Owners lose fight over extra cash for Rowner homes

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PEOPLE who owned homes at the old Rowner estate have been dealt a final blow after trying to get more cash.

Residents and landlords who were forced to sell up under a compulsory purchase order had been battling to get a better deal for their homes.

Now a test case lost by two people means they will not be able to ask for any extra cash.

Julie May, 44, took her case to the Lands Chamber as she wanted £48,750 for her former Livingstone Court home.

Julie, of Pennington Way, Fareham, was offered £29,000 for the leasehold before it was increased to £34,000 in 2007.

She rejected the higher offer and has been fighting.

Julie, who paid £42,000 for the home, said: ‘I was hoping to at least break even. I came away from my valuation still owing £6,000 of my mortgage so I’m a bit disappointed.’

But she added: ‘I’m glad to have it all finished because it went on for a very long time.

‘It was pretty stressful and frustrating.’

As reported, Gosport Borough Council got a compulsory purchase order in 2010 to buy homes on the run-down Rowner estate to make way for the ongoing £145m renewal project.

There were around 22 people who disagreed with the valuations offered.

Surveyors acting for Julie and another owner, Quang Thinh Truong, argued for more, saying Taylor Wimpey, part of the Rowner Renewal partnership, had bought 27 homes in Rowner for around £50,000 each in 2008.

But the Lands Chamber determination said those homes do not ‘provide a reliable guide to the value of individual properties.’

A decision was made to award just over 10 per cent to the value of Mr Truong’s home and £34,000 to Julie’s home. It means the owners will have to settle up in line with this decision.

Paul Roper, 50, now of Bognor Regis, owned two homes in Lawrence Walk and one in Livingstone Court with two other people.

He said: ‘We’ve been waiting for the tribunal, and they’ve increased them by 13.3 per cent.

‘I still don’t understand why they paid [£50,000] for the [27] flats in 2008.

‘They were knocking the building down around us and we got so worn out with it all, most people just gave in.’

Clive Rutland, who represented Mr Truong, said: ‘We’ve got another eight or 10 outstanding that will be determined on the basis of what happened.’

Hazel Warwick, of First Wessex, which is part of the Rowner partnership, said: ‘We are now looking forward to completing this vital housing development in the Gosport area.’