Register by 1 August 2016 for free testing. 

As part of its Voluntary Purchase and Demolition Program, the NSW Government is currently offering free loose-fill asbestos testing to homeowners in 28 identified NSW local government areas (including Albury City Council and Greater Hume Shire Council). 

Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, a Canberra based company known as ‘Mr Fluffy’ installed loose-fill asbestos as ceiling insulation in around 1000 homes in the ACT and an unidentified number of homes in NSW. Due to the particularly harmful nature of loose-fill asbestos, the NSW Government has determined that demolition, comprehensive site remediation and disposal is essential to remove the health risk posed by affected properties. 

Homeowners have until 1 August 2016 to register for the free testing program.

If a home is identified as containing loose-fill asbestos, homeowners are eligible to participate in the NSW Government Voluntary Purchase and Demolition Program. Under the program, owners of affected properties will have two options:

1.    Land & premises buyback: The NSW Government will purchase the premises and the land at market value (valued as if the premises did not contain loose-fill asbestos). The NSW Government will demolish the premises, remediate the site and offer the remediated land back to the free-market. 
2.    Premises-only buyback: If a homeowner wishes to retain ownership of the land, the NSW Government will purchase the premises only at market value (valued as if the premises did not contain loose-fill asbestos) and the home owner will remain the owner of the land. The NSW Government will then demolish the premises, remediate the land and return the remediated land to the owner who will then be able to rebuild.

Different rules apply to the owners of multiple dwelling units, strata properties and rural homeowners. 

If you do not register for the free testing program by 1 August 2016 and your home does contain loose-fill asbestos, you may face potential legal action and you risk being unable to sell or rent your home in the future without costly demolition and remediation work.

For more details or to register online for a free test, go to NSW Fair Trading or contact Service NSW on 13 77 88.

For more information, please contact:

Allison Bruce
Principal
T: 02 6040 0701
E: abruce@harwoodandrews.com.au

Angus McDiarmid
Graduate Lawyer
T: 02 6040 0702
E: amcdiarmid@harwoodandrews.com.au