Neil and Rick Fischer of Grafton GJ Gardner Homes outside one of their display homes.
Neil and Rick Fischer of Grafton GJ Gardner Homes outside one of their display homes. JoJo Newby

GJ Gardner has no local problems

WITH GJ Gardner franchises in turmoil to the north and south of Grafton, a casual observer might wonder if the Clarence Valley office was under threat.

But GJ Gardner's state director Matthew Hope said the Grafton office, under managing director Rick Fischer, was thriving in the current environment.

He said the Coffs Harbour franchise, which closed in June, was in the hands of liquidators and the Grafton branch had stepped in to finish a number of partially completed homes after the collapse.

"This was done under the Home Owners' Warranty Scheme," he said.

The closure of the Ballina office this week, Mr Hope said, was a completely different situ- ation which came about from a decision by GJ Gardner's head office to terminate the contract.

He said the Ballina franchisee, C&E Structures Pty Ltd, had breached its contract with GJ Gardner by not paying its franchise fees.

Mr Hope said C&E Structures would continue with its existing contracts as it, and not GJ Gardner, was the licensed building company and the responsible entity.

"After Coffs Harbour closed we had a call from other franchisees for us to be much stricter on operators adhering to our regulations," Mr Hope said.

"So this (Ballina) is in response to that."

Grafton franchisee Rick Fischer said yesterday he had no contractual problems with GJ Gardner and business was tracking quite well.

He said his office, which had been trading in Grafton for eight years, five years under his ownership, had 15 homes under construction.



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