Ask Noel: super limits, capital gains and more

I have reached my $1.6 million limit for super pension phase. I am still working. Can I still contribute after-tax monies into my accumulation fund? What happens to my employer contributions if those employer contributions cannot go into the accumulation fund?
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You cannot contribute non-concessional contributions to superannuation if your balance has reached $1.6 million. You or your employer can continue to make concessional contributions irrespective of the balance in your superannuation fund up to a limit of $25,000 a year from all sources.

I am selling my father’s home. At settlement his total cash assets will be $919,000, of which $441,000 will be paid as a refundable accommodation deposit to the age care provider. The cash balance will be $478,000, from which he will have to pay a means-tested daily care fee of about $14,490 a year [maximum $64,000]. Can you tell me what his pension per fortnight will be?

Rachel Lane, from Aged Care Gurus, says: ‘‘Assuming the money in the bank is all of the assets, your dad’s age pension will be about $707 a fortnight and his means-tested care fee will be about $15,385 a year. It’s important to understand the direct link between the means test for your dad’s pension and his cost of care. A specialist financial planner could tweak the assets and increase your dad’s pension to $907 a fortnight, while reducing his means-tested care fee by about $2600 a year.

I’m 31 and expecting to make $250,000 from the sale of a property before the six-year CGT exemption runs out. Would I be better paying the money off my 3.88 per cent home loan or investing it in shares?

If you pay the money off your home loan it would be earning a net 3.88 per cent – over the long-term a good share portfolio should do better than that. But remember the name of the game is to maximise your tax-deductible debt and minimise your non-deductible debt so your best strategy may be to pay the $250,000 off your home loan and then borrow back against the home to invest in shares. This would give you the best of both worlds with the interest on the loan to buy shares being fully tax-deductible. It appears from your question that you are retaining a home as your residence and selling one that is covered by the six-year capital gains tax exemption. Make sure you liaise with your accountant, because once you nominate the home you are selling as your residence, there is potential for some CGT in the future on the one you are keeping.

I read your recent article wherein a couple could negate CGT by making a tax deductible super contribution. Can you reduce the tax payable on income from working and investments by doing the same?

Capital gains tax is calculated by adding the net gain to your taxable income in the year the transaction is made. A tax-deductible contribution may put you in a lower tax bracket, which means you would may pay less capital gains tax. In the same way a tax-deductible contribution to super will reduce your income from working and from investments.

Noel Whittaker is the author of Making Money Made Simple and numerous other books on personal finance. His advice is general in nature. Readers should seek their own professional advice before making decisions. Twitter:@noelwhittaker

Newcastle transport interchange builders in $2.5m bill dispute forced to count the cost of each bolt

DISPUTE: The $200 million Newcastle transport interchange at Wickham under construction in June 2017.THE builder of Newcastle’s $200 million transport interchangeand one of its subcontractors are embroiled in a fight over almost $2.5 million in disputed payments.
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Laing O’Rourke Construction took action in the Supreme Court last month against rail infrastructure subcontractor, Monford Group, attempting to have an adjudicator’s decision aboutpayment overturned.

The dispute relatesto a bill for $2.47 million Monford lodged with Laing O’Rourke in September last year for work the company claimed was done on the transport interchange at Wickham.

Newcastle transport interchange builders in dispute over $2.5m bill TweetFacebook The construction of Newcastle InterchangeIn October, Laing O’Rourke told the subcontractorit was not paying and Monford Groupmade an application under the Construction Industry Security of Payment Act to have an adjudicator rule on the dispute.

READ MORE:’This is going to change things’: inside theNewcastle Interchange

Monford claimedit was owed $2.72 million for workand variations to itsoriginal contract.

According to the adjudicator’s original decision, Monford provided details of thework carried out on the transport interchangeby identifyingthe number of bolts used oneach platform.

It also submitteddaily timesheets signed by Laing O’Rourke and a purchase order detailing costs incurred.

