Australia: Inside Track: Property & Real Estate: Recent media releases, reports and cases

In the media


Lack of network planning threatens Australia's renewable electricity future, expert warns
Huge renewable energy resources have been identified across Australia, but planning is lagging to develop a grid network suitable for the transformation that gives certainty to stakeholders (22 November 2018).  More...

Author and property spruiker Rick Otton fined record $18 million
A property spruiker who charged investors tens of thousands of dollars to learn “how to buy a house for $1” has been slapped with a record $18 million fine. The Federal Court handed down the penalty after finding last August that Rick Otton and his company We Buy Houses Pty Ltd had engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct (15 November 2018).  More...

The RBA is worried about the increased risk to property developers from tighter lending standards
The biggest risk to the Australian economy from tighter lending standards is not the impact on households, but rather property developers, according to Guy Debelle, Deputy Governor at RBA (15 November 2018).  More...

Metro Property and H&T Realty in court over defaulting apartments
Real estate agency H&T Realty is suing developer Metro Property Development over $4 million in off-the-plan apartment sales commissions. H&T, which sells apartments in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, alleges Metro withheld commissions after blaming the agent for a 20 per cent to 25 per cent default rate at seven of its Brisbane projects (14 November 2018).  More...


Fawkner residents lose fight on former Agent Orange site's development
A toxic site in Fawkner where the component parts of the deadly chemical Agent Orange were once manufactured and stored will be redeveloped, despite protests from locals concerned over contamination left in the soil for decades ( 25 November 2018).  More...

Melbourne's Festival Hall wins heritage protection, complicating redevelopment plans
An iconic 63-year-old Melbourne venue which has played host to The Beatles, Frank Sinatra and Lorde is given heritage protection, posing challenges to plans by its owners for a major redevelopment (21 November 2018).  More...

ISPT announce construction contractor for $200 million vertical campus
Developer ISPT has announced construction giant Probuild as the head contractor for the upcoming Victoria University City West Tower. Victoria University is expanding their CBD presence in order to provide industry-best learning spaces (21 November 2018).  More...

Wodonga’s first cinema complex at Junction Place gets green light
Construction of Wodonga’s first cinema and entertainment complex will commence at Junction Place in mid-2019, following approval of the plans by the City of Wodonga (20 November 2018).  More...

New South Wales

New laws to protect off-the-plan buyers
Developer's selling off the plan will now be accountable for contract breaches and compensation claims with a string of new laws aiming to further protect buyers (16 November 2018).  More...


Brisbane developer plans $83m Sunshine Coast towers
Habitat Development Group will deliver a $83 million plan for two towers as part of the new Maroochydore city centre. Habitat is currently preparing designs for lodgement with Economic Development Queensland for its project (22 November 2018).  More...

Brisbane’s first high rise school
Construction has kicked-off on Queensland’s first vertical school set to call Brisbane’s city-fringe suburb of Fortitude Valley home (14 November 2018).  More...

Gladstone port plan an Australian first
A master plan to ensure the long-term growth of the Port of Gladstone and protect the Great Barrier Reef is being hailed an Australian first (12 November 2018).  More...

In practice and courts


Draft native title reforms
The Attorney-General and the Minister for Indigenous Affairs on 30 October 2018 released exposure drafts of the Native Title Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 and Registered Native Title Bodies Corporate Legislation Amendment Regulations 2018. Copies of the exposure draft legislation, along with a public consultation paper and fact sheets summarising the proposed amendments are available here. Submissions should be provided by 10 December 2018.


SRO reminder: Declaring properties that are vacant in 2018
Homes left unoccupied for more than six months a year, which are located in 16 specified council areas, attract vacant residential land tax. If you own a property in one of these council areas and it will be unoccupied for six months or more in 2018, you can notify us here. Notifications are due by 15 January 2019.



Secretary to the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources v Caradi Pty Ltd [2018] VSC 696
LAND ACQUISITION AND COMPENSATION – Compulsory acquisition of the whole of land for the Melbourne Convention Centre Development – Market value of the land at the date of acquisition – Comparability of sales – The use of sales evidence which occurred after the date of acquisition – Land purchased as a long term real estate investment – Impact of remediation costs – Effect on the highest and best use of the land – Claim for disturbance – Whether applicant entitled to compensation for replacement land costs where replacement land has not been purchased – Claim for professional expenses – Claim for solatium – Land Acquisition and Compensation Act 1986 ss 40, 41(1)(d), 41(1)(f), 44 – Valuation of Land Act 1960 s 5A.

631 Plenty Road Preston Pty Ltd v Darebin CC (Red Dot) [2018] VCAT 1849
Interpretation of Standard D24 of clause 58.07-1 which relates to functional layout objectives.
REASONS WHY DECISION IS OF INTEREST OR SIGNIFICANCE PLANNING SCHEME – interpretation or consideration of VPP provision - Interpretation of Standard D24 of clause 58.07.

