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Inside track: Property & Real Estate

31 May 2021

#Property, Planning & Development

Inside track: Property & Real Estate

In the media


HIA: A record year of house building is underway
A record number of detached housing starts will occur in the 12 months to September 2021 with more than 146,000 detached houses commencing construction. This is more than 20 per cent higher than the peak of the previous boom in 2018 (20 May 2021).  More...

Treasury Laws Amendment (Measures for Consultation) Bill 2021: Exempting granny flat arrangements from Capital Gains Tax
The Law Council supports in-principle the release of the exposure draft of the Treasury Laws Amendment (Measures for Consultation) Bill 2021: Exempting granny flat arrangements from Capital Gains Tax (13 May 2021).  More...

Lending platform CrowdProperty enters Australia’s property development market
The UK-based specialist property project online lending platform CrowdProperty has expanded its international footprint, announcing the launch of CrowdProperty Australia, to offer a non-bank lending alternative to the SME property development market (18 May 2021).  More...

Sour relations between Beijing and Canberra dampen mainland Chinese investment in Australian property market
Investment in Australian property from both state-owned and private enterprises in China fell 29 per cent in 2020, and is on the decline again this year; with investments declining by 29 per cent in 2020, according to data from Real Capital Analytics (18 May 2021).  More...

Building expert says Australians can benefit from European fire safety practices
The presentation from Modern Building Alliance Executive Chair Quentin de Hults at the Australian Modern Building Alliance’s Fire Safety 2021 Conference & Tradeshow saw European data presented to Australian building personnel that highlighted seven layers of fire safety in buildings (13 May 2021).  More...

Budget invests in jobs and growth for Australia's north
The Coalition Government is injecting over $1.42 billion directly into northern Australia to help boost jobs and economic growth as the nation recovers from the impacts of COVID-19. The north will further benefit from a suite of national budget measures (12 May 2021).  More...

A resilient Australia is a sustainable Australia, says nation’s green building authority
A $15.2 billion boost for infrastructure, new agencies to enhance resilience and climate research, and $1.2 billion for green technology are among the measures welcomed by Green Building Council of Australia (12 May 2021).  More...

PCA: Budget reveals population growth as biggest constraint on economy
The property industry has commended the Federal Government on the continued strong management of Australia’s remarkable economic recovery, but flagged that population growth was clearly the biggest constraint on recovery (11 May 2021).  More...

REIA welcomes property and small business focus in Budget 2021
The Real Estate Institute of Australia has had many of its priorities addressed in the 2021 Federal Budget confirming a positive outlook for buyers, sellers, investors and tenants (11 May 2021).  More...


Unlocking the city’s economic prosperity beyond recovery
The City of Melbourne is aiming to become one of the best cities on the globe for attracting businesses and jobs of the future, while also supporting key traditional strengths such as international education and tourism (19 May 2021).  More...

Delivering In Fishermans Bend
A $179.4 million funding package from the Victorian Government will kick-start the Fishermans Bend Innovation Precinct, with Stage One being delivered by Development Victoria. This first step will involve remediation of the 32-hectare GMH site – an area equal to 15 MCGs – and the installation of crucial infrastructure and services to make an investment-ready precinct (17 May 2021).  More...

Property industry slams tax hikes as blow to jobs, investment, and homeownership dreams of Victorians
The Property Council of Australia has condemned the Andrews Government’s plan to slug Victorian homeowners, homebuyers and investors with additional land tax, stamp duty and a new tax on property investment and development (15 May 2021).  More...

Homes Victoria board announced
The Andrews Labor Government has announced the new board for Homes Victoria – the agency delivering the single biggest investment in social and affordable housing in Australia’s history (14 May 2021).  More...

Helping vulnerable Victorians stay warm, and cool, for less
Victoria’s most vulnerable residents will be warmer in winter and cooler in summer thanks to rebates of $1,000 from the Andrews Labor Government to replace old heaters with energy-efficient reverse-cycle air conditioners in homes managed by community housing organisations (10 May 2021).  More...

More than $260m pledged to help bring life back to Melbourne's centre
Diners will be able to claim up to $100 back when eating out in the city, and millions of dollars will be spent renewing central spaces (09 May 2021).  More...


Regional Councils plug into e-Planning
Councils in regional areas will benefit from $4.8 million in grants to help them process development applications online (18 May 2021).  More...


Come spend Friday in the City
The Property Council of Australia is delighted to announce Fridays in the City. To attract city workers back to the office on Fridays, building owners, managers and retailers will be providing unique offerings, deals and activities in their buildings throughout the campaign (20 May 2021).  More...

