Sun sets on dream build

By Esther Lauaki

Dozens of landowners fear they could lose thousands of dollars if a developer reneges on sales contracts for Rockbank properties.

Development at The Millstone estate has been stalled since land was released for stages one and two in 2016. Buyers signed off-the-plan contracts for blocks at the Greigs Road development expecting the land to be titled in August this year.

But they were last week informed by Queensland-based developer CFMG Capital that construction would be delayed until March next year – two months after sunset clauses in their contracts expire.

Under current law, sunset clauses can be exploited, with construction delays leading to termination of signed contracts of sale. Developers can then re-sell properties for higher prices.

Nostra Homes managing director Anthony Caruana, who purchased five lots within Millstone and sold them on, has sought legal advice because he said that there was no assurance that CFMG Capital would let buyers keep their land.

“The developer has not agreed to extend the sunset clause and has informed myself and many mums and dads that the land won’t be ready until March, 2019,” Mr Caruana said.

“This would then result in many people losing their blocks. Mums and dads are all protesting on site for the developer to extend their sunset clause. Many people will not be able to purchase another block due to the growth in the pocket … [they] will pretty much lose their dreams.”

Another landowner, who asked not to be named, said he stood to lose more than $200,000.

“The reason I bought there was that my wife was pregnant and I wanted to make a good investment for my son and our little family,” he told

Star Weekly. “I chose to buy two lots, then encouraged our friends and family to buy lots. They are all in different positions to me … some of them first home buyers, some downsizing.

“I paid $99,000 for my land and it’s now worth $200,000.”

The landowner said he had already spent $50,000 in builder fees in addition to the $5000 deposit.

“They’ve been stringing us along for more than a year. I’ve been renting and I sold my family home waiting for my house to be built … all for nothing.”

A CFMG Capital spokesman said it is working towards the completion and settlement of all contracted lots at The Millstone.

“The project has encountered a series of unexpected technical and engineering challenges and we are continuing to work with our contractors to resolve the issues in a timely manner,” a statement read.

“As with all developers, CFMG Capital is bound by the Sale of Land Amendment Bill 2018 regarding off-the-plan contract sales.”