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 If your bathroom is old and outdated, it’s definitely time to consider an upgrade.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 pay your mortgage off sooner 

How to pay your mortgage off sooner 

Paying off a mortgage as quickly as possible reaps many benefits. By leveraging some simple savings strategies you can reduce the term of the loan and the interest you’ll pay. Reduce overspending We all do it. Unplanned purchases and impulse buying can seriously affect your financial health. Just by simply preparing a budget shows how much can be saved with a little planning. Pay lump sums off your mortgage Instead of pocketing your tax return or work bonus, consider putting it directly against your mortgage. Every dollar over the repayment amount bites into your principal, which reduces the interest payable. Don’t be complacent about direct debits and insurances Every year, do a health check of your insurances, including car, home and health, and promptly cancel subscriptions, like a long forgotten gym membership. Don’t forget to check your current loan/mortgage rate. Banks are very competitive these days. Sell it rather than dump it With online selling now the norm, there’s no excuse for throwing out an old couch or TV. Take some photos, put it up for sale on online garage sale sites like Gumtree or eBay, and make a little bit of extra cash to throw onto your loan. Stamp out your debt Debt kills your financial momentum. While you may be paying 5 per cent interest on your home loan, you could be forking out up to 20 per cent on your credit card or car loan. Forget extra repayments on your low-interest mortgage until you’ve stamped out your high-interest...
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...
What to plan to achieve your financial goals 

What to plan to achieve your financial goals 

One in four Australians have not made a financial plan and two in five have only made vague plans.  According to the Financial Planning Association of Australia survey, the top three dreams for Australians are to have full financial independence, have the lifestyle we dream about and pursue our own hobbies and interests.  Despite this, we also have financial regrets — namely that we have not saved (47 per cent) and invested (27 per cent) as much as we thought we should have. Interestingly, 63 per cent of us have not mapped out our financial future at all or have loose plans. A quarter of us never seek advice from others when making financial decisions.  So, what can you do to make sure you achieve your financial and lifestyle goals? Here are five tips to get you off to a good start:  Write down your list of achievements for the past 12 months.  Many people find goal setting daunting. I suggest you write down all of your achievements for the previous 12 months. For example, receiving a pay rise, laying down new carpet in the bedrooms, going on a long-awaited holiday, teaching your child to play tennis, spending more time with your spouse over coffee/tea with no TV and so on.  Write down every goal whether it be financial, lifestyle and relational because it puts into perspective that you have achieved more than you may initially recall. The positive mindset this creates can then help with setting new goals or tweaking old ones.  Set some financial goals and seek professional advice. Approximately 20 per cent of Australians seek financial...
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...