Elderly couple’s beach house sale nightmare

AN ELDERLY Cassowary Coast couple hopeful of a sale of their Wongaling Beach home to Mayfair 101 have copped a loss of $75,000 and endured a protracted battle to take back control of the property.

In April, owners of a four bedroom home on Pacific View Drive in Wongaling Beach made the decision to sell to Mainland Property Group, a subsidiary of Mayfair 101.

The property owners, who asked not to be named, sold furniture worth $80,000 for "next to nothing" and bought a motorhome with plans to travel around Australia. 

The Pacific View Drive house remains for sale at $75,000 less than what the owners paid in 2010.
The Pacific View Drive house remains for sale at $75,000 less than what the owners paid in 2010.

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The sale contract for the property went unconditional.

"And then the thing fell through and we have (had) to borrow money to pay off the motorhome," the property owner said. "They were supposed to pay for it in April."

The Federal Court ordered the appointment of provisional liquidators to M101 Nominees in September for alleged breaches of the Corporations Act, which effectively put a freeze on pending transactions.

A receiver's sale has been announced for six homes and eight vacant lots in Mission Beach and Wongaling Beach.
A receiver's sale has been announced for six homes and eight vacant lots in Mission Beach and Wongaling Beach.

The penny dropped for the homeowners that finalisation of the sale would be unlikely.

Provisional liquidators McGrathNicol stepped in to offload Mainland assets in ­August.

Cairns-based conveyancer Lee Williams said usually if a buyer defaults on a contract, the deposit is forfeited, but terminating the deal is usually straightforward.

"Once it's terminated (they) can sell it again," he said.

"The lawyer may have to give notice to the administrators then they have to terminate that contact."

The property owner said Mainland Group strung them along promising each month the money would come through and refused to allow a release from the contract to allow the property's resale.

"I feel like I have been ripped off," the property owner said.

In 2010 the house sold for $530,000. It is now listed with RE/MAX Cairns at a "fire sale price" of $455,000.

"It's a bit of a bad situation," the seller said.

"It's going to make it harder to sell our property when there is 300 properties on the market."

Originally published as Elderly couple's beach house sale nightmare


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