'Suit investors or staff accommodation': Landlord Logan Cranston is selling his HQ Apartments' Block E


A rarely-found large rental block’s for sale near Queenstown’s Frankton Beach.

The 20 units — 18 self- contained studios and two larger one-bedders — comprise HQ Apartments’ two-level Block E, and are being marketed by Bayleys Queenstown’s Mark Martin.

They’re individually titled and metered, and are fully tenanted on long-term leases.

The block’s owned by Logan Cranston, who moved down from Auckland after buying the run-down former 48-unit Frankton Arm Apartments — colloquially then known as ‘The Bronx’ — plus a manager’s house, in 2011.

Having on-sold other units, Block E — plus two two- bedders which are on the market separately — are most of what he’s got left.

Cranston says he spent well over $1 million on refurbishing this block alone, with double- glazing, increased insulation and new kitchens and bathrooms along with infrastructure work.

‘‘Basically, the roof and walls are all that was left.’’

The result is the units were healthy homes-compliant before the legislation was introduced.

There’s also ample carparking.

‘‘Someone will probably build something there and use some of the space, but we have  so many tradies here, and a lot of them have got two vehicles.’’

Cranston believes HQ Apartments’ location’s only become more desirable over the years.

‘‘This strip, particularly with the big lake view, will become more of an asset over the years.’’

The area’s also become more appealing, he believes, due to the relative quietness of the new Airbus A320neo planes landing and taking off from the nearby airport.

‘‘When I got here, with the old Boeings you stopped talking and counted to 10 while the planes went out.’’

He says Block E — currently returning $334,920 gross income per year — would easily suit an investor.

‘‘An investor could literally step straight in — all they’ve got to do is change my bank account with [property manager] Queenstown Accommodation Centre.

‘‘But, equally, I could see it going to staff accommodation.

‘‘When tourism comes back in any way, we’ll go back to a shortage of accommodation again, and most of the other cheap blocks are gone.’’

Real estate agent Mark Martin, who brought the units to market just before Christmas, says ‘‘there’s been good steady email inquiry’’.

‘‘It’s a pretty unique opportunity to purchase, I guess, 20 income streams in one purchase.

‘‘The fact they’re all individually titled would also allow whoever buys it to sell them down individually, if they choose.’’

Martin also foresees rental growth as tourism recovers.

And if a new buyer wanted to manage the rentals themselves, they’d make a 6.5% saving, he notes.

The sales method’s by ‘deadline private treaty’ closing February 15.