Real estate agent allegedly misled on penthouse price

A REAL estate salesman who is alleged to have misled a client over the price of a luxury penthouse apartment was told he had to promote the building as being like no other in the area.

Juniper Property Holdings, which developed Oceans in Mooloolaba, is suing entrepreneur Carmelo Caltabiano for breaching a contract over the sale of a $16.85 million luxury apartment on the Gold Coast.

But Mr Caltabiano has claimed he was misled when buying the apartment in 2006.

When questioning a salesman why the apartment in the Soul building was worth nearly $17 million, Mr Caltabiano claims the man told him a nearby apartment in the Jade building had sold for $20 million.

READ MORE: Juniper locked in legal battle over luxury penthouse

But this apartment had not sold, it was only listed for this price, the court heard on Wednesday.

But at the Brisbane Supreme Court trial on Thursday, real estate salesman Justin Daniels said he was often told to compare the apartments in the Soul building to other buildings in Surfers Paradise.

Lawyer Peter Davis, representing Juniper, asked if Mr Daniels and other Juniper staff were discouraged from comparing Soul apartments to other units when selling them.

"No, we were often told to compare," Mr Daniels said. "And to promote the fact that it was across from the beach and that nothing could really compare to it on the Gold Coast.

"We were told to sell it on the comparison that nothing else along the beach could match it."

Mr Davis quizzed Mr Daniels if the sales policy for Juniper's staff was that Soul was a "standalone unique opportunity" because the apartments were the most expensive per square metre on the Gold Coast.

Mr Daniels agreed to this statement.

On Wednesday, Mr Caltabiano told the court he did not investigate Mr Daniels' claim about the purchase price because he trusted Juniper. He had previously bought property from them in Mooloolaba.

The trial is expected to continue on Friday.



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