First-home buyers to receive budget boost
Another 10,000 first-time buyers will be able to build or purchase new homes with a five per cent deposit under an extended federal scheme. The government will extend the First Home Loan Deposit Scheme in Tuesday’s federal budget in a measure designed to fuel construction and boost property ownership (08 May 2021). More...
Construction code changes can future-proof homes
Australia’s building ministers at their meeting on April 30 decided to include minimum accessibility standards in the 2022 National Construction Code. The new standards will come into effect in September 2022 and reflect the fact that our housing needs are changing as our population ages (07 May 2021). More...
Data reveals progress towards CBD reactivation
The Property Council of Australia’s latest office occupancy survey has revealed a big step up in activity in the CBDs of Sydney and Melbourne despite the cities still lagging behind other capitals (07 May 2021). More...
East coast logistics portfolio tipped to fetch $200m
The rise of e-commerce, combined with other tailwinds supporting the occupier market, has seen the industrial and logistics sector in Australia become increasingly institutionalised, with buyers drawn in by strong lease covenants and stable income collection (06 May 2021). More...
Low rental vacancy rates welcome news for landlords
Rental vacancy rates have dipped below pre-pandemic levels while rent rates are tipped to rise during the next 12 months. Vacancy rates are lower in all capital cities except for Melbourne when compared to this time last year, according to Domain’s rental vacancy rate report for April 2021 (05 May 2021). More...
Home loan commitments reach new record levels
New loan commitments for housing rose 5.5 per cent in March 2021 (seasonally adjusted) to a new record high of $30.2 billion according to new figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (04 May 2021). More...
Price of farmland soars in every Australian state and territory in 2020, report finds
Australian real estate may be hitting new price highs in cities around the country, but during the peak of COVID last year it was farmland that set the ball rolling (04 May 2021). More...
Sydney and Melbourne the big losers as people move to regional Queensland in record numbers
The number of people moving to the regions — and staying put — is the highest on record, with demographers pointing to the pandemic as the reason Greater Melbourne has seen the biggest population exodus (05 May 2021). More...
More affordable access to insurance for northern Australians
Northern Australian residents would be offered more affordable and accessible home and business insurance, thanks to the establishment of a reinsurance pool by the Morrison Government (04 May 2021). More...
REIA: Growth in housing finance approvals resumes
The March 2021 Lending to Households and Business figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics show that the value of new loan commitments for housing rose again (04 May 2021). More...
CoreLogic finds house price gains have eased off
The latest data, for April, shows an average 1.8 per cent rise nationally, with the biggest monthly increases in Darwin (2.7 per cent), Sydney (2.4 per cent) and Adelaide (2 per cent) (03 May 2021). More...
Why unit prices have lifted in Australia's biggest cities, despite rental slump
Apartment rents have tumbled in parts of Australia's largest cities – yet prices are rising. Property experts say affordability issues are at play, with the gap between house and unit prices the widest they've ever seen (01 May 2021). More...
Foreign investors surging back into commercial property in Australia
Foreign investment in Australian commercial property has almost doubled during the first quarter of 2021 compared with figures for the same period in 2020 (30 May 2021). More...
Greenspace could increasingly impact property prices
It is already well established that greenspaces such as parks and bushland have a positive effect on the climate, and on our mental wellbeing. Corelogic plans to conduct a more detailed, nationwide study to assess the relationship between greenspace and property prices (28 April 2021). More...
Rents continue recovery from COVID impact
The March 2021 quarter CPI figures show that the rental market continued its recovery from the impact of the COVID pandemic in most capital cities, according to the Real Estate Institute (28 April 2021). More...
Property industry welcomes adjustment to Government’s super reforms
The Property Council of Australia has welcomed changes to the Federal Government’s Your Future Your Super reforms which will ensure that unlisted property investments are fairly assessed through the new annual performance test (28 April 2021). More...
Lendlease office funds achieve carbon neutral status
One of the nation’s largest group of office assets, Lendlease Funds Management’s Australian office portfolio, has officially been certified carbon-neutral. The carbon-neutral status applies to more than $11.1 billion in office assets and 566,000 square metres of floor space managed by Lendlease across three of its flagship office funds (27 April 2021). More...
