The Grape Escape: Why More Home Buyers Are Making a Vine Switch

“Younger people are looking more at these types of ventures,” Jolliffe said. “As we know from recent years, there is no great currency and no guarantee of what the future holds. People who did think ‘I’ll do it at a later stage’ come forward with their decisions.”

Jolliffe has listed Tulloch wines, which are being sold through an “expressions of interest” campaign. The winery and cellar door, cafe and land in Pokolbin are valued at about $21 million.

Tulloch Wines in the Hunter Valley is up for sale and is valued at $21 million.Credit:HTL property

Tulloch Wines has been in the Hunter Valley for 127 years.

Tulloch Wines has been in the Hunter Valley for 127 years.Credit:HTL property

The 127-year-old Hunter Valley winery has attracted interest from buyers seeking a lifestyle change, as well as corporate buyers seeking land with vineyards in one of the country’s best-known wine regions.

Buyers of all kinds were drawn to areas with excellent wine reputations, Jolliffe said.

“There’s only one Hunter Valley, one Yarra Valley, and one Margaret River, and properties like this are getting scarcer.”

Vine changers are also becoming more common on the Mornington Peninsula. Eldridge Estate, which sold for an undisclosed amount in April but had an asking price between $7 million and $7.7 million, was bought by a lifestyle buyer.

Eldridge Estate has recently been sold for an undisclosed price.

Eldridge Estate has recently been sold for an undisclosed price.Credit:Kay & Burton Flinders

Kay & Burton Flinders partner Tom Barr Smith said the high land value and the option of a sideline made such purchases popular.

“It’s more apparent these days that there are more lifestyle buyers for these properties,” he said.

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It’s a similar story in Western Australia, although some families are selling because children choose not to take over their parents’ business.

“There is now more interest in vineyard properties from the lifestyle buyers than in previous years,” said Langley and Co-Advisors Mike Calneggia, who sells wineries in Margaret River.

“There are generally quite a few transactions going on, but some people buy the wineries but not the wine business – they let someone else take care of the vineyard and make and sell the wine.”

Some want to sell the grapes and, depending on the type of fruit, it can be worth a lot of money. Some white varieties are rarer given the hunger for white wine over the last two years.

In South Australia’s Barossa Valley, homes featuring the area’s famed shiraz grapes were especially popular, said Homburg Real Estate’s sales agent Rohan Semmler.

Tweedies Gully Winery in Williamstownfor sale with an expectation of $4 million, has shiraz grapes and is also a property many lifestyle buyers are interested in.

Tweedies Gully Winery has price expectations of about $4 million.

Tweedies Gully Winery has price expectations of about $4 million.Credit:Homburg Real Estate

“The questions we get are people who want to move to the area for their lifestyle, but also to run their own business and get a new income stream,” Semmler said.

Anyone hoping to be successful in a market like the Barossa Valley needs to be in a good position to buy, with the right fruit, but also do the hard work, he said.

“People have to be willing to go in and get their hands dirty, the minute you start outsourcing work, it costs more money,” he said. “I think those who do it well do the job and know how to market themselves.”

People want to buy a lifestyle vineyard like Tweedies Gully Winery, says Rohan Semmler.

People want to buy a lifestyle vineyard like Tweedies Gully Winery, says Rohan Semmler.Credit:Homburg Real Estate

In Queensland, Clark and Hadlow are more than willing to get their hands dirty and hope to have their winery up and running within the next two years.

They have plans to plant Albarino and Fiano white wine varietals and the Malbec red wine varietal, as well as add some accommodation for couples to enjoy romantic weekend getaways outside of Brisbane.

“We’ll make sure it goes well, we have a great support network,” Clark said.

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