My first property purchase in Australia was an apartment in Sydney’s Breakfast Point in 2008. After it doubled in value within five years, I knew then that I wanted to invest more time, effort and money into property investing, as there was no way I could save that kind of money in five years in a 9 to 5 job.
Fast forward to today, I now have a sizable property portfolio across Queensland and New South Wales comprising houses, apartments and dual occupancy assets. I have turned a hobby, love and passion for property into a business with EKR Property, assisting first-time and seasoned investors Australia wide in sourcing, negotiating and securing investment properties.
During the last 15 years of building my property portfolio in Australia, I have come across plenty of hurdles. Here I outline the top three challenges I faced and how I overcame them to assist property investors facing similar obstacles along their journey.
Finding the time
When I started investing in property, I quickly realised that I had to treat it like running a business with a long term strategy. It is a process that takes time, research, and understanding of the pros, cons, risks and associated costs of buying, managing and selling property.
Holding a full-time job while learning the real estate business meant I had to invest time around my work schedule, which in the end meant less time for other essential things in my life.
I wanted to adopt the do-it-yourself approach, but I knew that even though this would save me money in the interim, it would prove more costly long term. Time is money! Plus, minimising risk was critical for me, so I never hesitated to seek out professional advice when I needed it.
I soon built a network of reliable professionals to save me time and assist me in making informed and safer decisions. I sought out mortgage brokers, buyers agents, property advisors and property managers with hands-on personal experience and qualifications to help me achieve better results quicker.
Despite the growth of my Sydney apartment over a short period, I was unaware of what lazy equity was and how I could have leveraged this sooner. I needed to learn more about the true power of capital growth and the potential of using this equity to invest in more property to build wealth. My biggest hurdle at that point was my lack of knowledge about the property market, but more importantly, how the lazy equity I was sitting on could be working for me. Property investing is a game of finance, with a few properties thrown in!
So the next step was getting educated, and it was the best investment I made. I was guided by the principle that formal education will make me a living while self-education will make me a fortune. I read plenty of property and investment books, took courses, joined mentoring groups, started working in the property industry and built up a network of like-minded people who motivated and encouraged me along the way.
I learned about good debt vs bad debt, the benefits of compound interest, and used ‘lazy’ equity, my spare funds and borrowing capacity to accumulate assets that appreciated over time. My goal was to pay down debt as quickly as possible to multiply the effect of reducing debt and equity gains to create wealth faster.
You don’t have to be an expert to succeed, but get educated to a point where you can be comfortable making informed decisions based on facts and data presented to you.
Working as a team
Finance is often one of the main reasons behind conflicts in a relationship. I learned that involving my partner in the property investment journey from the outset was crucial to my success.
Even though I was the driving force behind property investing, if I didn’t get my partner’s emotional, physical and financial buy-in, it made the process very difficult, especially when making decisions.
You must both want to be a part of the process, be comfortable discussing your finances and goals and agree on building the investment portfolio together to create wealth. Plus, executing things becomes more manageable, as two heads are better than one, especially two incomes when investing. This way, you both own the decision-making process, share the workload, own the losses and celebrate the wins together.
When I advise couples, I involve both parties in the initial meetings to ensure you are both committed to the process to reach the desired outcome. I facilitate the discussion, all aspects of the property investment process, from your risk profile to your end goal.
If you are a first-time investor encountering similar challenges, you are not alone. As mentioned above, I was in your shoes many years ago and had to start somewhere, so I sought help from professionals to save time, get educated and get support where needed.
As a qualified property investment advisor, my goal is to minimise your risk and ensure you remain financially secure during the process and journey of creating long-term wealth through property investment.
I can also introduce you to an A grade team of professionals, such as accountants, financial advisors, mortgage brokers, solicitors and property managers, to help you make informed and confident investment decisions.