Sustainable infrastructure set to deliver big dividends in our economic rebound
The twin crises of the Black Summer bushfires and Covid-19 have tested the resilience of Australia’s systems and recalibrated business-as-usual. The challenges and consequences ahead are interconnected – but so are the dividends that sustainable infrastructure can deliver to communities (27 April 2021). More...
New audit program cracking down on crooked certifiers
The NSW Government has launched a data-led audit regime to target the state’s high risk building certifiers and triple the number of buildings to come under scrutiny by the building regulator (03 May 2021). More...
Plans put porward for 31-storey Surfers Paradise tower
Plans to build a 31-storey tower on Surfers Paradise’s “pinch point” between the ocean and river have been submitted to the Gold Coast City Council (07 May 2021). More...
Brisbane council predicts cost blow-out in state’s Riverwalk pledge
Brisbane City Council has questioned whether a $22 million Palaszczuk government election pledge would be enough to fill Riverwalk gaps at Kangaroo Point, despite not committing to any funding of its own to a project it expected could come in at triple the price (05 May 2021). More...
BVN-designed 8-storey office block to rise above Brisbane’s historic St. Patrick’s Church
Leading Australian architecture studio BVN has been engaged by the Brisbane Archdiocese to design a new eight-storey commercial office building adjacent to the state-heritage-listed St. Patrick’s Church in Fortitude Valley. A code assessable development application has been lodged with Brisbane City Council (07 May 2021). More...
Why securing a unit in this new building is like 'hitting the lottery'
As the federal and state budgets loom, a Queensland community housing provider says it's "ready, willing and able" to build more affordable properties, but needs more investment from government to bring the plans to fruition (07 May 2021). More...
How 'stay and play' mantra could carry Coast tourism back to its glory days
Unprecedented investment in new hotels is pushing the Gold Coast’s holiday playground reputation into overdrive as the city gambles on new accommodation to dominate all sectors of the stay-and-play market (06 May 2021). More...
Council plan to buy historic Lamb House knocked back by Queensland government
The state government knocked back a Brisbane City Council pitch to jointly buy a dilapidated historic riverside mansion to put it in public hands (06 May 2021). More...
State reveals preferred route for Coomera Connector
The route is proposed to cross the Albert River east of Eagleby, connecting to the M1 and Logan Motorway at Loganholme. It was considered alongside six other alternative routes by independent traffic planners and environmental specialists (30 April 2021). More...
Investors spark frenzy on Brisbane’s commercial property market
Certain commercial property markets in Brisbane saw their best March on record, with the city’s south enjoying a “frenzied” success as investors flocked to snap up warehouses and logistics centres, new data has revealed (29 April 2021). More...
Silence is deadly, compliance isn’t
Landlords are being encouraged to act now as the deadline for residential rental properties to comply with smoke alarm legislation looms. From 1 January 2022, residential rental properties would be required to have interconnected, photoelectric smoke alarms installed in every bedroom, in hallways and on every level (29 April 2021). More...
‘Forgotten residents’ fume over Inland Rail environmental impact snub
The angry residents are demanding to know why an environmental impact study has been ruled out for the Beaudesert-Acacia Ridge leg of the $15b project (27 April 2021). More...
Queensland study maps route to car-free cities of the future
Brisbane residents who have ditched cars in favour of other means of transport are leading the way to a car-free vision (27 April 2021). More...
07 May 2021 Car parking fringe benefits A car parking fringe benefit may arise if an employer provides car parking to an employee.
Announcements, Draft Policies and Plans released 2021
NSW Land Registry Services - electronic dealings in NSW
All eligible Real Property Act dealings will be available for lodgment as electronic dealings in NSW, without needing to attach a paper form as is the current process from 10 May 2021. The remaining paper transactions (known as ‘residual’ documents) have been made available for lodgment as electronic dealings from 10 May 2021 and are listed here.
REIQ: From 30 April: Updates to COVID-19 Response for Residential Tenancies
The Queensland Government has recently announced some changes to the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation (COVID-19 Emergency Response) Amendment Regulation 2021. While some important temporary regulatory measures will continue until 30 September 2021, others have ceased from April 30th, 2021. Please take note of the changes listed here (05 May 2021). More...
