Shopfront debate continues as licensees, external owners speak out

EXPECTATION: External owners have refuted claims certain properties on Parker Street were sold on expectation. Picture: Lachlan Grey
EXPECTATION: External owners have refuted claims certain properties on Parker Street were sold on expectation. Picture: Lachlan Grey

Real estate licensees and external property investors have weighed into Cootamundra’s empty shopfront debate. 

It follows a string of articles beginning September 26 after the Herald addressed concerns over a perceived ‘dead zone’ for businesses along Parker Street after speaking with former tenants.

This was followed last week by a call to arms from local realtors who stressed landlords would “bend over backwards” to bring the right businesses into town.  

Cootamundra real estate manager Daryl Sedgwick has since argued that certain properties in that area may have been sold on expectation. 

“Rent around here is actually lower than surrounding towns but properties can be sold on expectation,” he said.

“There’s a chance that property owners might have purchased on what they thought would be higher returns.”

Wayne Eagles, a Camden-based investor with Cootamundra properties, strongly disagrees with this assessment.

“Our expectations are no different,” Mr Eagles said. 

“I don't live in Cootamundra but I’m not wildly happy about having no-one in those shops either.”

Mr Eagles said steps had been taken to retain tenancies in the Parker Street properties, including reducing rental prices.

“We offered to reduce the costs previously and we’ve been fairly obliging across the board,” he said.

“I’ve reduced rent in line with the abattoir closures and the agents have been pulling all the stops out.”

“There's not much more than we can do.”

The debate has sparked further questions surrounding shopping in the Cootamundra region and we want your feedback.

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