First Right of Refusal

The First Right of Refusal (FROR) process allows former owners of Mr Fluffy houses to return to - and rebuild on - their remediated block. All eligible homeowners were given the option to be First Right Holders.

First Right Holders do not need to compete at public auction to buy back their block. This is a significant purchasing advantage as remediated blocks that go to public auction will not sell for less than the valuation price offered to the former owners. The first public auctions for remediated blocks were held in April 2016.

The Taskforce sent out its first offer packs to 14 First Right Holders in May 2016. Offers will continue to roll out as the demolition and resale programs continue.

Valuations for First Right Holders

The Land Development Agency (LDA) seeks two professionally recommended, independent valuations to inform the market value of remediated blocks. In most cases, the selling price is no less than the highest of the valuations.

The Taskforce aims to commence the valuations process for FROR holders in the six month window prior to the scheduled demolition of an affected property. However, the Legislative Assembly process for Territory Plan Variation 343 delayed this from occurring until the legislative process was complete. Work is now underway to deliver valuations as soon as possible to owners of these properties.

Offer process

Once the Taskforce receives the independent valuations from the LDA on the remediated block, the Taskforce sends a letter of offer to the First Right Holder. The First Right Holder has 30 working days to respond, advising whether they wish to purchase their remediated block.

If the First Right Holder chooses to purchase the block, the Taskforce prepares a Contract of Sale. First Right Holders then have 60 working days from issue of the Contract of Sale to exchange.

If the former owners elect not to pursue their FROR to return and rebuild, the remediated blocks go to public auction.

Documents for First Right Holders

Support and resources

Homeowners are encouraged to access support services that can assist them in the significant decision to repurchase their Remediated Block and rebuild their home.

Throughout the process, the Personal Support Team will be available to provide information and guide you through the process and decision points.

Homeowners might like to consider:

  • discussing their options with close family and friends
  • accessing an independent solicitor who can provide advice and guidance
  • engaging a financial advisor, who can help them make an informed financial decision
  • discussing their plans with a bank or financial institution.

The following resources may assist in the decision making process:

Financial advice

ASIC 'MoneySmart' Financial Guidance: Tips and tools to assist you in making financial decisions - https://www.moneysmart.gov.au.

Care Inc: Provides free financial counseling services including information, support and advocacy - 1800 007 007 - http://www.carefcs.org.

The Australian Government's Department of Human Services 'Financial Information Service' is a free, confidential service that provides financial information and support - 132 300.

A list of banks and financial institutions providing support to Mr Fluffy homeowners can be found on the Taskforce website.

Legal advice

Legal Aid ACT: A free service that helps people in the ACT with their legal problems, especially people who are socially or economically disadvantaged - 1300 654 314.

The ACT Law Society: 'Find a Lawyer' search function available on the website:https://www.actlawsociety.asn.au.

Personal support

Lifeline (24 hours) - 13 11 14

Beyond Blue - 1300 224 636

Capital Health Network (Medicare Local) New Access program - face to face / phone coaching service for those experiencing mild to moderate anxiety or depression 6287 8066

Asbestos Response Taskforce Support - www.asbestostaskforce.act.gov.au/voluntary-buyback-and-support.

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