Why buy a house when you can buy a town?

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Wauconda, a small town in eastern Washington, US, was recently sold on eBay. The town, located in the Okanogan National Forest on the sunny side of Washington, was established in 1898 during a gold rush and has been in business ever since. Now one lucky buyer has got it all – the zipcode, gas station, bar and grill restaurant, four-bedroom ranch and 100-year-old log cabin that’s been converted into a workshop. There’s even gold in the backyard creek.

It’s not the first time Wauconda has been up for sale. The single owner was ready to retire in 2008 after spending $100,000 remodelling the town. With a previous price tag of US$1.1m, it was sold in April for just US$370,601. The owner emphasises that it’s not a distressed or foreclosed property; in fact, businesses in the town are leasing for almost $3,000 per month. With great frontage and visibility on a busy state highway just a few hours from Whistler in Canada, Wauconda was listed as “the perfect place to raise a family and work from home”.

But if you thought sales like this were one in a million, unusual properties are actually more common than you may think.

In January this year, New Yorks “skinniest” house sold for US$2.1m. The Greenwich Village property is just 2.9 metres wide and 9.1 metres deep, and was built in the space of a carriage entrance in 1873 during a smallpox epidemic. Last year, an 8,250 square foot Gothic castle, complete with turrets and spires, sold in Harlem for the discounted price of US$1.5m. And if you’re wondering where to find the most expensive house, look no further than Mumbai, India, where a 173 metre tall mansion is the first home in the world that exceeds $1bn.

If a unique property appeals to you, you can grab your own slice of history in Newtown, Sydney, where a two-level Victorian terrace that was the scene of a bloody battle between police and union squatters will go up for auction on June 2, 2010.


Whether you are looking to buy your first home, move home, refinance, or invest in property, a mortgage broker can help. Access loans from all the major lenders, get help with paperwork – plus there is no charge for this service. Get help from a local mortgage broker

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