get barking dogs.”

It was listed through Trent Martin at Bayside Residential. Set in Frankston’s Golden Triangle, the quaint cottage was renovated by Andrew Winter's team.  They went with new carpet and plenty of natural light. Its gardens had been freshened up with tropical plants, and separate kids' play area, cubby house included.  

Structurally the house had been in a terrible state without a shower or a working kitchen before its $30,000 renovation. Marketed with emphasis on its proximity to Frankston CBD, transport, hospitals, universities, TAFE, and the new EastLink and Peninsula Link, investors were advised the property has potential to be sub-divided (STCA) and with the area's rental low vacancy rates had an estimated rental return of $1,400 and $1,550 per month. It was subsequently available for rent through Emily Dowel at $1,520 a month.  

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