A3. Down Under

And he looked around, and there by his head was a cake of bread baked over hot coals, and a jar of water.

The owner Voukelatos signs a contract with the tenant Grant’s company to do rectification works at 39 Glebe Point Road and instructs his agent not to evict the tenant until works have been completed.

The tenant’s lawyer repeats that the landlord and not the tenant is liable to do the structural work.

The agent repossesses the property and the tenant applies to the Tribunal to regain access. The Tribunal sets a hearing date for 2 April 2001 and restores the tenant’s access until then.

The lawyers for the owner and the tenant try to negotiate a mutual release from the lease.

The tenant’s lawyer claims no further rent is payable, but the owner’s lawyer replies that rent is payable until 28 April and the tenant has to sign a building contract to repair the defective wall.

The owner asks his lender for a rent reprieve until he finds a new tenant for the property.

The lawyer’s owner Casimatis advises the owner that Council requires the rectification works to be finished soon. He suggests the owner lodge a counter claim in the Tribunal seeking repayment of back rent and costs from the tenant Grant.

The owner asks the agent to find a building contractor to do the underpinning works on the property and suggests he use the earlier report from the civil engineer Johnston to circumvent Council’s order and avoid the repair.

The owner instructs the agent to spend as little as possible on advertising for a new tenant and reminds them that both previous tenants which they had chosen had lost him “a lot of money”.

The owner engages Carino to be his agent in lieu of LJ Hooker Glebe, whom he dubs “slack”. LJ Hooker says that description of them is “a slap in the face” and advise further repairs to the property and a well-funded advertising budget for tenant search.

LJ Hooker Glebe receives offers from several prospective tenants.

On 18 December 2001 Council’s Compliance Department inspects the property with the owner Voukelatos who has recently arrived back in Australia from Greece.

The owner tenders the earlier report of the “structural engineer” Johnston recommending that “no underpinning of the south wall is required as the wall cracking is more aesthetic than structural”.

On 7 January 2002 Council accepts that “on Phillip Johnston’s advice Council will no longer pursue the structural upgrading of the building”.

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A3. Down Under 

15. 2000 – Landlord to repair

Owner Voukelatos instructs LJ Hooker not to evict tenant Grant until the latter completes works on the wall.

Owner signs rectification works contract with Grant’s company Advanced Underpinnings and pays deposit.

LJ Hooker advises Grant his rent is in arrears and that he has not paid insurance.

Grant’s lawyer, Levitt, tells Casimatis that Grant only agreed to carry out refurbishment and renovations, not structural work, and he adds that “the Landlord is required to repair the damage”.

16. 2000 – Lock out 2: Grant

Owner’s lawyer, Casimatis, denies claims made by tenant Grant’s lawyer Levitt that the tenant was required to carry out refurbishment and renovations but not structural work.

Ketas of LH Hooker repossesses 39 Glebe Point Road. Levitt applies to Tribunal for Grant to regain access.

The Tribunal hearing is set for 2 April 2001. Tribunal orders temporary restoration of tenant’s access until hearing date.

On 30 March 2001, Casimatis informs Levitt, “Subject to the directions that may be made by the Tribunal, our clients propose to re-enter and repossess the subject premises immediately after the hearing”.

17. 2001 – In a year or two

Lawyers for the owner Voukelatos and for tenant Grant negotiate mutual release from their lease.

Owner mulls rebuilding whole of 39 Glebe Point Road “in a year or two”.

Meantime he tries to find a new tenant and considers suing Grant for unpaid rent and for costs and fees.

18. 2001 – Tribunal Grant

The lawyers of the owner Voukelatos advise him Council still requires rectification works done and may lose patience if not done soon.

They suggest he lodge a counter-claim with the Tribunal against the tenant Grant, asking for payment of back rent.

LH Hooker receives applications from prospective new tenants for 39 Glebe Point Road.

Voukelatos v. Grant proceedings in Tribunal are discontinued.

19. 2001 – To avoid the repair

The owner Voukelatos asks the agent Ketas, of LJ Hooker, to locate a building contractor to do the underpinning works at 39 Glebe Point Road.

Agent suggests owner use the earlier report issued by Johnston, a civil engineer, to circumvent Council’s rectification order and “avoid the repair”.

The owner specifies a “shoestring” advertising budget for the new tenant search.

He reminds LJ Hooker they chose both previous tenants and that he had “lost a lot of money on both of these people”. He adds “Let’s hope the next tenant will be different” and wonders if “things would have been any worse without any agent involved”.

20. 2001 – A Slap in the face

The owner Voukelatos delays presenting Johnston’s earlier report to Council until the report is reviewed by his lawyers.

He seeks to find a new tenant but asks Carino to be his agent in lieu of LJ Hooker whose services he describes as having been “slack”. LJ Hooker describes Voukelatos’ description as a “slap in the face”.

LJ Hooker continues to advise repairs for 39 Glebe Point Road to avoid it becoming derelict and a well-funded advertising campaign.

21. 2001 – Emergency Order 1

Jack Grant signs a lease on 39 Glebe Point Road and plans to add doors and windows to the side wall.

A survey commissioned by Grant finds “a bend and encroachment of 0.14m of the sidewall and an encroachment of 0.17m of the front wall”. It recommends that the southern external wall be underpinned and that steel columns and beams be installed to stiffen the building.

Council issues Voukelatos, the building’s owner, with an Emergency Order to repair the building and make structural repairs due to the building being a danger to the public.