Cafe owners angered by ever increasing outgoing bills
MAROOCHYDORE'S Ocean St area might be burgeoning but business is not getting any easier for at least one of the cafes that are breathing new life into the area.
The Greenout cafe and bar in Ryan Plaza is reeling under an increase in out goings being charged by its landlord.
Seng Lasi, who operates the cafe with his partner, Laura Ward, was unprepared for an increase of 16-20% in outgoings this year and is considering not paying the monthly bill
Mr Lasi said he had been asked to pay about $24,000 in outgoings this year, up on $21,000 last year.
The outgoings charges, which come on top of rent, cover a share of council rates, water and sewerage, electricity for common areas of the building, insurance, repairs and maintenance, landscaping and administration.
On top of this, Mr Lasi has also been billed about $900 to cover the cost of police employed for special duties in the area.
Mr Lasi said the increased charges exceeded CPI and were more than other businesses were being charged elsewhere.
"I've talked to a lot of people in Maroochydore and Mooloolaba and I'm paying way too much outgoings," he said. "Even on the Esplanade at Mooloolaba, no-one pays this much."
Mr Lasi said he had tried to negotiate with the letting agency and landlord about the charges without success.
In frustration, he withheld rent but was forced to pay when threatened with legal action.
The letting agency, Savills, has told Mr Lasi they had no control over many of the charges - rates, water and sewerage and electricity.
A breakdown of the outgoings shows that water and sewerage charges for the property have increased by 35.5%, bulk waste collection is up 19%, and electricity has risen by 28%.
Ross Webb, of the Reed Property Group, which owns Ryan Plaza, said Mr Lasi had signed a lease in which he agreed to pay outgoings.
Mr Webb said the company was only passing on increases and the expenses were audited to prove nothing untoward.