PCA regulatory update 29 April 2021
There have been a variety of regulatory updates regarding building cladding, Logan City Council Planning Amendments, the Sunshine Coast Planning Strategy, Caboolture West, and fire protection licensing. More...
City of the Gold Coast: Express DA service
As part of the City’s economic support during COVID-19, the City is offering a 50 per cent discount on Express DAs for 12 months (from 27 October 2020 to 27 October 2021). More...
REIQ training requirements for the Queensland real estate industry
The Office of Fair Trading has released new training requirements for the Queensland real estate industry. As of 30 September 2021, the current qualification will be superseded and replaced by a new property services training package. At the REIQ, the new training package not only recognises the significance of the work undertaken by real estate professionals, but also better reflects modern day real estate agency practice.
State Infrastructure Strategy announcement
A new State Infrastructure Strategy will be released in conjunction with seven regional infrastructure plans in aid of supporting our post COVID-19 economic recovery. This follows the recent announcement of the formation of a Growth Areas Delivery Team to address land supply issues in SEQ.
You're invited to have your say and help shape the State Infrastructure Strategy. You can share your views via the survey. Consultation closes on 31 May 2021.
Extension of COVID Bill
State Parliament has moved to extend the timeframe for several measures introduced to allow Government to respond to the impacts of COVID-19 through the COVID-19 Emergency Response and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2021.
Among other changes, this includes extending the timeframe for the expiry of the dispute resolution provisions within the Retail Shop Leases and Other Commercial Leases (COVID-19 Emergency Response) Regulation, from 30 April to 30 September, 2021. This timeframe had previously been extended from its initial expiry of December 2020.
Planning (COVID-19 Emergency Response) Regulation 2020
This temporary regulation establishes requirements for keeping documents physically available for inspection and purchase in recognition of health and safety restrictions. This enables local governments to continue to meet their statutory obligations. The regulation is in effect to 30 September 2021. More...
Inland Rail – Helidon to Calvert project – draft environmental impact statement Closes 23 June 201
Big Rocks Weir project draft terms of reference for an environmental impact statement Closes 07 June 2021
Cross River Rail Project – request for project change application – Clapham Yard, Moorooka Closes 04 June 2021
Warde Street Pty Ltd v Minister for Planning  VSC 238
VALUATION AND PLANNING – land in urban renewal area made subject of a development contributions plan (DCP) overlay pursuant to amendment AMC145 to the Maribyrnong Planning Scheme (MPS) – DCP overlay requires permit granted for specified types of development within area to contain condition requiring payment of a levy as condition of the right to develop pursuant to permit – plaintiff holder of planning permits to construct multi-story mixed use developments comprising residential and retail premises – permits required plaintiff to enter into agreement under s 173 of the Planning and Environment 1987 to provide a financial contribution towards costs of some infrastructure items subsequently included in DCP – plaintiff also holder of permits to subdivide proposed developments into lots in stages in accordance with endorsed plans – condition 3 of subdivision permit required payment of development infrastructure levy in accordance with DCP in respect of each unit payable in stages prior to issue of statement of compliance with any works or payments which the owner has paid under earlier specified permits to be reflected as a credit for the value of any works comprised in infrastructure projects funded by the DCP – combined effect of permits requires plaintiff to make sequential payments towards infrastructure costs first under development permits which authorise construction of proposed mixed use buildings and secondly under the permits which permit subdivision of those buildings – second requirement imposed pursuant to and in accordance with terms of MPS as amended by AMC145.
