10 Property Investing Mistakes 

10 Property Investing Mistakes 

Whether you’re new to property investment, or you need a quick refresher course, here are some mistakes all property investors need to avoid for a successful investment career.   1. Falling in love with the property  You need to stop thinking like a home owner and start thinking like a business owner. You need to like the property. A question you should ask is could you live in it yourself? If you can, then it’s likely someone else can and so the property is probably rentable.  2. Not checking the facts  Due diligence is more than just an inspection of the property, it’s also a thorough investigation of your area’s rental market — vacancy rates, average rents, average age of the rental stock, zoning, government regulations.  3. The home improvement rule  It will always take three times the money and twice as long as you first estimate to get a property ready to rent. Allow for additional funds to pay the mortgage whilst the property is vacant, obtain a building inspection by a qualified building inspector.  4. Cash reserves  A lack of cash reserves puts unnecessary pressure on you to do substandard repairs, accept substandard tenants or make other poor decisions because of a fear of vacancy. When you have a sufficient cash reserve, you act rationally.  5. Doing it yourself  New investors often attempt to manage it themselves. That approach can end up costing more in the long run. Find an accountant you can talk to, a lender who will work with you and a reputable real estate agent to find a property in your price bracket. Find a...
Tips for starting your property portfolio 

Tips for starting your property portfolio 

Starting your own property portfolio may seem daunting, although with a few sage tips you can avoid unnecessary pitfalls and ensure success!  Be clear on your goals  Be clear on what you are trying to achieve from property investing. Be specific about the financial outcomes you looking to achieve from property investing, and in what time frame you want to achieve this in. Property is just a vehicle to get you to the financial position to give you the lifestyle you desire – ask yourself, “is it passive income, or a net equity position, or is it a combination, and when do you want to achieve this by?”  Be educated  We’re playing with large sums of money, and most often buying a property will be the biggest financial decision you will make in your lifetime. It still baffles me that some people spend more time researching a weekend getaway than they do buying a property. There are some great online platforms including Smart Property Investment, Australian-specific property investing books, podcasts, online forums, networking events, and free seminars.  It’s in the strategy  It’s important to understand what financial outcomes you are trying to achieve from investing in property because this will dictate the strategy you adopt, and how passive or active you need to be. It’s also important to assess your risk appetite dependent upon your situation. Some well-known strategies are buy and hold, renovation, flipping, development, and joint-venture to name a few. It might be a combination of these, however always be clear on what outcomes you are trying to achieve.  Build your team  Once you’ve created what you believe is...
Renovation projects that add instant value 

Renovation projects that add instant value 

Looking to add value to your investment before selling but not sure where to get the most bang for your buck? Before putting your property on the market or undertaking any renovation projects here are some suggestions that add instant value.   Paint  Never underestimate the difference a fresh coat of paint can make! This is one of the most cost-effective ways to not only add value to your property, but to make it look new and modern. Go for neutral, cool toned colours to make spaces appear larger. Choosing colours that are not likely to date quickly means you’ll get more life out of your investment.   Kitchen upgrade  The value a brand new kitchen will add to your property is incomparable. The kitchen is the make or break point for many potential buyers, so if you’re looking to sell for a high price point, ensure the kitchen is up to scratch. Don’t spend more than you have to on unnecessary features. You can’t go wrong with adding extra storage, quality finishes and appliances, as well as a fresh, modern style.   Bathroom upgrade  The other major make or break point for many buyers is the bathroom. If your bathroom is old and outdated, it’s definitely time to consider an upgrade. Again, go for clean, modern tiles that aren’t likely to date any time soon. If your space is small, larger tiles can help it look bigger and more expensive than it really is.   Front façade  The first thing potential buyers are going to see is the front of your property. Making a strong first impression is essential....
Who you need when investing

Who you need when investing

Purchasing a property can often be a daunting and painstaking experience, particularly if it’s someone’s first investment property. Here is a guide to five key personnel that experienced investors often work with.  Mortgage broker  Brokers liaise with both borrowers and lenders, researching products on the market and assisting clientele with the application and loan settlement process. As many banks tighten lending standards based on risk assessment, investors often work with brokers to secure property funding through alternative lenders.  Buyer’s agent  A buyer’s agent works on a client’s behalf to search, evaluate and negotiate the purchase of a property. Many interstate or time-poor investors employ an agent to do the groundwork in finding a property and often have access to resources otherwise unattainable for investors.  Accountant  An investment accountant maintains a client’s investments while providing financial advice and monitoring their finances. Many investors work with accountants to determine what they can afford to purchase and how quickly they can expand their portfolio.  Solicitor  A solicitor in this space is a representative of, or negotiator for, clients regarding contractual agreements and transactions. Investors often work with solicitors for property settlement, ensuring the accuracy of contracts as well as ensuring relevant documentation has been received.  Real estate agent  Real estate agents are instrumental to investors looking to rent out their properties and will advertise the property, schedule viewings, liaise with potential tenants and arrange paperwork in preparation for rental agreements within a short time...
How to buy property right 

How to buy property right 

Buying property has definitely got its upsides and its downsides. The skill lies in navigating these in your favour in order to make your property investing most profitable.  The most common words of wisdom heard from those that do well with their investments are; buy with your head, not your heart; and the profit is in the purchase.  This is where most investors and especially those new to property investing, go wrong. Most tend to treat buying an investment property just like buying their home, which translates to an emotional buy. This is where most go about it the wrong way too.  Commonly, we tend to look at agents’ windows, websites and the big property portals for suitable properties to find an investment. Yet, there are other ways to go about it if you want to buy with the added value of either having fast capital gain, scope for improvement, sub-division or even development potential.  Ultimately, when we want to buy any other product at the best price, we look at ways to buy from those that need to sell, how we can get it at a reduced price; buy it at wholesale or direct from the producer. Come to property, most investors look only at the retail end, which in most cases means that they are paying a premium price to begin with.  ‘The biggest profit is made at the point of purchase’, I have been told too many times from successful investors to ignore.  Just like a personal trainer at the gym, or a life coach for your career development, a property investment mentor are available to help you...
5 tips for investing 

5 tips for investing 

Many investors fail to get past their initial wish-list. Whether it be fear, timing, limited support or outright procrastination, lots of resolutions remain just that; a wish-list item which never eventuates. Here are some tips. Planning isn’t always easy, and it’s not all that simple either. Lots of thought needs to go into the why, the how and the when; and that’s before investors even get to the what.  A resolution needs to be clear, meaningful, results-driven and achievable if investors are  to have any chance at meeting their goals.  Here are some initial steps for those who are serious about property investing.   FINANCE Financial discipline is critical to the success of real estate investing. Get clarity on your borrowing power, ideal loan structuring and leveraged amount (i.e. the LVR – loan-to-value ratio). The funds you have on hand will help determine how much and when you can borrow. Without this critical step, there is little point planning anything else in the journey yet. Speak to a knowledgeable finance adviser with a proven track record for investment lending because loan setup is critical at the start.   MOTIVATION Ask yourself what your motivation to invest in property is based on. Quantify what it is you wish to achieve through property… is it a better financial future with less reliance on super/pension? Is it a specific passive income per annum? Could it be attaining your first home? Or is it about building wealth? Taking the focus off the number of properties or the value of your portfolio is imperative if an investor is serious about an outcome, not just a goal. The real question...