West End bridge lands on developer’s doorstop
One of two new green bridges linking Brisbane's West End will link with a site that sold this year for $43.5 million and is primed for a major development project (20 May 2021).  More...

Old Burleigh Theatre Arcade project approved, last-minute requests rejected
A high-rise residential tower on the site of a historic building in Burleigh Heads has been given the green light by council, despite a late attempt to change the plans (18 May 2021).  More...

Spit $93.6 million proposal means hundreds more jobs
Gold Coast will soon welcome an almost $94 million luxury development, that will support more than 400 new jobs at the iconic Southport Spit (18 May 2021).  More...

Developer announced for $90m Gold Coast precinct
A $93.6-million mixed-use project for the centre of a masterplanned redevelopment of one of the Gold Coast’s most controversial locations has been approved by the Gold Coast City Council (18 May 2021).  More...

Cross River Rail requests more hours, more trucks for Brisbane CBD sites on Sundays
A Cross River Rail proposal to send up to 20 heavy trucks per hour to and from its central Brisbane station construction sites on Sundays has met strong opposition from Brisbane City Council (13 May 2021).  More...

Brisbane City Council gives derelict Lamb House site permanent protection from development
The Kangaroo Point riverfront site of derelict heritage-listed mansion Lamb House has been permanently protected from development, with Brisbane City Council formally approving planning legislation changes (11 May 2021).  More...

Number of COVID-19 rental protections to remain in Queensland
The Queensland government has revealed an extension of several of its temporary regulatory measures to 30 September 2021. According to the state government, “this will mean Queensland remains ready to respond to COVID-19 risks as we transition back to normal residential tenancy arrangements” (11 May 2021).  More...

Subdued office occupancy underpins need to support CBD
The latest results of the Property Council’s office occupancy survey show that Brisbane’s CBD activity levels have remained flat during April, as the Property Council ramps up efforts to encourage workers to return to the city (11 May 2021).  More...

In practice and courts


Law Council of Australia Submissions
19 May 2021— Law Council
In the Law Council’s view, the existing enforcement measures under the Electronic Conveyancing National Law of suspension or termination are too limited, particularly in mandated eConveyancing jurisdictions.  More...

Industry-led roadmap introduces actions for safe and quality insulation installations
A broad coalition of insulation, building and energy efficiency organisations released a joint Roadmap for quality control and safety in insulation installation to ensure that insulation is installed following best practice processes for quality control and safety. The roadmap sets out a series of actions to ensure that insulation is installed following best practice processes for quality control and safety (18 May 2021).

Announcements, Draft Policies and Plans released 2021


Moreton Says Survey
Moreton Bay Regional Council has released a series of surveys to get insights about things that matter to the community. This is an opportunity for those who live, work and play in the Moreton Bay Region to share their views and experiences. The Moreton Says survey, known as the Anchor survey, is now open and will close 13 June 2021.

Consultation open: Retirement Villages
The Queensland Government has opened consultation on the draft amendment regulation for minimum financial standards and for proposed changes to standardised residents’ contracts.
To view the draft regulation for minimum standards for financial reporting and budgeting, please click here.
To view the consultation paper for standardised residents’ contracts, please click here.
Feedback on both pieces of proposed regulation is due on June 15 and can be made via the following email:

Land Court launches Procedural Assistance Service
The Land Court has launched a dedicated Procedural Assistance Service website to assist self-represented litigants in the court (12 May 2021).  More...

Place Names – Current proposals
Job number 19-027: Yaraka
Closing date for comments: 16 July 2021

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


Gardiner v Attorney-General (No 4) [2021] VSC 290
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – temporary stay of proceeding pending determination of related Federal Court proceeding, concerning validity of registration of indigenous land use agreement under Native Title Act 1993 (Cth) – Federal Court proceeding now concluded – Registration of indigenous land use agreement set aside – whether proceeding should be further stayed pending reconsideration of application to register agreement – no abuse of process – proceeding to be listed for trial – Native Title Act 1993 (Cth), ss 24CK, 203BE(5), 251A.

WOTCH Inc v VicForests (No 8) [2021] VSC 268
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE — application to vary interlocutory injunctions — timber harvesting operations in State forests — material change of circumstances — whether regeneration burning contemplated when orders made — obligation to regenerate harvested coupes under Code of Practice for Timber Production 2014 — risk of regeneration burning to threatened species and habitat — no material change of circumstances — enforcement of orders not unjust — Sustainable Forests (Timber) Act 2004 (Vic), s 3.