JUDICIAL REVIEW – whether AMC145 beyond power and of no legal effect because contrary to s 46K of the Planning and Environment Act 1987 Act it purports to levy development contributions in respect of development that has already been approved by existing permits and/or does not relate the need for works, services and facilities (or some of them) to the proposed development of land in the area as required by s 46I – whether to the extent that the DCP purports to levy development contributions in respect of the subdivision of the air space for dwellings, the construction of which has already been approved under an existing permit, such requirement is invalid because it is not a DCP within the meaning of s 46K of the P&E Act; it does not relate the need for the works, services and facilities to be provided (or some of them) to the proposed development of the land in the area as required by s 46I of the P&E Act; it is an unlawful tax – meaning of ‘proposed development’ in s 46K(1) – Meaning of requirement that the proposed works and facilities relate to the development of land in the area to which the DCP applies – whether imposition of levy upon subdivision of proposed development valid – AMC145 valid – Maribyrnong Planning Scheme, AMC145, cls 45.06, 72.04; Planning and Environment Act 1987 ss 6(2)(j), 6(2)(l), 46I, 46J, 46K, 46N, 62(1)(a), 173, Part 3B; Eddie Barron Constructions Pty Ltd and Shire of Pakenham (1991) 6 AATR 10; Casey City Council v Carson Simpson Pty Ltd  VSC 25; (2007) 18 VR 19.
The Heat Group Pty Ltd v Paragon Care Limited  VSC 204
CONTRACTS – landlord and tenant – forfeiture - relief against forfeiture - urgent application seeking relief from forfeiture of lease – re-entry into premises subject of sub-lease pursuant to s 146 Notice – notice not complied with by expiry - rent unpaid and outstanding – principles of relief from forfeiture - future capacity to pay rent a consideration – no exceptional circumstances – injunction to prevent defendant from calling upon bank guarantee without notice not persisted with - calling on security without notice – principles for determining costs of application - plaintiff to pay defendants costs incurred - Shiloh Spinners Ltd v Harding  AC 691 - Baby Zone (Aust) Pty Ltd (Administrator Appointed) v Keira Street Securities Pty Ltd  NSWSC 528 - Jam Factory Pty Ltd v Sunny Paradise Pty Ltd & Ors  VicRp 54;  VR 584 - Bland v Ingrams Estates Ltd and others (No 2)  EWCA Civ 1088;  2 WLR 361.
Lifestyle Investments 1 Pty Ltd v Commissioner of State Revenue  VSCA 107
LAND TAX – exemption for land used as registered caravan park – scope of exemption – caravan park developed in stages – whether whole or part of park exempt – meaning of land ‘used as’ – need for apportionment – Applewood Residential Developments Pty Ltd v Commissioner of State Revenue  VSCA 207, Eaton & Sons Pty Ltd v Warringah Shire Council  HCA 33; (1972) 129 CLR 270, considered – Land Tax Act 2005 ss 77(1), 77(2), 77(3); Residential Tenancies Act 1997 Part 4A.
Miller v Martin  VSCA 108
REAL PROPERTY – co-ownership of land – sale and distribution of proceeds reflected registered interests on title – no credible evidence of source of funds – no adjustment of interests – just and fair division – Breskvar v Wall (1971) 126 CLR 376, Perpetual Trustees Victoria Ltd v Gheorghui  VSC 412, applied – Property Law Act 1958 ss 228 and 233.
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – principle of finality – res judicata – issue estoppel – Jackson v Goldsmith  HCA 22; (1950) 81 CLR 446, Blair v Curran  HCA 23; (1939) 62 CLR 464, applied.
COSTS – no difference in relative strengths of parties’ claims – equal responsibility for time wasted – each party to bear their own costs.
AMD Resources Ltd v TRS Management Pty Ltd  VSC 202
CORPORATIONS – Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) – application to set aside a statutory demand pursuant to s 459G – whether the statutory demand ought to be set aside for some other reason – s 459J(1)(b) – whether debt is described in the affidavit accompanying the statutory demand adequately or at all – whether the failure to specify adequately or at all is a formal or technical defect to which r 1.7(1) of the Supreme Court (Corporations) Rules 2013 (Vic) applies – whether an invoice is a debt – whether there is a genuine dispute as to existence of the debt – whether conduct constitutes an admission as to the debt – Whether conduct constitutes a promissory estoppel by way of representation – whether there is a genuine dispute that a debt is owed.
Owners Corporation No. 711686W v Sceam Construction Pty Ltd (Costs) (Building and Property)  VCAT 390
COSTS; claim by successful applicant for recovery of the cost of engaging two experts, the cost of an initial investigation by a plumber, the cost of obtaining plans from the local council and the cost of representation by a managing agent at hearings. Expert’s costs allowed in part, investigation costs allowed, but claim for the cost of representation by the managing agent disallowed. he respondent must pay to the applicant costs assessed at $27,858.27.
