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Episode 334 | Bernard Salt: The BIG Shift In Australian Property!

If you listen to just one episode, please make it this one!

Folks, today we are chatting with one of our very own virtual mentors (of all time!)… BERNARD SALT!!

Yep. You’ve probably heard us talking about Bernard on the podcast before – indeed, he has formed a lot of our own views about where the demand for property is heading.

In a nutshell: if there is one person on earth who deeply understands the intricacies of Australians and what drives people 1) to this country, and 2) to make specific property and lifestyle decisions, it is this man!

(And if you know these insights… you’ll begin to see where the property price increases are likely to occur, right?!!)

It obviously goes without saying that over the decades we’ve absolutely read and reread (and dog-eared the pages) of Bernard’s highly-regarded book (just one of many) called “The Big Shift”.

Yep. Big Guest.

Bernard Salt is widely regarded as one of Australia’s leading social commentators by business, the media and the broader community. He draws on a range of data sets to interpret social change now into the future. He argues that social and cultural change are powerful forces that are reshaping the way we live, the way we work and even how we form relationships. He was awarded the Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in the 2017 Australia Day Honours and was a partner of KPMG until his retirement in June 2017, and still acts as a special advisor to the firm. Between 2011 and 2019 he was an adjunct professor at Curtin University Business School.

Now Bernard is the Managing Director of The Demographics Group, and he writes weekly columns for The Australian that deal with social, generational and demographic matters.

Essentially… Bernard is the Go-To Guru on how statistics tell human stories and what the data suggests about key future trends!

Tune in now – ripper episode, folks! 🤸‍♂️

 

 

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Here’s What We Cover…

 

 

 

Episode 333 | Are We Property Spruikers?

Right. Let’s have the uncomfortable conversation – is The Property Couch just a platform for another couple of Spruikers to push property on you!?!

Look, we get it… this is a fair question to ask. One we recently received recently from a listener! And, who knows, maybe it might even be something weighing on the back of your mind as well.

So… Are we Property Spruikers?

Listen now, and you’ll hear our answer… we’ll leave it in your court to decide what you believe to be true.

Just a heads up – this is a Q&A episode, folks! So, while we definitely strip down to the bare bones on whether or not we are Spruikers, we’ve also got a couple of other themes in store for you…

 

 

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The questions we answer…

Question about “Are WE Property Spruikers?” from Daniel/RIPPAA

Massive fan of your show, which leads me to my questions regarding in particular Episode 325 – How to buy on a hot property market.

Listening to your show for quite a while, I’ve found that you guys always seem to advocate for property being an effective means of investing. However, sure you’ve got to be in a point in time where that is not the case. Investing in shares & stocks, generally speaking was probably not the best idea, what about property? You guys have done episodes on warning against spruikers and so I’ve been having concerns about, “What about The Property Couch then – does it fall under that category?”

However, until you guys did this recent episode 325, which to be honest was very refreshing to hear that acknowledgement of you guys just really giving that message of warning of cautioning I should say against buying at this point in time which I really appreciate,

that message of you guys caring about the community really came through. So my question is when do you guys see, at least a minimum point in time, until which the market is gonna change and sort of calm down a bit?

 

Question about Land Tax from Bruce Adkins

Hi Bryce and Ben. My question is about land tax. After starting out with a passive ‘buy any hold’ strategy, and then moving on to some renovations. I have finally landed on a strategy 3 or 4 years ago of buying splitter blocks, knocking down the existing house, subdividing into 2 or 3 lots, and then building new homes on each lot. When I can afford to, I keep the new houses and rent them out I do. Occasionally I need to sell one or more of the houses to assist with cashflow, or to help fund the next project. All my properties are in Brisbane and surrounding areas as I feel the need to touch and feel the sites and keep an eye on construction, etc. Early in my property investing journey I did invest in a location distant from my home. After a little bit of research and a quick flight to inspect, I purchased the property and the whole experience was a disaster, made worse by not being around when things went wrong. This experience convinced me that I need to invest in my own backyard, and my current, more active investment strategy reinforces the need to invest locally.

My current portfolio is now more than a dozen properties with an unimproved land value of around $8 million, and the annual land tax bill is really starting to hurt.

Apart from investing in different States (which I will find hard to get my head around), Do you have any other strategies for minimising the land tax impact of a large and growing portfolio?

I love your podcasts and would love any ideas you have for easing the sting of land tax.

 

 

Question on Lenders Mortgage Insurance (LMI) from  Francis Rivero

Not really a question but I would like to hear your thoughts on the following:

My wife and I bought a PPR in November 2018.

