Villa victims join the fray


More owners at Queens­­­town’s Heritage Villas are banding together to block bankrupt developer Rod Nielsen profiting from the sale of their management rights. 

Duncan Brown, a villa owner and local realtor leading the charge, claims owners of 28 of the 36 Heritage units now support his battle. 

The Brown brigade is trying to stop Little Rock Management – a company Nielsen legally retains a half-share in – from selling the management rights. 

Property sources say the rights could fetch anywhere between $250,000-$800,000. 

Many villa owners are up in arms over potentially being left in the lurch with a $500,000 bill for landscaping required under the complex’s resource consent. 

Queenstown Lakes District Council is pursuing individual owners for the landscaping, after Nielsen’s company went broke and the developer himself was bankrupted for almost $17 million. 

Brown also says owners of 13 villas, including himself, have now sent formal letters warning they’ll term-inate their Little Rock management agreements if they don’t get audited accounts as their contracts call for. 

Someone purporting to be Nielsen has emailed Mountain Scene saying owners have always had the option of getting audited accounts – providing they pay for the audit themselves. 

The paper is trying to verify both the emailer’s identity and the contract position on audits. 

Selling agent Harcourts has received several tenders for the management rights, principal Kelvin Collins says. 

Collins also says any sale is conditional on the villa owners’ agreement.