R & D Health Clubs Pty Ltd v Lin Wang Pty Ltd (Building and Property)  VCAT 349
LANDLORD AND TENANT – COVID-19 Omnibus (Emergency Measures) (Commercial Leases and Licences) Regulations 2020 (the Regulations); Assessment of rent relief - whether a complaint request for rent relief made under reg 10(2) of the Regulations as they existed prior to 29 September 2020 entitles the tenant to claim rent relief after 29 September 2020; whether a fresh request for rent relief is required to be made after 29 September 2020; What constitutes turnover for the purposes of assessing a decline in turnover – whether jobkeeper payments and like payments are to be counted in assessing a tenant’s turnover.
Aronis & Anor v Aronis  QSC 87
REAL PROPERTY – TORRENS TITLE – CAVEATS AGAINST DEALINGS – REMOVAL – PARTICULAR CASES – where the plaintiff seeks a declaration of constructive trust over estate property – where the executor of the estate applies for the removal of a caveat over part of the estate property to permit its sale for the purposes of funding the defence of the claim – where the plaintiff objects to the sale of the property on the basis that it would deprive her of the benefit of receiving the property in specie if successful at trial – whether the caveat should be removed and the sale of the property permitted.
EQUITY – TRUSTS AND TRUSTEES – APPLICATIONS TO COURT FOR ADVICE AND AUTHORITY – APPLICATIONS FOR AUTHORITY NOT CONFERRED BY TRUST INSTRUMENT – OTHER CASES – where the executor of an estate applies for a declaration that she is justified in selling estate property and applying the sale proceeds for the purposes of defending litigation brought against the estate – whether that declaration should be made.
PROCEDURE – CIVIL PROCEEDINGS IN STATE AND TERRITORY COURTS – DISCOVERY AND INTERROGATORIES – DISCOVERY AND INSPECTION OF DOCUMENTS – PRODUCTION AND INSPECTION OF DOCUMENTS – GROUNDS FOR RESISTING INSPECTION – IRRELEVANCE – where the plaintiff seeks orders permitting her to inspect documents the subject of a subpoena issued on her behalf – where the defendant gave written notice of objection to inspection of the documents – where the defendant objects on grounds of irrelevancy – where the documents sought to be inspected are historical medical and dental records of the deceased testator – whether inspection of the documents should be permitted.
Land Title Act 1994 Qld s 127Trusts Act 1973 Qld s 96 Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 Qld r 422B
CMC Property Pty Ltd & Ors v Rankin Investments (Qld) Pty Ltd  QSC 94
INTERPRETATION - GENERAL RULES OF CONSTRUCTION OF INSTRUMENTS - COMMERCIAL AND BUSINESS TRANSACTIONS - PARTICULAR TRANSACTIONS - VALUATIONS - where the applicants apply for declarations as to the proper construction of the terms of a contract styled “Property Agreement” - where the Property Agreement constitutes a joint venture between Rankin Investments (Qld) Pty Ltd (Rankin investments), and Bradley John Rankin (the Rankin parties) and CMC Property Pty Ltd (CMC) and Peter Thomas Kendall (the Kendall parties) to develop the Big Pineapple tourist attraction near Nambour - where the parties are in dispute as to how an expert ought value the interests held by the Rankin parties in the joint venture for the purposes of a compulsory buy-out by the Kendall parties - where the parties jointly appointed Steven Sorbello (Mr Sorbello), a chartered accountant, to value the Rankin parties’ interest in the joint venture - where the parties are in disagreement as to the date which should be used to strike the valuation - whether the appropriate valuation point is a matter to be determined by the expert or whether a specific date as to which the value is to be determined should be set and if so, what that date should be.