  • Purchase price – $345,000
  • LVR – 90%
  • LMI – $9700

Through making extra repayments and recovering a strong valuation result yesterday ($420,000) we are now sitting at 72% LVR just 2 years later. I realise this is just the way it is but I can’t help feeling like $9700 is a huge amount of money to pay in order to protect the bank for such a short time. Fair enough if we are still 5 years off getting down below 80% but I’m sure this happens to lots of people who buy well and are diligent with their money. Like I said, no specific question but would love to get your take on this.

 

Question on Being Gazumped from Matt Rose

Hi Ben, Bryce and the great Stig. I’m looking for some advice as my wife and I have been left disillusioned by the property system while trying to buy our 2nd investment property, this time in Melbourne.

The sequence of events went like this – we put in an offer on contract and put down 5% deposit, the agent phoned to say the owner has accepted, the agent then proceeded to shop our offer around telling everyone our exact price, the agent then entered into some sort of silent blind auction and sold it to someone else last night without coming back to us on the new price even though they told everyone else our price. Is this illegal or unethical and if not, how do we as a community vote to put better rules in place to protect the consumer?

 

 

 

 

Episode 312 | Don’t Push Your X-ing Luck: Investing In Properties Close To Train Lines & Tips For Divorcees

Investing close to train lines. Buying Grandma’s house. ‘Til divorce do us part.

And then this… Should You Buy “The Worst House In The Worst Street”… IF It’s In The BEST Suburb?!

In this Q&A episode we’re giving you the answers to the property investment questions that keep you up at night. (Quite literally. One listener was pondering LMI at 3am!)

We’ve got everything from how to invest in property as a divorcee, using loan redraws, whether or not you should purchase your grandparents’ property for investment purposes, ways to release equity, tips if you’ve only got fifteen years of working life left, what impact train lines have on the value of property… the works!

Suss out the exact questions we answer below.

Otherwise hit play and learn how NOT to push your “CROSS”-ing luck! 😉

 

 

Question About Buying Grandparents House From Lucy

Hi Bryce and Ben, Long time listener of the show. Wanted to reach out to get your opinion and views on a couple of things related to investing in my grandparents’ home in Brisbane and whether or not it is a good idea to:

  1. a) buy your grandparents house as an investment property and
  2. b) investing in Brisbane (suburb, Stafford).

My grandfather built the house 60 years ago. He recently passed and my grandmother is moving to a retirement home. I have an opportunity to buy this property and have always wanted to. I know you shouldn’t invest for emotional purposes, but it’s not just that. This property is right by the brook, at the end of a cul-de-sac and is inner city Brisbane (less than 10km from the city). I’m from New Zealand and have seen the suburb and city change so much over my 30 years of visiting them there. The house is on a large piece of land. I think over the next few years the prices are only going to continue to rise and desirability in that area is only growing so I see great capital growth potential. The house is an odd configuration and built in the 60s. It really needs to go at some point sadly, and if sold, I know a developer will bulldoze and rebuilt 3 townhouses on there as they are doing in the surrounding area. My current plan would be to rent it out as is for a few years, and eventually replace it with a nice family home to have as a rental to a family. The house is estimated to be around $660k from research and houses on that street are getting up to $1m in some cases. I have one investment property in New Zealand that has been a great asset to build equity in. I see my grandparents’ house as a low yield, high capital gains opportunity to buy, hold, renovate. Would love to hear your thoughts Thanks, Lucy.

 

Question About Tips For Divorcees From Cathie

I have recently separated from a 25y marriage and about to begin the property settlement process. I’m hoping to keep the family home and then begin my property portfolio. Where should my first stop be to make sure I set my finance and PPOR correctly? What tips or suggestions would you have for someone who may have 15 years of working life until retirement? I have just started your Money S. M. A. R. T.S and Start and Build program and am working my way through your podcasts(loving then ALL!) I would like to have my PPOR paid off and generate enough passive income of about $1000/W. I want to get this right from the beginning. This is a new stage in my life and I want to be able to feel comfortable in my financial choices and also be able to provide and be a role model to my children. Thanks Guys!

 

Question About Investing In Properties Close to Train Lines from Yannick

Hey guys, 2 questions:

  1. Just wondering, how does a train line across the road or backing onto the backyard affect the property value?
  2. Also we’ve all heard the saying, worst house in the best street, does this hold true for the worst house in the worst street of the best suburb?

I’m looking in Ballarat so being a regional area I’m not sure if all these factors are the same as in Melbourne. Thanks very much in advance!