In November, the adjudicator ruled Monford was owed $1.17 million, including $590,288.97 for variations or additional work.

Unhappy with the decision, Laing O’Rourke took action in the Supreme Court disputing claims for variationsvalued at more than $2 million.

It claimed that some of the work carried out by Monford did not constitute a variationand so the money was not owed.

Justice James Stevenson found the adjudicator’s decision was made “without jurisdiction” and overturned the decision.

READ MORE:’Glorious day’: Newcastle Interchange at Wickham opens

He foundthe adjudicator ruled in favour of Monford based on rejecting LaingO’Rourke’s argumentsabout the variations, “without any consideration of whether Monford had carried out the work, or the value of the work carried out”.

He also found that in six of the claims the adjudicator did not consider whether the work was a variation to Monford’soriginal contract.

NOTE: An earlier version of this story said Laing O’Rourke was the builder of the light rail project. This was incorrect. It is the builder of the Wickham interchange for light and heavy rail services.

The Royal Wedding 2018: All you need to know … then some

The Royal Wedding: All you need to know … then some Prince Harry and Meghan Markle pose for one of two official engagement photos, at Frogmore House, in Windsor, England. Photo: Alexi Lubomirski via AP
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Britain’s Prince Harry and Meghan Markle after announcing their engagement. Photo: Eddie Mulholland/Pool via AP

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend a Service of Thanksgiving and Commemoration on ANZAC Day. Photo: Eddie Mulholland/Pool via AP

Prince Harry and his then fiancee Meghan Markle arrive to attend the traditional Christmas Day service. Photo: AP Photo/Alastair Grant

Meghan Markle attends a reception with Britain’s Prince Harry for the Commonwealth Youth Forum. Photo: Yui Mok/Pool via AP

Prince Harry and his fiance Meghan Markle in Birmingham on International Women’s Day. Photo: AP Photo/Matt Dunham

Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle at Kensington Palace. Photo: AP Photo/Matt Dunham

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle watch a performance by a Welsh choir Cardiff Castle in Cardiff, Wales. Photo: Ben Birchall/Pool Photo via AP

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle leave after attending a service commemorating Anzac Day at Westminster Abbey. Photo: AP Photo/Frank Augstein

Prince William, left, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend a Service of Thanksgiving and Commemoration on ANZAC Day at Westminster Abbey. Photo: Eddie Mulholland/Pool via AP

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle arrive to attend a Service of Thanksgiving and Commemoration on ANZAC Day at Westminster Abbey. Photo: AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth

Meghan Markle. Photo: AP Photo/Frank Augstein

Prince William, Prince Harry, right, and Meghan Markle arrive to attend services commemorating Anzac Day at Westminster Abbey. Photo: AP Photo/Frank Augstein

Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle, background attend an Anzac Day dawn service, at Hyde Park Corner in London. Photo: Tolga Akmen/Pool Photo via AP

Meghan Markle attends an Anzac Day dawn service with Britain’s Prince Harry, at Hyde Park Corner in Londo. Photo: Tolga Akmen/Pool Photo via AP

Prince Harry, right, and his fiancee Meghan Markle at the memorial service commemorating the 25th anniversary of the murder of black teenager Stephen Lawrence. Photo: AP Photo/Matt Dunham

Prince Harry, right, and his fiancee Meghan Markle at the memorial service commemorating the 25th anniversary of the murder of black teenager Stephen Lawrence. Photo: AP Photo/Matt Dunham

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are greeted by n Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, his wife Lucy and outgoing n High Commissioner Alexander Downer. Photo: AAP

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle attend a reception hosted by Malcolm Turnbull, Prime Minister of and his wife Lucy Turnbull at House in London. Photo: AP Photo/Alastair Grant

Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle attend the UK team trials for the Invictus Games Sydney 2018 at the University of Bath. Photo:AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth

Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle attend the UK team trials for the Invictus Games Sydney 2018 at the University of Bath. Photo:AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle take part in an event as part of International Women’s Day in Birmingham. Photo: Ian Vogler/Pool via AP

