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Tips for first-time property investors


Australia is one of the world’s most expensive property markets. If one has been saving for a while and believes that they’re ready for property investment, it’s worth reviewing some key points to make an informed decision.

One has to remember that property prices can fluctuate dramatically. Without warning, while property values may rise, they may also fall, causing an investor to break even or lose money depending on how long they hold on to the property.

If one wants to invest in the Australian property market at any age, consider some key points.

Setting a budget within means.

Depending on the size of the deposit, one could be looking at a loan term of 25 or 30 years. And, because this may be one of the most significant debts people can ever incur, it’s critical to prioritize any other financial goals they may have before diving in and considering a property investment. If one already owns a home, they may be able to use the equity in it to secure additional financing from a lender. Here’s a rundown of some of the potential upfront and ongoing costs.

Upfront costs
  • Unless the loan is paid in full, one will need to make a deposit (usually between 10% and 20% of the purchase price)
  • Government fees (stamp duty, mortgage registration, and transfer fees)
  • Costs of legal counsel and conveyancing (which will vary depending on the solicitor or conveyancer)
  • Prices for building, pest, and strata inspections.

Ongoing Costs

  • Repayments and interest charges on loans
  • Strata charges (for communal properties)
  • Council fees
  • Water prices
  • Assurance (for the building, contents, and as a landlord)
  • Repair and maintenance expenses
  • Fees for property management
  • If one does not have tenants for an extended period, they will incur vacancy costs.
  • Other prices include land tax.

Having a check on the credit report

If one has a credit card, mobile phone plan, or utility account, a credit reporting agency most likely has a file with their name on it. Credit providers provide information about a person to credit reporting agencies, which they use to determine whether or not to lend to them.

With that in mind, before one begins inspecting properties, it is essential to check the credit history, as an inadequate credit report may affect one’s ability to obtain loan approval.

Researching where to buy and what to buy

What one decides here will impact how much money one can make in the short and long term.

Things to look into while conducting the research include:

  • What are properties selling for in the suburbs one is interested in?
  • Whether these suburbs have the potential for price growth
  • If there are any proposed improvements in the area, this may have an impact on prices.
  • If one needs to renovate, and if they have the extra funds, what are the average rental returns and vacancy rates in these areas?
  • If there are nearby amenities such as schools, shops, and public transportation.

Complying with the law While property

managers can assist in various ways, as a landlord, one must be aware of their legal obligations. Landlords have several responsibilities before, during, and after a tenancy ends. These can vary depending on the state where the investment property is located in Australia.

These are some quick checks one must follow before moving forward and investing in a property.

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