 

Question about Using Funds in Redraw from Andrew

Hello, My wife and I have owed our first home for 2 yrs. Currently we have a redraw on our mortgage and have paid off an extra $100,000 (available for redraw) after a bit of research and listing to your tips, I am in the process of organising an offset account instead. Now, how can I use the current available funds in our redraw? We want to buy our second home in the next 6 months. This 2nd home will become our primary residence and we will start to rent out the first house. Can I simply move the available cash over to the offset once set up and then use it later on to purchase the second house?

 

Question about  Why Does LMI Even Exist from Mark

If LMI is an insurance that protects the bank in the event you can’t pay, why would the lender need to charge it if the buyer/investor can prove they have income protection and could always pay their mortgage? Just a thought I had at 3am this morning. Lol.

Also, can you use equity in your PPOR to purchase an investment without actually withdrawing it? A bit similar to a parent being a guarantor. Thanks guys keep up the good work.

 

Episode 306 | The Game of Loans: How To Find & Finance An Investment Property

How do property investors Find and Finance their investment properties?

Let’s face it: Asset Selection (aka finding the property) and Borrowing Power (aka financing the property) are two of our Four Pillars of Mastery for a reason… they’re crucial!

So with this in mind, how do property investors make sure they get these two things right?

Well, that’s where today’s episode comes in. We’re unpacking heaps of listener questions on these two topics so you get the insider’s guide into what to buy and how to set up your loan structure and strategy correctly!

We’ve dubbed it “The Game of Loans” and we think there’s quite a few takeaways in here, and even a few bits of gold we’ve never discussed before…

Listen now so you can learn how to find and finance your assets!

 

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The Questions

Question about “Investing in Victoria During COVID-19” from Trav:
Hi, gents, just a quick one. I haven’t yet mustered up the courage to do any investment in property. I’m looking to do my first one, hopefully within the next six months. And just want to get your views on the current environment here in Victoria. And if you think it’s a good time to invest in Victoria, the area that I’m looking at is Chelsea, down by the beach there, close to train line three bedroom, townhouse, one bathroom, own title, nobody corporate in a secure, parking area. I tick all those boxes that you guys talk about. I have low debt, zero debt effectively. I own my own property. I’m in a secure government style job around the 120K Mark and regular high-rises, and I’m quite a good money manager, yet to do the last little part of my structure. And that is obviously getting in touch with a good savvy mortgage broker rather who’s savvy around investments. So I just, your thoughts on that and let me know, keep up the good work and I hope to hear from you, sir. Bye.

 

Question about “Closer In And Smaller or Further Out And Bigger” from Violet:
Hi, Bryce and Ben we’ve been conditionally approved for our first home to the value of $750,000. We live in the North Eastern suburbs of Melbourne way. Wondering whether we should buy a two bedroom property with the potential to add an extra bedroom, which definitely needs a little bit of work, but we can get in for, you know, under $600,000 we believe, or if we should max out budget right up to the $750,000 and get a house that needs very little work and already has three bedrooms, which would be the best option here?

 

Question From Tom:
Hi Bryce and Ben, I’d just like to ask a question regarding timing on principal and interest payments on an investment property. We currently have four investment properties, which are all interest only payments. We still plan to purchase another one or two properties in the future. We’ve recently just refinanced our investment properties to take that to maximum borrowing. And we drew the equity to purchase our primary place of residence. That primary place of residence has an offset account. The old wages and our rental income goes into. I’d just like to know at what time do the investment properties turn from interest only to principal and interest repayments? Thank you.

 

Question From Shashank:
Hi Ben and Bryce, my name is Shashank Pande, and I’m based in Adelaide. I’ve been a regular listener of your podcast and would like to thank you for the amazing knowledge share and experience share that you do for the wider community. My question relates to auctions and my question is about the feasibility of an auction, from a seller’s perspective, in getting the best price for the seller, because it’s predicated on the reserve price for the seller, which is the lowest price that the seller would sell the property for and not on finding the highest bidder for the property. So I just wanted to get your views on whether an auction is the best for the seller to sell a house. Thanks, Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

Episode 305 | Chalk & Cheese: The Difference Between The Art & Science of Investing

We bang on about the “Art” and the “Science” of property investing a fair bit. But have you ever stopped to wonder what this actually means? Like, what’s the difference between “Art” and “Science” anyway? And how does this apply to picking an investment-grade asset?

Well, step right up folks, ‘cos we’re about to unpack all this in today’s episode!

‘Cos first things first… Art and Science are like “Chalk & Cheese”… completely different things!