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle take part in an event as part of International Women’s Day in Birmingham. Photo: Hannah McKay/Pool via AP

Britain’s Prince Harry and his girlfriend Meghan Markle pose for photographs in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle watch a performance by a Welsh choir Cardiff Castle in Cardiff, Wales. Photo: Ben Birchall/Pool Photo via AP

Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle speak with teachers at the Nottingham Academy in Nottingham. Photo: Andy Stenning/Pool Photo via AP

Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle speak with teachers at the Nottingham Academy in Nottingham. Photo: AP Photo/Frank Augstein

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry at the Nottingham Contemporary to attend a Terrence Higgins Trust World AIDS Day charity fair, in Nottingham. Photo: Adrian Dennis/Pool Photo via AP

A view of the engagement ring. Photo: Adrian Dennis/Pool Photo via AP

TweetFacebookWill Meghan’s dress be daring or demure?A ball gown fit for a princess? Or a sleek, sexy Hollywood silhouette? Sleeves or off-the-shoulder?

In the countdown to May 19 when Meghan Markle weds Prince Harry at Windsor Castle, speculation continues to grow about the former actor’s wedding dress.Even n designers are having a guess at the dress which will shape global bridal fashions.

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n designers Sam Oglialoro and Megan Ziems show how they’d dress bride-to-be Meghan Markle.

From Hollywood to Royal FamilyShe’s gone from being an actress to joining the Royal family. That’s just life as it is for Meghan Markle.How much do you know about Prince Harry’s wife-to-be?

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Already known for supporting a variety of causes, Meghan Markle is used to championing charities.

Meghan moves from starlet to royal styleMini skirts, crop tops and fitted dresses have given way to tailored suits and elegant separates as Meghan Markle prepares to become a duchess.Since her engagement to Prince Harry in November, the American actresses’ wardrobe has undergone the royal treatment, with hemlines lengthened and conservative looks favoured.

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Meghan Markle’s style is moving from Hollywood to royalty as she embarks on her new career.

Meghan might wear Aussie design down aisleAs the world waits to see Meghan Markle’s wedding dress, an n design duo could be busy at work on the gown which will shape bridal trends for years to come.n-born, London-based designers Tamara Ralph and Michael Russo of Ralph & Russo are rumoured to be creating Meghan’s wedding dress for her May 19 nuptials to Prince Harry.

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n couturiers Tamara Ralph and Michael Russo may win royal wedding favour.

Harry likely to don uniform on wedding dayHe’s courted controversy with his outfits in the past but Prince Harry seems most likely to toe the family line and don a military uniform for his wedding to Meghan Markle.The 33-year-old playboy-turned-committed prince resigned from the British Army in 2015 but will likely follow in the sartorial footsteps of his brother, father and grandfather and sport regimentals for his May 19 nuptials.

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Prince Harry is likely to follow royal tradition and wear a military uniform for his wedding.

A guide to Meghan Markle’s familyMeghan Markle’s family have been under intense media scrutiny since she announced her engagement to Prince Harry in November 2017. Her relatives are in many ways unlikely in-laws for Britain’s royal family: Markle’s parents are divorced, her half-siblings opinionated, and her father once declared bankruptcy.

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Meghan Markle with her mother Doria Radlan at the Invictus Games in Toronto last year.

Peonies and white roses for royal weddingSt George’s Chapel will be decked out with white garden roses, peonies and foxgloves for the royal wedding.Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have chosen floral designer Philippa Craddock to create the in-season displays for their big day.

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St George’s Chapel will be filled with white garden roses and peonies for the royal wedding.

London baker gets started on royal cakePreparations appear to be underway on the buttercream covered organic lemon elderflower wedding cake being prepared by a east London baker for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. Pastry chef Claire Ptak posted the words “and so it begins” on her Instagram account on Tuesday alongside a photograph of six crates of lemons.

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Claire Ptak has begun preparing an organic lemon elderflower cake for the royal wedding.