Boyles v Greater Bendigo CC [2018] VCAT 1815
Section 80 of the Planning and Environment Act 1987; Greater Bendigo Planning Scheme; Animal Boarding; Amenity Impacts; Noise, Clause 22.07; Rural Living Zone; Visual Bulk; Business identification sign in rural area and Native vegetation removal.

MAAG Developments Pty Ltd v Oxanda Childcare Pty Ltd [2018] VSCA 289
LEASES – Construction and interpretation – Applicant purchased land from related company of respondent and respondent agreed to lease land from applicant – Land to be used to build childcare centre run by respondent – Council approvals required to build childcare centre – Termination clause in agreement for lease gave either party right to terminate at certain date if: (1) approvals not obtained; and (2) settlement of sale of land not yet occurred (‘failure to settle requirement’) – Contractual scheme inconsistent with failure to settle requirement, as parties intended settlement of land to occur at same time as execution of agreement for lease – Termination clause with failure to settle requirement inconsistent with contractual intention – Whether failure to settle requirement surplus words to be ignored – Fitzgerald v Masters [1956] HCA 53; (1956) 95 CLR 420 applied; Update Constructions Pty Ltd v Rozelle Child Care Centre Ltd (1990) 20 NSWLR 251 considered – Appeal allowed. APPEALS – Whether applicant able to raise new argument not expressly put to trial judge – Where basis of new argument was before trial judge – Where new argument as to contract interpretation a question of law only – Where no prejudice identified by respondent – Applicant permitted to raise argument on appeal.

Bonney v Mornington Peninsula SC [2018] VCAT 1749
Section 82 of the Planning & Environment Act 1987; Mornington Peninsula Planning Scheme;
Addition to a dwelling (Amendment to a permit): GRZ1; DDO2; VPO1 – Off-site amenity impacts (shared views)


Caravan Parks Association of Queensland Limited v Rockhampton Regional Council [2018] QPEC 52
PLANNING AND ENVIRONMENT – APPLICATION – where applicant seeks a declaration and enforcement orders about the use of premises for overnight parking of RVs in a public park – where applicant contends the start of the use is a new use and constitutes assessable development requiring an effective development permit – where applicant contends use is a not a lawful use – where respondent contends the use is an ancillary use for which no development permit is required – whether a development offence has been committed under ss.163 and 165(a) of the Planning Act 2016 – whether enforcement orders should be granted restraining the commission of a development offence.

McVicker & Anor v Valuer General [2018] QLC 43
REAL PROPERTY – VALUATION OF LAND – OBJECTIONS AND APPEALS – Queensland – where site value is the basis of valuation – where the highest and best use of the land is not in dispute – direct comparison of sales is the best method of valuation – onus of proof on the appellants

Tseng v Valuer-General [2018] QLC 42
REAL PROPERTY – VALUATION OF LAND – METHOD OF ASSESSING – SALE OF SUBJECT – whether sale to appellant was bona fide – prudent purchaser – limited enquiries – motivation of purchaser – proposed use not feasible – purchase not for highest and best use – rural zoning – clearing permit not granted – sale not accepted as evidence of value – Spencer Test – Land Valuation Act s 18.
REAL PROPERTY – VALUATION OF LAND – METHOD OF ASSESSING – VEGETATION PROTECTION ORDER – order imposed after sale – native vegetation on land at valuation date – highest and best use – vegetation clearing not permitted – mango orchard not feasible – rural home site – impact on unimproved value – no evidentiary basis to correct unimproved value.
REAL PROPERTY – VALUATION OF LAND ¬ METHOD OF ASSESSING ¬ unimproved value – availability of water, sewerage and stormwater to subject land – assumed unimproved state – no evidence of connection costs – use of comparable sale to correctly make valuation – no basis to correct unimproved value – Land Valuation Act s 170.
REAL PROPERTY – VALUATION OF LAND – METHOD OF ASSESSING – unimproved value – drainage easement on subject land – valuation date – impact of easement use – no basis demonstrated to correct unimproved value.
REAL PROPERTY – VALUATION OF LAND – METHOD OF ASSESSING – unimproved value—comparability – comparison of sales – whether similarly affected – impact of arterial road – impact of flooding – location and surrounding amenity – adjustment to sales – analysed unimproved value – issued value – speaking report and reasoning – lack of comparability – all sales superior to subject – reduction to issued value necessary to correctly make valuation.
REAL PROPERTY – VALUATION OF LAND – METHOD OF ASSESSING – unimproved value – impact of flooding – comparison of sales – basis of comparison – similar flooding issues – extent of flooding on subject – sales not comparable – inadequate allowance on subject – reduction necessary to correctly make valuation.
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – FURTHER EVIDENCE hearing and submissions completed – no formal application to reopen hearing – generally inappropriate for Court to consider unless leave given – do interests of justice require further evidence to be received – would evidence affect outcome of appeals.
Land Valuation Act 2010 Qld; Local Government Act 2009 Qld.

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.

Chris Brodrick
Katie Miller
Gerard Timbs
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”

Related Topics
Related Articles
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
Registration (you must scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of

To Use you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

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 or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq 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 of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions