NSW Parliament Introduces a Statutory Duty of Care for Residential Building Work

In Brookfield Multiplex Ltd v Owners Corporation Strata Plan 61288 (2014) 313 ALR 408, the High Court found that a builder did not owe a common law duty of care to the developer of residential apartment buildings or its successors in title (including an owners corporation) for economic loss caused by defective work. The High […]

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The Residential Apartment Buildings Act: 5 Things You Need to Know

Recent reports of structural defects in high-rise apartments including the Opal tower and Mascot tower have undermined public confidence in the quality of construction work carried out in New South Wales. It has also raised questions as to avenues open to property owners to seek redress for defective work and the enforcement powers available to […]

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Owners Corporation Fees – How to recover when the lot owner fails to pay

In the current economic climate many lot owners may find it financially challenging to pay owners corporation fees. This can be problematic for an Owners Corporation where cash flow is crucial in order to fund the ongoing cost of maintaining the common property. Initiating the fee recovery process The Owners Corporation Act 2006 (Vic) (the […]

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Developer loses appeal against refusal for overdevelopment of land for retirement village

In GTH Resorts No 5 Pty Ltd v Gold Coast City Council [2020] QPEC 2020, the Planning and Environment Court was required to determine whether a proposed retirement village was an overdevelopment of the land and, if so, were there relevant grounds to justify approval despite the overdevelopment. The land the subject of the proposed […]

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Landowners win against council in rating categorisation dispute

In a major win for the owners of two Bunnings warehouses in Ipswich, the Court of Appeal has held that the Ipswich City Council wrongly categorised their properties for rating purposes. The decision highlights the financial impact, as well as the difficulties, that can arise in applying differential rating categories to land. The long running […]

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What weight should be given to a draft Planning Scheme or Planning Scheme Amendment?

A proposed amendment to a planning scheme may have drastic consequences for the development potential of land, particularly where land is proposed to be ‘down zoned’ or a more restrictive overlay constraint is proposed. There are a number of key issues which need careful consideration in terms of appropriately timing development in light of a […]

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COVID-19 | WA Code of Conduct provides guidance on rent relief obligations for WA landlords and tenants during the COVID-19 pandemic

The long awaited Commercial Tenancies (COVID-19 Response) Regulations 2020 (WA) have now been released and include a Code of Conduct (Code of Conduct) which gives effect to the National Cabinet Mandatory Code of Conduct and sets out a number of principles that landlords and tenants must follow during the COVID-19 pandemic. Which tenancies will the […]

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COVID-19 | Electronic deeds valid in Queensland

What are the changes? Under Queensland law, prior to 22 May 2020, a deed was required to be in paper, signed under seal and in the case of an individual their signature was required to be witnessed. These requirements have been modified from 22 May 2020 until 31 December 2020 for all forms of deed […]

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COVID-19 | Executing Documents Electronically and Serving under the Security of Payment Act

The Australian construction and property industry is experiencing unprecedented uncertainty in respect of COVID-19. Practical challenges arise in relation to executing, lodging and serving documents by traditional means. Executing and lodging formal documents electronically The Australian states and territories have dealt with electronic signature and electronic lodgement differently. A summary of the electronic signing of […]

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Off the plan sales and changes to the property

Can the purchaser of an apartment off the plan terminate the contract because the carspace allocated to the lot contained a PWD symbol? Perhaps surprisingly the issue was recently considered by the Supreme Court of New South Wales[1].  The decision provides a useful reminder of the principles which apply to variations between contract and settlement. […]

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Real estate agent email hacked but buyer pays the price

If you have bought or sold a property recently, you probably received a warning about relying on emails directing you to pay money to a particular bank account without first checking with the sender that the email has not been altered. Given the amount of money involved, real estate transactions are a prime target for […]

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COVID-19 | Update: Changes to foreign investment framework and implications for the commercial leasing sector

Further to our previous article regarding changes to the foreign investment framework and the implications for the commercial leasing sector, on 24 April 2020 the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) released a guidance note which, among other things, provides clarification as to the effect of the temporary measures which result from the Foreign Acquisitions and […]

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