Head, Transport for Victoria v Lantrak Developments Pty Ltd [2021] VSC 259
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – application to join respondent to proceeding referred to Court under s 80(b), Land Acquisition and Compensation Act 1986 (Vic) – whether any ‘disputed claim’ by proposed new respondent – where acquiring authority agreed that joint claim could be made out of time, but no claim was made – joinder application refused – Rizzo v Head, Transport for Victoria [2020] VSC 89 – Land Acquisition and Compensation Act 1986 (Vic) – ss 31, 33, 35, 37, 80, 89, 106, 107.

Splend Pty Ltd v Dickinson Cadd Investments Pty Ltd (Building and Property) [2021] VCAT 476
RETAIL LEASES – preliminary question – has the lease terminated? - interpretation of terms of settlement – interaction between terms of settlement and sections 21 and 94 of the Retail Leases Act 2003 (Vic) – sections 28 and 64 of the Retail Leases Act 2003 (Vic) and the notice requirements – construction of the terms of settlement and whether they amount to notice under the Retail Leases Act 2003 (Vic).

Auslong v Morey [2021] VSC 250
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW — applications for leave to appeal on questions of law from VCAT orders of separate members — joint venture agreement (JVA) to develop land co-owned by applicant company and respondent individual — first member refused application to stay or strike out (and refer to County Court) respondent’s proceeding seeking order for sale or division of land — whether failure to give sufficient weight to existence of applicant’s extant County Court proceeding raising same issues and seeking specific performance, which relief VCAT lacked power to grant — second (senior) member ordered sale of land and made other facilitative orders — whether failure to give sufficient weight to contractual rights in JVA inconsistent with orders — whether grounds truly questions of law or just complaints about weight given to relevant matters — grounds treated as if were complaints that impugned orders not open — no real prospects of success on appeal — one extension of time granted; other refused — one application for leave to appeal refused; other granted but appeal dismissed — Property Law Act 1958 (Vic), Part IV; Partnership Act 1958 (Vic), s 6; Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 1998 (Vic), ss 77 & 148.

Advanced Composting Technology Australasia Pty Ltd v Environment Protection Authority [2021] VCAT 448
Review of decision to refuse to issue a works approval. Section 33 Environment Protection Act 1970. Static pile composting of organics wastes. Whether proposal is best practice in the composting of medium and high risk organic wastes. Whether proposal is consistent with relevant State Environment Protection Policies and principles of environment protection.

CMC Property Pty Ltd & Ors v Rankin Investments (Qld) Pty Ltd (No 2) [2021] QSC 103
PROCEDURE - CIVIL PROCEEDINGS IN STATE AND TERRITORY COURTS - COSTS where the parties were developing land together through a joint venture company and trust - where one party secured a declaration after a trial that it had acquired the right to buy the other parties’ interest as valued by a Chartered Accountant - where the unsuccessful party appealed against that judgment - where the applicants sought a declaration that the date at which the Chartered Accountant should value the property was the date the right to acquire the interest arose - where the other party defended the application proposing different constructions of the Property Agreement - where one of those constructions prevailed - whether that party had been successful such as to justify costs of the application or whether its costs should depend upon the outcome of the appeal Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 Qld r 681, r 684.

Williams v Brisbane City Council [2021] QPEC 26
PLANNING AND ENVIRONMENT – APPEAL – appeal against refusal of a code assessable development application for a preliminary approval for building work to facilitate demolition of a pre-1947 house – whether the subject house contributed to the traditional building character of the part of the street within the Traditional Building Character Overlay – whether demolition would result in loss of traditional building character – where building set further back from the street and at a lower elevation relative to the street than the other buildings of traditional building character – where main design features expressed to the river frontage, rather than the street frontage – where potential views from the street to the house limited and affected by long standing vegetation. Planning Act 2016 Qld s 60.

