Frequently Asked Questions


For most, a property resumption (compulsory acquisition) is a traumatic experience. The iconic Aussie movie “The Castle” is a credible portrayal of the shock and anguish felt by most disposed owners.   The movie had a fairytale ending, however the reality is that most government agencies have powers to compulsory acquire / resume part or all of a property without owners’ consent.

Q: Should I seek professional help?

A: YES … immediately you become aware a resumption acquisition might happen.

Q: Who should I contact?

A: Certified Practicing Valuers who specialise in resumption acquisitions will be able to provide initial advice. A solicitor can also help navigate the legal requirements.

Q: Are professional costs claimable?

A: YES … all reasonable professional costs are claimable as part of compensation. These are typically valuation and legal fees, but can if warranted include accounting, town planning, engineering, etc.

Q: Can an advance payment against compensation be obtained?

A: YES … this does not in any way affect the right to negotiate additional compensation or to have the matter independently determined by a Court.

Q: What is the resumption process?

A: Resuming authorities will often notify an owner of their requirements prior to issuing formal notices. Many will attempt to reach a settlement through a negotiated private treaty. If this is not successful most will proceed to issue formal notices such as a Notice of Intention to Resume.

Q: Can a compulsory acquisition resumption be stopped?

A: Yes, but only in situations where it can be clearly demonstrated that the proposed resumption /compulsory acquisition is not the best public interest. These circumstances are rare.

Q: Do compensation rights also apply to a tenant or lessee?

A: YES … anyone who has an interest in the land has a right to claim.

Q: What is a Lease?

A: A lease is a legally binding contract by which one party conveys land, property, etc. to another for a specified time, in return for a periodic payment subject to conditions.

Q: What are rent reviews?

A: These are usually annual adjustments using three common methods – Consumer Price Index (CPI); Fixed percentage increase or Review to market.

Q: What is a market rental review?

A: This a mechanism to adjust the rent at periodic intervals reflecting changes to market conditions such as supply and demand conditions at the time.

Q: When is a market rent review conducted?

A: It is common for Consumer Price Index (CPI) reviews and percentage-based reviews to be conducted once a year. Market rent reviews are generally only carried out at specific times during the term of the lease. For example, a market rent review may occur every 3-5 years or upon exercising an option for renewal.

Q: What is the process of a market rent review?

A: The first stage of the rental review process starts with the lessor sending a notice to the lessee that proposes a change in the rent. If the lessee approves the new amount, the amount proposed by the landlord is considered to be the current market rent. If, however, there is a disagreement regarding the new amount, the two parties commence negotiations. If the two parties fail to reach an agreement regarding an appropriate rental adjustment, the tenant will usually be entitled to appoint an independent Valuer to help determine a fair rental adjustment. Note: retail leases have specific state-based legislation that regulates the process for carrying out a market rent review.

Q: How is a lease dispute resolved?

A: Most retail leases are subject to relevant State legislation where an Administrative Tribunal administers a Retail Leases Act.

Non-retail commercial leases are usually subject to other State legislation such as a Property Law Act.

Q: How can dispute costs be minimized?

A: Seek early advice from an experienced lease consultant like ourselves before it escalates into a formal property dispute.

Q: What is a Property Valuation?

A: This is an assessment of market value undertaken by a Certified Practicing Valuer accredited by the Australian Property Institute, or Australian Valuers Institute and in some locations, must be Registered by the relevant State Board.

Q: What is a market appraisal?

A: This is an estimate of selling price usually provided by a real estate agent. It is not a Valuation and will not be accepted by financial institutions or government agencies as evidence of value.

Q: Are the different Valuation methods?

A: Yes, the three most common methods of Valuation are:

  • Direct Comparison with comparable sales possessing similar characteristics – mostly used in valuing residential land, houses and units
  • Capitalization of Net Income – mostly used in valuing commercial and industrial property
  • Hypothetical Development / DCF- mostly used in valuing development property & projects
Q: What does a Valuation report contain?

A: There are three main components:

  • A detailed description of the property to be valued
  • Comparable market data and transactions
  • Correlation and rationalisation of those to arrive at a reasoned conclusion
Q: How much do Valuations cost?

A: This will naturally depend on the complexity of the task and the type of property. A simple residential land valuation may be as low as $400.

Q: How long does it take?

A: Simple residential valuations can be done in a few days, while more complicated commercial /industrial assessments can take a week or two.

Q: How long is a valuation report valid for?

A: Most government agencies and financial institutions will accept valuation reports up to three months old, and in some cases up to six months.