Meghan expected to don Welsh gold ringWhile everyone expects Prince Harry to slip a Welsh gold wedding ring on the finger of Meghan Markle during their nuptials, he is unlikely to wear one himself. Royal wedding rings worn by brides are traditionally made from Welsh gold but very few men in the monarchy have chosen to don a wedding band.

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Prince Charles is one of the few royal men to wear a wedding band.

Tradition for royal wedding bouquetTradition dictates that a royal bride’s bouquet contains a sprig of myrtle. The custom dates back to Queen Victoria’s time when the monarch’s daughter, Princess Victoria, carried it among her bridal flowers in 1858.

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As in previous royal weddings, it is custom to have a sprig of myrtle in the bride’s bouquet.

Royal retreat of Windsor ready for weddingFew towns are as stereotypically English as Windsor, the bucolic riverside locale where Prince Harry and American actress Meghan Markle will get married on May 19. And few towns are as pleasing when a warm spring sun bakes off the morning mist. Even the plump white swans on the Thames seem relieved that the long, hard winter is over.

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Fevered preparations are underway at Windsor ahead of Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding on Saturday.

Charles and Di style wedding not for HarryA fairytale frock and a clutch of royals is probably all Prince Harry’s wedding will have in common with the monumental nuptials of his parents, Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer.The “wedding of the century” in 1981 drew a global TV audience of 750 million, with two million people turning out on the streets of London to cheer the future king and his young bride.

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Harry’s wedding will be less formal and lavish than Prince Charles and Diana’s ceremony.

Politics at heart of royal marriages pastPrince Harry may be marrying an American Hollywood princess but unlike his ancestors theirs is a love match rather than a political one. For centuries members of England’s royal family were strategically married off to European royals with the aim of cementing allegiances, mainly to help avoid war but also to reap economic benefits.

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Harry and Meghan are marrying for love, but in the past politics has been the defining factor.

Meghan’s first wedding a relaxed affairStaged on a Jamaican beach, with guests dancing the night away barefoot, Meghan Markle’s first wedding could not have been more different from her impending royal nuptials.After dating for more than five years, Ms Markle and American producer Trevor Engelson tied the knot in front of dozens of guests in 2011 at the tourist hotspot of Ocho Rios on the island’s north coast.The venue is a far cry from Windsor Castle’s medieval St George’s Chapel.

Read more►

The royal nuptials will be a complete contrast to Meghan Markle’s first wedding, held in Jamaica.

The modern royal family: how well do you know them?Are you a right Royal expert or a bit of a casual observer? Take the quiz here.

Chardon confessed to killing wife: Foster

Peter Foster says John Chardon made a jailhouse confession to shooting and killing his wife Novy because he didn’t want her getting half of his business.
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The convicted conman made the explosive claims on the opening day of the Gold Coast businessman’s committal hearing on Wednesday.

He also claimed police told him Chardon’s daughter was trying to hire a hitman to kill him.

Foster told the Brisbane Magistrates Court he was a police informant in the jail where the pair were incarcerated in 2015 when Chardon made the admission.

While referring to notes he made while they shared a cell, the notorious conman claimed the accused murderer also told him how he disposed of her body in 2013.

“By this stage he’s told me how he’s killed her, he’s told me how he shot her, told me about the gun and all that,” he said.

Foster said he asked Chardon why he did it.

“I think he says: ‘I’ve worked 25 years or more to build the business up, why am I going to give half to that whore?’,” he said.

The court also heard Foster was the one who contacted police about Chardon, who was in custody on other matters, after he saw a TV broadcast about a search for Novy’s body.

He claimed after telling Chardon about the segment, the accused killer said, ‘well they won’t find her there’, before he got his lunch and called his lawyer.

Foster agreed to become a police informant and moved into Chardon’s cell for six weeks.

The court heard as part of the conditions of the deal he asked investigators for a listening device because he didn’t think anyone would believe his account.