Council & Ors; Dexus Funds Management Limited v Fabcot Pty Ltd & Ors  QCA 95
ENVIRONMENT AND PLANNING – ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNING – PLANNING SCHEMES AND INSTRUMENTS – QUEENSLAND – GENERALLY – where the grant of a development permit for a childcare centre, service station, food and drink outlet and shopping centre was sought – where orders were sought that the development be refused – where orders seeking that the development permit be refused were dismissed – where the site the subject of the development permit is within the low-medium density residential zone and within the Smithfield Local Plan – whether approval of the proposed development would compromise the planned role and function of the land – whether the primary judge misinterpreted or misapplied sections 45 and 60 of the Planning Act 2016 (Qld) – whether the primary judge misinterpreted or misapplied the Cairns Plan 2016 – whether the primary judge erred in finding that there was a town planning need for the proposed development – whether the primary judge erred in finding the only non-compliance with the low-medium density residential Zone Code and the Smithfield Local Plan was that the proposed development was not small scale – whether the primary judge erred in concluding that the proposed development complied with section 184.108.40.206(1) of the Cairns Plan 2016 – whether the primary judge erred in dismissing sub-precinct 3b as an obstacle in the path of an approval of a development application – whether the primary judge failed to take into account the hierarchy of shopping centres under the Cairns Plan 2016 – whether the primary judge took into account irrelevant considerations – whether the primary judge prejudged a code assessable development application
Cases to 03 May 2021
Bridgeman Enterprises Pty Ltd v Sunshine Coast Regional Council  QPEC 25
PLANNING AND ENVIRONMENT – DEVELOPMENT CONTROL – CONTROL OF PARTICULAR MATTERS – CONDITIONS – APPEAL AGAINST IMPOSITION OF CONDITIONS – where the appellant seeks to develop land already improved by a shopping centre and other buildings – where the respondent approved the development subject to conditions – where conditions relate to electrical infrastructure – whether the conditions are relevant to and not an unreasonable imposition upon the development – whether the conditions are reasonably required in relation to the development.
Planning Act 2016 Qld s 45, s 60, s 65; Planning and Environment Court Act 2016 Qld s 43, s 45, s 46, s 47
Sunshine Coast Regional Council Planning Scheme 2014 Qld.
Dunlop & Anor v Body Corporate For Port Douglas Queenslander CTS 886 & Ors  QSC 85
PROCEDURE – CIVIL PROCEEDINGS IN STATE AND TERRITORY COURTS – PARTIES AND REPRESENTATION – PROPER OR NECESSARY PARTY AND STANDING – where the first respondent defendant was a body corporate which terminated letting and caretaking agreements with the first applicant plaintiff – where the body corporate’s committee members and its solicitor were included as defendants – whether parts of the statement of claim relating to the body corporate’s committee members and solicitor disclose no reasonable cause of action or are an abuse of process – whether these paragraphs should be struck out.
PROCEDURE – STATE AND TERRITORY COURTS: JURISDICTION, POWERS AND GENERALLY – JURISDICTION – GENERALLY – where the first respondent defendant was a body corporate which terminated letting and caretaking agreements with the first applicant plaintiff – where the dispute had not been pursued before a specialist adjudicator or QCAT – whether the remainder of the claim and statement of claim should be set aside for want of jurisdiction or because the dispute must be remedied before a specialist adjudicator or QCA
Australian Consumer Law 2010 Cth s 18, s 37, s 236
Body Corporate and Community Management (Accommodation Module) Regulation 2008 Qld s 128(1)(c)
Body Corporate and Community Management Act 1997 Qld s 96, s 149B, s 229(2), s 250(2), s 276(1)
Human Rights Act 2019 Qld s 48
Property Occupations Act 2014 Qld s 100
Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2009 Qld s 52
Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 Qld r 16, r 149(1)(b), r 150(1)(j), r 171(1)
Industry Research and Development (Access to Bushfire Construction Standards Program) Instrument 2020
24/04/2020 - This instrument prescribes the Access to Bushfire Construction Standards Program.
Subordinate legislation as made – 30 April 2021
No 36 Nature Conservation and Other Legislation Amendment Regulation 2021
No 37 Queensland Building and Construction Commission and Other Legislation Amendment Regulation 2021
No 38 Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation (COVID-19 Emergency Response) Amendment Regulation 2021
The information in this publication is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavour to provide accurate and timely information, we do not guarantee that the information in this newsletter is accurate at the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future.