Recently I've had to really think about my future. Due to a change in my personal circumstances I had to sit down and review my life's road trip plan to retirement.
The road trip I had been on whilst full of many great things, also had some very bumpy bits and even a few dangerous conditions. Despite this, along the way I'd been able to build up a portfolio of five investment properties.
During this time, I've project managed over eighty property developments for our clients.
I watched a TV program tonight that was talking about the short fall in rental properties and it touched on the big 'negative gearing' angle that seems to be featuring a lot in the press lately. It struck me that it seems to be looked upon that only 'the rich' can own rental property. Of course, this is not the case.
I reckon it's hard workers and those who want to take a bit of a risk that get to own property. Nobody is going to drop an investment property into your lap. You need to go after it.
Many of Australia's property investors earn less than $80,000. My 29 year old step daughter owns three properties now and she's been earning less than $50,000 for some time. She bought her properties in the past five years and went after affordable, older style apartments where the rent almost covered the outgoings.
When you work so hard to buy property you don't want to let it go. My belief is that property is a long term investment due to the high entry costs such as stamp duty, loan set up and maintenance costs and legal fees.
Yet regrettably I had to sell one of my babies! No not one of my sons, but one of my properties. this decision did not come lightly but it made financial sense to do so. Luckily it had more than doubled in value over the past 10 years.
Then I read somewhere that only about 8% of Australians own one investment property. This story went on to say that less than 1% owned three or more investment properties. Whilst this helped me to feel a bit better about having to sell one of mine, I was astounded by these statistics.
Then I thought about what a client of mine had said to me when he was assessing a dual occupancy project..."you know Jo, when I look at the gross yield we can get from a Property Bloom duplex project and combine it with the depreciation benefits I'll get from building two, new properties, this type of development will help me move forward as it will be cash flow positive for me".
I think that's it in a nutshell. If you invest in property that is not going to drain your cash flow, you can keep buying. But you also need the mindset to do this multiple times. What may hold some investors back is buying a property that is too negatively geared. I'm all for letting the government help us pay off our properties, but you need to understand what you can and can't afford in terms of cash flow. Perhaps one or two negatively geared properties is ok depending on your income, but more than that, you'll need to look for better cash flow so you can keep buying. With negatively geared property, you rely on the capital growth in the future to pay yourself back.
When Property Bloom looks for development sites, we are focussed on finding those that will create a nice amount of equity in addition to producing a strong yield and depreciation benefits. Our clients end up with two properties putting them above the 8% of Aussies owning just one.
A typical Property Bloom dual occupancy project costs less than an older style two bedroom unit in Sydney yet will create equity and great cash flow, by the time construction is completed.
Of course a triplex development will put you into the 1% of Aussies owning 3 or more investments.