Australia: Property & Projects – What's News - 23 March 2015

Last Updated: 1 April 2015
Article by Steve Aitchison, Lisa Cody and Lou Farinotti

Most Read Contributor in Australia, September 2016

In the media – National

ABA: Low interest rates yes, property bubble no: new report
House prices in Australia are in a period of strong growth spurred on by low interest rates, but there is no evidence of a property bubble, according to a report on the housing market released today by the Australian Bankers' Association (11 March 2015). More...

REIA: Moderating lending activity
The latest housing finance figures released today by the ABS reflect flat lending activity for housing. The Real Estate Institute of Australia (REIA) says the figures for January 2015 show, in trend terms, that the number of owner-occupied finance commitments fell by 0.1 per cent. This fall follows three consecutive months of no change (11 March 2015). More...

Government to define "agribusiness" following new FIRB rules
The Federal Government wants to create a clearer definition of agribusiness after it confirmed new laws surrounding foreign acquisitions. But the working definition of an agribusiness is limited to primary production — large corporate farms are covered but processors and manufacturers are not (05 March 2015). More...

Equanimity penalised for misleading ads
Gold Coast-based financial planning and property management company, Equanimity Concepts Pty Ltd, has paid $30,600 in penalties for false or misleading advertising. ASIC was concerned the company could have misled consumers into thinking that if they borrowed with Equanimity, they would be helped to repay their home loan in a reduced timeframe without incurring further debt (04 March 2015). More...

Treasurer Orders Foreign Investor to sell illegally purchased Sydney Mansion
The Treasurer has made an order under the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Act 1975 (the Act) for Golden Fast Foods Pty Ltd (Golden Fast Foods), to divest the established residential property in Sydney. The property was bought illegally by Golden Fast Foods, which is ultimately owned by Evergrande Real Estate Group, a large company listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, via a string of shelf companies (03 March 2015). More...

In the media – Victoria

Planning Minister Richard Wynne makes first major approvals for Melbourne projects and suburbs
In his most significant major approvals since taking office, Planning Minister Richard Wynne has signed off on five new "activity centres" in middle and outer Melbourne, in a bid to generate more jobs and higher-density residential development (04 March 2015). More...

In the media – New South Wales

Sydney Airport Major Development Plan approved
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss has approved a Major Development Plan for Sydney's Kingsford Smith Airport. The Plan includes a new ground transport network for Terminal 2 and Terminal 3, a 430-room 4–5 star hotel and redevelopments to improve passenger access and convenience (12 March 2015). More...

Barangaroo South Concept sets the Agenda for a Taller Global City for Sydney
The revised concept plan for Barangaroo South will add new high quality buildings to this exciting new urban precinct for Sydney, says the Urban Taskforce (06 March 2015). More...

Regional NSW can grow through sale of poles and wires
NSW Farmers announced today that it supports the privatisation of NSW's poles and wires assets so long as some assurances are made to country NSW Members of the association agreed to support the privatisation so long as a minimum of one third of the funds from the sale or lease back arrangement are dedicated to rural and regional infrastructure projects (05 March 2015). More...

Sydney's new housing must be located alongside Light Rail & Metro Routes
As Sydney grows it will be important to build new urban housing alongside new metro and light rail routes, says the Urban Taskforce (04 March 2015). More...

In Practice and Courts - National

Options Paper on Foreign Investment: Consultation
The Government is seeking views on proposed reforms to strengthen Australia's foreign investment framework, particularly around residential real estate and agriculture. Interested parties are invited to comment on the consultation paper. Closing date for submissions is 20 March 2015. More...

National approach to retail leasing arrangements
On 28 October 2014, the committee was granted an extension to report by the 8th sitting day in 2015. On 3 March 2015, the committee was granted a further extension to report by the 18 March 2015. More...

In Practice and Courts – New South Wales

Announcements, Draft Policies and Plans released 2015

New home improvement hub up-and-running
A new one-stop-shop for home improvements has been launched as the Department of Planning and Environment brings together new ePlanning tools making it easier to renovate (10 March 2015). More...