Thorne Developments Pty Ltd v Laird [2021] QSC 90
PROCEDURE - CIVIL PROCEEDINGS IN STATE AND TERRITORY COURTS - PLEADINGS - FORM OF PLEADING - OTHER MATTERS - AMENDING PLEADING - where the plaintiff company Thorne Developments Pty Ltd (Thorne Developments) seeks to amend its claim and its third further amended statement of claim - where Mr Bradley Thorne is the sole director of Thorne Developments - where the application is opposed - where Transparent Enterprises Pty Ltd (Transparent Enterprises) operated an adult entertainment club in Mackay and planned to expand to Brisbane and Townsville - where Thorne Developments owned one half of the issued share capital in Transparent Enterprises - where the third defendant, Mr Graham Laird, owned the balance of the issued shares in Transparent Enterprises - where Mr Laird and Mr Thorne were the sole directors of Transparent Enterprises - where in September 2011 the regulatory authorities notified Transparent Enterprises its liquor licenses would be discontinued if Mr Thorne held any interest in the company - where an agreement was reached between Mr Laird, Mr Thorne and Mr Williamson, the fourth defendant who controlled Rick Williamson Investments Pty Ltd, the second defendant, to relinquish Mr Thorne’s interest in Transparent Enterprises - where two contracts were then executed by the parties to effect the agreement; firstly, a Share Sale Agreement and secondly, a Loan Agreement - where Mr Laird and Mr Williamson provided guarantees of performance under the Share Sale Agreement - where, at the time of these proceedings, the repayments due under the Loan Agreement had not been made - where Thorne Developments submit that the intention of the Share Sale Agreement has been effected - where Thorne Developments seeks to recover the monies owed under the terms of the Share Sale Agreement, the Loan Agreement and the guarantee - where the defendants counterclaim for the monies paid for the shares to date pursuant to the terms of the Share Sale Agreement, Loan Agreement and guarantee on the basis that Thorne Developments had no capacity to sell the shares in Transparent Enterprises - where the plaintiff seeks leave to amend its pleadings to abandon allegations and claims made in earlier versions - where, if given leave, Thorne Developments intends to plead causes of action for which the limitation period has expired - whether the plaintiff should be given leave to amend its pleadings
CONTRACTS - GENERAL CONTRACTUAL PRINCIPLES - ILLEGAL AND VOID CONTRACTS - EFFECT OF ILLEGALITY OR INVALIDITY - IN GENERAL - where in December 2011, three months prior to the execution of the Share Sale Agreement and the Loan Agreement, Thorne Developments was deregistered pursuant to the relevant provisions of the Corporations Act 2001 - where in September 2013, Thorne Developments was reinstated pursuant to the relevant provisions of the Corporations Act 2001 - where Thorne Developments seeks that the court validate the contractual arrangements entered into during the period of deregistration - whether the court should validate the Share Sale Agreement and Loan Agreement. Corporations Act 2001 Cth s 601AB, s 601AH; Uniform Civil Procedure Rules 1999 Qld r 375, r 376.

Tycho Pty Ltd & Anor v Trustworthy Nominees Pty Ltd & Ors [2021] QSC 95
REAL PROPERTY - TORRENS TITLE - INDEFEASIBILITY OF TITLE - EXCEPTIONS TO INDEFEASIBILITY - FRAUD OR FORGERY - AGAINST REGISTERED PROPRIETOR - where the first plaintiff, Tycho Pty Ltd (Tycho), and the second plaintiff, Raymond Leslie Vincent (Mr Vincent), seek summary judgment against the first defendant, Trustworthy Nominees Pty Ltd (Trustworthy), and the second defendant, the Registrar of Titles - where Mr Vincent is the sole director of Tycho - where Tycho is the registered proprietor of 23 lots of land at Maryvale near Warrick - where, in May 2017, Tycho entered into contracts with Irongrown Corporation Pty Ltd to sell the land in Maryvale - where there exists a document purporting to be a mortgage by Tycho encumbering 21 of the 23 lots to Trusthworthy - where Mr Vincent denies signing the purported mortgage - where the plaintiffs and defendants conceded that the mortgage is a forgery - where fraud is an exception to indefeasibility except where registration is obtained by an innocent third party - where AJ Lawyers, the first third party, and Mark Madafferi (Mr Madafferi), the third defendant by counterclaim, seek exemption from being bound by any determination as between Tycho and Trustworthy as to the validity of the mortgage - where AJ Lawyers and Mr Madafferi submit that, if the mortgage is found to be a forgery, then an issue estoppel may arise and seek orders preventing that occurring - where Tycho seeks orders requiring the Registrar of Titles to correct the register and remove the mortgage - where, in the alternative, Tycho seeks compensation from the third defendant, the State of Queensland, if the mortgage is not removed from the register - whether the purported mortgage is a forgery - whether Trustworthy breached s 11A(2) of the Land Title Act 1994; Evidence Act 1977 Qld s 91; Land Title Act 1994 Qld ss 11A, 184, 185, 187.
Supreme Court Rules 1971 Qld O 18, O18A, O19.



Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility Amendment (Extension and Other Measures) Bill 2021
Senate 13/05/2021 - Amends the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility Act 2016 to: Extend the investment time period of the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) by five years to 30 June 2026; expand the functions of the NAIF to include the provision of financial assistance to projects that contribute to Northern Australia's economic and population growth; and amend certain governance and administrative processes of the NAIF.


Bills Updated

Nature Conservation and Other Legislation (Indigenous Joint Management - Moreton Island) Amendment Bill 2020
Stage reached: 2nd reading adjourned on 12/05/2021 Assent Date: 20/05/2021 Commences: Date of Assent
The primary policy objective of the Bill is to provide for the joint management of protected areas on Moreton Island (Mulgumpin).

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.

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