So, when you’re looking at them through the lens of a property investor, you have to be mindful to the subtleties of each… and you need to know firsthand how they both complement each other and, most importantly, how they come together to ensure your overall success.

We can assure you… you can’t have one without the other. And just like Yin and Yang, there’s a balance you need to strike to get the art and science of asset selection right!

Tune in to today’s Q&A to get the difference between the art and science of investing… and the answers to a whole heap of listener questions about where and what to buy.

 

 

Question about How To Work Out If You Have A Good Asset Or Not from Alex Herbert

Hey guys, uh, just a quick, thank you for your podcast. I’ve only discovered it four months ago and you know, it’s been really good listening through everything and it’s, yeah, it’s definitely has a bit of a culture feel to it and I really enjoy it. So, thanks. Thanks for the effort you guys put into that. Um, quick background on me, I’m 31 years old. I have six properties. Uh, one is a PPR, which I live in and then there are others, our investments at this stage. Um, so basically my sort of worry, or the question I would like to know a bit more information on, is, um, I put all my eggs in one basket using a property advisor and walked through all the process and building this portfolio. Um, and all of the things you guys talk about, he’s implemented, uh, in my portfolio as well. So there’s, there’s a lot of things there that I have in place that you guys do say that’s, you know, the, the golden rules. Um, the biggest thing though, that does sort of get the, the alarm bells ringing a little bit, or makes me want to find out a bit more if I’ve made the right moves is I do have a few of them, which are new developments, new houses where had the land and are built on the land. Um, and I just want to know once you do have some assets in place, how do you know that they are the good assets to hold or whether you’re wasting opportunity by holding onto them? 

 

Question about Capital Growth Considerations from Kieran

Hi, Bryce. And Ben, you guys made a comment the other week in one of your podcasts that medium to high density apartment investors investor stock type assets that are likely to be most affected, by COVID over the next 12 to 24 months as investors get scared and that the mantra is up for those types of assets. My wife and I currently looking at a two bedroom for the units with a little courtyard and garage, but I guess we’re wondering whether the performance or the growth of those is less in the short term and is likely to be dampened perhaps somewhat of prices of apartments do drop or at least stunted in their growth. Is that likely to flow over into the next closest asset class being most of those two-bedroom units? Would we be better off potentially stretching a little bit further to get into at least a three-bedroom Villa unit, but perhaps a little bit more living space, a little bit more land and courtyard? Is that likely to be perhaps less impacted in its growth?

 

Question about Strategies For Buying from Soph

Hi, Bryce. Hi, Ben. Love the podcast. Thanks very much for your time. Um, I’m just wondering if you can give a bit of an overview of some of the strategies of buying when you sort of mentioned some of the strategies here and there, but I was wondering if there was a list or something that we can sort of, um, go through and look at those. Thanks very much.

 

Question about Tips To Go From One Investment To Two from Daksha

Hi, I’m Bryce and Ben. Looking for some property investment advice, I already have my primary principal home and also have one investment property. I don’t know where to go from here onwards. Um, I do have equity on my principal home and my investment property. Uh, I mortgage insurance, so it’s independent. Um, yep. Looking forward to, to getting some advice on how to go for the second investment or how can I do my financial planning so that I’m ready? Um, thank you.

 

Question about Buying As An Owner-Occupier from Frez

Hi Bryce and Ben. My name is Frez. I’m asking this question. I am from Melbourne and I’m hopefully a soon to be first home buyer. Um, my question to you guys was would I be crazy to purchase a home as an owner-occupier, so a home that I’m going to be living in when the address has left and to the right of me, I filled with two or three units. The address in front of me is a, you know, a compound with four townhouses. And it’s pretty much the same story up and down the street or up and down any street within that suburb. So the suburb I’m talking about is an area called Laverton in the Western suburbs of Melbourne, traditionally an industrial area, but I think recently with Williamstown landing popping up, Truganina popping up in tiny, further down the road was all these house and land packages.  It seems elaborate and has been all the more, uh, appealing, um, purely because it’s established homes, much bigger blocks, and they’ve actually got public transportation, which these other areas like two train stations, closer access to the freeway and an actual bus network, but driving through a few weeks ago prior to the restrictions I noticed everybody was tearing down these houses and the amount of construction for unit after unit townhouse after townhouse. Should I avoid buying in this area as an owner occupier? Um, yeah, I just wanted to know what your thoughts on it were. Thank you for the podcast. Thank you for the content. You guys have been an absolute godsend since I discovered you considering the stage I’m at right now. Thanks for everything.

 

 

 

 

 

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