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Bill Gertos could become a millionaire after he walked into the empty home


Bill Gertos claimed the Sydney home through squatters’ rights laws

A squatter who entered a large home when the occupier died is attempting to sell it for more than £1m.

It happened that Property developer Bill Gertos was visiting a client in a suburb of Sydney, Australia when he came across an empty house back in 1998. 

He asked around and found out that the property was not legally owned by anyone following the death of the elderly lady who lived there last.

According to Yahoo News, Mr Gertos went in through the back door and confirmed that indeed no one was in the rubbish-filled house.

Bill Gertos is selling the house for more than £1M

The following day he paid a builder to change the locks, embarking on a 20’year journey to claim the building through squatter’s rights laws and to then refurbish it.

The home is set in a leafy Sydney suburb

Mr Gertos has listed it for sale, after more than 20 years the Australian first walked into what he would go on to call his home.

“Set in a tree-lined whisper quiet Cul De Sac, this classic Federation façade, single level character home offers refurbished interiors, with further scope to extend,” a colourful description reads on property company Domain’s website.

“Enjoying a central and convenient location, it’s moments from Parks and sort after School district.

“A fusion of historical charm and contemporary sophistication, open plan living and dining area with indoor to outdoor flow.”

The property was recently valued at $1,700,000 AU (£0.91 million).

Mr Gertos said that he went to all due lengths to find out whether the property was occupied when he moved in.

“I was satisfied in my own mind that the property was not occupied and it was uninhabitable,” an affidavit made to the Supreme Court of New South Wales read.

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Mr Gertos claim to the property was temporarily blocked when the family of a man who bought it back in 1927 filed an injunction against Mr Gertos.

They claimed his squatter’s rights were invalid as he had rented the home out rather than living in it himself.

However, their challenge was brushed overruled, thus Mr Gertos became the official owner in 2018.

The developer has said he spent $35,000 AU (£18,500) refurbishing the house, although he has been unable to produce any records to substantiate these claims.

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