Foster claimed after living with Chardon for just a few days he was “1000 per cent convinced” he had killed his wife.

“I think he’s a very troubled man and I believe he murdered his second wife,” he said.

“I would wager that he killed his first wife but I have no evidence on that.”

Foster, who is on remand in a NSW jail, repeatedly denied there had been anything in it for him in exchange for his help.

He claimed instead he was trying to do the right thing for a change and that someone needed to speak up for Novy.

But he conceded he asked himself as recently as Wednesday morning if he was risking his life by giving evidence.

“The reason I say that … is the Queensland police came to me two years ago and said they had intel Mr Chardon’s daughter was trying to get a hit man to kill me and did I want witness protection?” he claimed.

Foster said whenever he had questioned his involvement in the case he thought about what his idol, rugby league coach Wayne Bennett, would do.

“Coach Bennett would say ‘you tell the truth and you do your civic duty’ and that’s why I’m here,” he said.

Novy, who was 34, was last seen at the pair’s northern Gold Coast home on February 6, 2013.

Her car was found at Nerang train station a few days later, but despite extensive searches and a $250,000 reward, her body has never been found.

The hearing is expected to continue on Thursday.

Morrison insists wage outlook conservative

Treasurer Scott Morrison believes his economic forecasts are conservative, including the expectation wages growth will be racing along at 3.5 per cent in four years time.
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Workers around the country will probably be thinking “if only”.

A decent wage rise has been the missing link in ‘s record run of employment growth and stands only just above a two-decade low of 2.1 per cent.

In his third budget handed down on Tuesday, which included an early return to a surplus and a seven-year plan to cut taxes, the treasurer stuck to a forecast that will see wages growth accelerate to 3.25 per cent in 2019/20 and 3.5 per cent the following financial year.

Such levels have not been seen for more than five years but Mr Morrison is adamant workers can expect stronger wage growth in coming years.

“We always seek to take a cautious approach and I think what you have seen – particularly over the last 12 months to 18 months – is a reflection of that,” he told the National Press Club during his traditional post-budget address held in Parliament House’s Great Hall.

“We have been cautious to stay, I think, on the right side of this line and the surprises that come are intended to be on the upside and not on the downside.”

The latest wage price index for the March quarter – the Reserve Bank and Treasury’s preferred measure of wage growth – is due next Wednesday.

Scott Morrison

JP Morgan economists warned in their post-budget analysis the forecast of a sharp rebound in wages in coming years is an assumption “which might present some downside risk to future revenue projections”.

Commonwealth Bank chief economist Michael Blythe agreed.

“We might argue that wages growth will not lift as quickly given the slow progress expected in winding down the unemployment rate,” he said in his analysis.

Treasury does not expect the jobless rate to reach five per cent until 2021/22, a level the Reserve Bank regards as full employment.

The unemployment rate was 5.5 per cent in March.

Treasury also predicted economic growth would accelerate over the next couple of years to three per cent, but that’s a prediction which is slightly less optimistic than the International Monetary Fund and even the conservative Reserve Bank.

The central bank is forecasting growth of 3.25 per cent in the next two financial years, while the IMF puts economic growth at three per cent for this calendar year and 3.1 per cent in 2019.

“‘s recovery is expected to accelerate, driven by infrastructure investment and private consumption,” the IMF said in its latest regional outlook for the Asia Pacific released on Wednesday.

More broadly, the Washington-based institution said the outlook for Asia and the Pacific remains strong and the “most dynamic of the global economy”.

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

The heights of tranquility in Croudace Road House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights
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RELAXING: The residence overlooks a swimming pool with a paved entertaining area.

BUSH BACKDROP: The home was built in 1940 and is set on a double block, 1878 square metres in size.

RETREAT-LIKE: There is no shortage of places to relax on this property, which backs onto Blackbutt Reserve.

NATURE: There are sprawling gardens and plenty of wildlife visitors to this private property in New Lambton Heights.

