A property sold by the Meander Valley Council due to the owners not paying rates because they believed the land was owned by God, has been re-sold for a large profit.
The site at Mole Creek was sold on September 1, 2017 for about $120,000, with the council recouping just under $10,000 in rates and the legal fees.
The remainder of the money was then given back to the original owners, the Beerepoot family, who then returned the sale profits to the council in cash, because they believed the money belonged to God.
The man who bought the house from the council claimed the property was stripped of about $50,000 worth of fixtures and fittings.
Meander Valley Council sent the returned funds to the Supreme Court. The funds were sent to the Supreme Court under section 48 of the Trustee Act 1898.
The property was advertised on realestate.com.au as being sold in June for nearly $600,000.
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That is a profit of about $450,000.
"Welcome to paradise," the advertisement from Claridge Realestate said.
"Immaculate property comprising five bedrooms and five bathrooms situated on approximately 6 acres of fertile limestone country.
"The home boasts an owner's residence plus an additional four self-contained units. Opportunity to capitalise on the booming short-stay tourist accommodation. Situated perfectly one-hour drive to Cradle Mountain, one hour from Launceston and Devonport."
The Beerepoot family did not pay their rates for about seven years before the council decided to sell.
After years of negotiations and the required three-year waiting period before enforced sale became an option for council to pursue, in March 2017 the council finally moved to sell the three properties to reclaim $9332 in unpaid rates.
In March this year, the council was cleared by the ombudsman for any wrongdoing.
The ombudsman, Richard Connock, said a disclosure had raised concerns because the sale was well below the market value.
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