NSW OSR: New land tax scam
OSR is aware of a fake scam targeting land tax clients (11 March 2015). More...

NSW Valuer General Policies
On 4 September 2014, we advised that the Valuer General had commenced publishing policies for the land valuation system. Further policies have been released since then. The second set (of two further policies) was released in February 2015 (02 March 2015). More...

Cases - Victoria

ACN 005 057 349 Pty Ltd v Commissioner of State Revenue [2015] VSC 76
Land tax – Taxpayer alleged that assessment of duplicate property led to overpayment of land tax – Overpayment discovered outside prescribed statutory period for recovery – Taxpayer alleged moneys were paid under a mistake of law – Whether taxpayer entitled to bring a common law restitutionary claim in circumstances where statutory objection and other recovery procedures not utilised – Land Tax Act 1958 (Vic) ss 19, 24A(1), 90AA, 92A. More...

Cases - Queensland

Orchid Avenue Pty Ltd v Hingston & Anor [2015] QSC 042
CONTRACTS – DISCHARGE, BREACH AND DEFENCES TO ACTION FOR BREACH – REPUDIATION AND NON-PERFORMANCE – where the plaintiff and defendant entered into a contract for the sale of an apartment "off the plan" and an additional contract for sale of furniture for the apartment – completion to be after registration of the relevant plan and creation of separate title for the apartment –– where the plaintiffs registered the plan, created a separate title and settlement became due – where the defendant refused to complete the contract, having purported to terminate – where the plaintiff claimed damages for breach of contract. CONVEYANCING – BREACH OF CONTRACT FOR SALE AND REMEDIES – VENDOR'S REMEDIES – DAMAGES – where the parties entered into a contract for the sale of an apartment "off the plan" and a contract for sale of furniture for the apartment – completion after registration of the relevant plan and creation of separate title for the apartment – where the plan was registered and settlement became due – where the defendant refused to complete the contract, having purported to terminate – where the plaintiff claimed damages for breach of contract – where the plaintiff agreed to contribute $23,350 towards the total cost of furniture and their claim was reduced by this amount to reflect the net value of the contract for the apartment – nominal damages claimed for non-performance of the furniture contract. CONVEYANCING – STATUTORY OBLIGATIONS OR RESTRICTIONS RELATING TO CONTRACT FOR SALE – PROTECTION OF PURCHASERS – OBLIGATIONS ON VENDOR: DISCLOSURE, WARNINGS AND LIKE MATTERS – where the parties entered into a contract for the sale of an apartment "off the plan" – proposed apartment identified on a plan – where the plaintiff was required to provide to the defendants prior to purchase, a written statement clearly identifying the lot to be purchased under s 21 of theLand Sales Act 1984 (Qld) ('LSA') – where the plaintiff was required to provide a s 22 statement rectifying information that subsequently became inaccurate contained within the s 21 statement – where the defendants pleaded a defence under s 25(1) of the LSA allowing a purchaser to avoid a contract if "materially prejudiced" by the inaccuracy of a statement provided under s 21 – defence not pursued at trial and no evidence tendered to prove the defendants were materially prejudiced. TRADE AND COMMERCE – COMPETITION, FAIR TRADING AND CONSUMER PROTECTION LEGISLATION – CONSUMER PROTECTION – MISLEADING OR DECEPTIVE CONDUCT OR FALSE REPRESENTATIONS – where the parties entered into a contract for the sale of an apartment "off the plan" – where the defendants alleged that the plaintiff engaged in conduct which contravened s 52 of the Trade Practices Act 1974 (Cth) 'TPA'– where the defendants claimed they were induced to enter the contract and relied on misrepresentations made by the plaintiff that the views from the apartment would be unobstructed by any other building – where the defendants claimed relief under s 87 of the TPA. More...

This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Mondaq Advice Centre (MACs)
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.