VERSATILE: There are multiple indoor and outdoor living spaces on offer and a layout that can be easily adapted.

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton Heights

TweetFacebook House of the Week: 185 & 187 Croudace Road, New Lambton HeightsIt was the first house they looked at in Newcastle and ended up being their enjoyed and much-loved home for the better part of the past two decades.

Brian and Diane were relocating to Newcastle from the Central West and looking for space and bush surrounds when they bought a home on a double block backing onto Blackbutt Reserve in New Lambton Heights.

They have now listed 185 & 187 Croudace Road for sale through Robinson Property’s Mike Flook.

“It’s on two blocks and the house is perched in the middle of the two blocks,” Mr Flook said.“It was built in the 1940s and has undergone two major renovations and extensions in its time.It is a beautiful home and it just has a lovely feel as you walk through it.”

It was that lovely feel that won over Brian and Diane 17 years ago.

“The house itself is a very tranquil sort of place,” Brian said.“It’s very comfortable andvery peaceful. It’s quiet and you’re surrounded by the sound of the birds –it’s just a nice spot to be.

“We always talk about what a liveable city Newcastle is and, as for New Lambton Heights, we think it’s probably one of the most liveable suburbs of Newcastle.

“It’s probably one of the very few leafy suburbs of Newcastle but it’s also got that great sense of community. We’ve got fantastic neighbours here and it’s a real family friendly area.”

Related content: International interest in Pokolbin estate

They have embraced the“leafiness” and “bushland feel”, creating many retreat-like spaces on the property.

“With the bush comes all of the benefits as well.It’s nice and cool in the summer, we get a lot of wildlife hereand it’s just a lovely spot to be,” Brian said.

The home has five bedrooms, three bathrooms, a contemporary kitchen and no shortage of indoor and outdoor entertaining spaces.

It has a swimming pool and sprawling gardens.

“Itwas one of the veryfirst houses that we looked at when we came over here and there was that old rule that you never buy the first house you look at,” Brian said.

“So then we spent a couple of weeks looking around and looked at many homes, not only in New Lambton Heights but in surrounding areas, out at the lake, in town and this one was always there in the back of our minds. We came back to it and fortunately it was still available.

“It is a home that lends itself to lots of different activities; it’s quite a flexible home. It’s got some great outdoor spaces and it’s very versatile inside.”

It has been a family home and an entertaining residence.

“We’ve had some wonderful parties here. We’ve had livebands out on the back deck and it’s something we’ve been able to share with other people as well,” Brian said.

Price guide is on request.

Read more:Panel-beating workshop turned ‘funky’ Islington home on the market

It was my first time on drugs, says Rainbow Serpent flasher

A drug-affected man who masturbated in front of women before spitting on the face of a woman police officer at Lexton’s electronic music festival Rainbow Serpent has escaped conviction.
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The 23-year-old Ivanhoe man, who The Courier has chosen not to name,appeared before the Ballarat Magistrates Court and pleaded guilty to a string of serious charges including directing sexual activity towards another person and assaulting an emergency worker following the four-day “bush doof” last January.

The court was told the man entered a tent with his pants pulled down to his ankles before he began to masturbate in front of a group of people, including three women.

Shocked witnesses called for help before security guards arrived on scene, but the man quickly became aggressive, verbally abusing the guards and yelling“I’ll knock your f*cking teeth out”.

A struggle broke out, with the man kicking a woman police officer twice before spitting on her left cheek.

He was eventually arrested and taken to Ballarat police station, where he stayed the night in a cell before being interviewed the next day, telling police he had been “bantering” with women at the festival and had taken hallucinogens and MDMA.

In court on Tuesday, the man’s defence lawyer said his client had not taken drugs before and did not intend on taking drugs until he was offered them at Rainbow Serpent.

MagistrateJohanna Metcalf slammed the man’s behaviour, saying“you’ve got to live with what you’ve done and the embarrassment of it”.

“Are you saying he’s never taken illegal drugs before and has had a reaction?” Ms Metcalf asked.

