Stoush over unpaid subs at fancy Club

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He founded The Club – now members are sour about unpaid subs.

Apartment owners at Queenstown’s The Club on Frankton Road want to liquidate New Zealand Resorts, a company controlled by the complex’s developer Ross Wensley.

A hearing in Invercargill last month gave NZR a December 16 deadline to settle its dues.

Club body corporate chairman Graeme Kruger – ironically a former Wensley executive – says NZR owns seven unsold apartments there.

Problem is, he claims, NZR owes about $43,000 in body corporate fees going back 12 months.

The levies on apartment owners cover common costs like building maintenance, lift and fire system checks – and insurance at $50,000-plus yearly.

NZR is selling off its units and has told the body corporate it will settle outstanding fees on each apartment as it’s sold – and it’s done so, Kruger acknowledges.

But fees should be paid on all NZR apartments whether sold or not, he says.

“I’m disappointed the developer thinks he has the right to choose to pay the fees when he sells the apartments.”
The unpaid money puts extra burden on individual owners including himself, Kruger says.

“It effectively means we’d have to dig into our reserves or spread the unpaid fees for that 12-month period across the other owners – which is unacceptable.”

Members are just ordinary folk. “Some people have had to sell their house to pay their body corp fees.”

The liquidation bid was adjourned at last month’s hearing, Kruger’s lawyer has told him, with the judge getting an email from lender Structured Finance indicating a payment proposal would be finalised within seven days.

Kruger says the body corporate had its AGM last Friday and members are “let down and frustrated” at the lack of payment.

Four firms linked to former Queenstown apartment king Wensley are in liquidation.

Wensley was reluctant to have his say for this story:

“I don’t think it’s necessary I comment on issues like this. [Body corporates] always get the monies at the stage apartments are sold.”

Kruger was general manager of marketing and operations for Wensley Developments for four years until April 2006, when he resigned after a major restructure.

It’s his second run-in with Wensley over The Club since then.

The first was in early 2008 when Kruger withheld settlement on his own Club apartment because of allegedly unfinished work – Wensley pinged him penalty interest. The dispute was later settled.