The man, who was supported by his girlfriend in court, was fined $3500 and escaped a criminal conviction.

Ballarat Courier

What’s Selling: Charlestown home with ‘park-like surrounds’ in Jordan Street sells for $1.125 million

SPACE: This home in Charlestown’s Jordan Street, was set on 1612 square metres of land and lasted just two weeks on the market before being sold.A residence with “park-like surrounds” that was the birthplace of Charlie’s Run For Kids charityin Charlestown has given Jordan Street its first million-dollar sale.
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Ray White’s Teresa Heighington sold No.3 for $1.125 million. The four-bedroom home was set on a1612 square metre block and had had the same owner for over 30 years.

Homes in the cul-de-sac are tightly held, with the last one being sold in 2012, according to n Property Monitors data.

Ms Heighington said the property that had development potential was being marketed with a guide of $1.1 million to $1.2 million and the sale exceeded expectations.

Read more: International interest for Pokolbin estate

The property lasted just two weeks on the market before being secured by a local buyer.

“A standard house on a standard block wouldn’t have achieved that,” Ms Heighington said. “It’s fantastic for the area.”

This home in Charlestown enjoyed ‘park-like surrounds’ and is the first million-dollar home for Jordan Street.

Also in Charlestown, a three-bedroom home on the Pacific Highway was bought for $525,000.

The median sale price for Charlestown rose from $542,500 in 2016 to $620,500 last year.

A home which had been in the same family for over 50 years and was set on over 700 square metres of land in Hillsborough’s Percy Street sold for $600,000.

Read more: Panel-beating workshop turned ‘funky’ home in Islington

In the tightly heldEast End, where there has been a string of properties hit the market this year, 1 Stevenson Place sold for $1.75 million.

It comes after No.6 in the street was sold for $1.8 million last month.

A three-bedroom townhouse with water views in Carrington’s Forbes Street wassold for $875,000.

A renovated three-bedroom home on 304 square metres in Maryville’s EstellStreet was bought for $800,000 and a three-bedroom home on 305 square metres in Lewis Street sold for $745,000 as the harbourside suburb continues to prove popular in the marketplace.

In Cardiff South’sMaud Street, a three-bedroom home on over 700 square metres was securedfor $550,000. In New Lambton, there was a $1.17 million sale for a home in Hooper Street within walking distance of Blackbutt’s Richley Reserve and a sale of $1.07 million in Portland Place.

Read more: The Heights of tranquility in Croudace Road

Minister doubts doctor exodus claim in Qld

The n Medical Association claims bullying is forcing too many doctors out of Queensland’s public hospitals, but the health minister says he’s seen no evidence of that.
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Michael Gannon says doctors are being muzzled on important issues, including bed and staffing shortages and the early discharge of patients.

“The bullying and negative culture in public hospitals has doctors leaving in droves to work in the private sector,” Dr Gannon told The Courier-Mail on Wednesday.

“Bed shortages have become a joke. There are staff shortages and doctors are being forced to sign off less-than-perfect care.”

But Health Minister Steven Miles cast doubt on the exodus claims, saying an extra 1604 doctors came to work for Queensland Health in the three years to March this year.

He said turnover of medical staff was less than half of what was seen elsewhere.

“Given public hospital activity is increasing at a greater rate than private hospital activity, it seems highly unlikely that there is an exodus of public hospital doctors to the private sector,” he said in a statement.

Mr Miles did not directly address Dr Gannon’s claims about a “shameful” culture of bullying in hospitals, but noted the government paid the Queensland arm of the AMA to train medical interns in resilience.

Opposition Leader Deb Frecklington said the public health system was clearly in crisis.

She said there was more federal money on the table to alleviate the pressures doctors were under, but Queensland has refused to sign up.

“There is record funding coming from Canberra that (Premier) Annastacia Palaszczuk continues to ignore,” she said.

“It will mean more than $29 billion for Queensland in the five years to 2024-25.”