The Habits of Successful Property Investors

Over the 40 or so years I have been involved in real estate I have had the privilege of working with many successful property invelife directionsstors.

In that time I have seen some who I thought smarter than me fall by the wayside when their decisions proved to be wrong and I have carefully observed those who have maintained and grown their long term wealth.

In particular in the last 11 years, as I have been presenting at property seminars throughout Australia and South East Asia, I have had many lengthy discussions with successful property investors to look for points they had in common.

It has been very informative to discover they had very similar habits and attributes which contributed to their ongoing success.

If you want to become a successful property investor, I suggest you consider putting these ideas or concepts into action.

They have worked for others so they should work wonders for you.

1.Take full responsibility for your life

What happens to you is a result of your thoughts, your feelings and your actions.

So take responsibility for both the good and the bad things that happen to you.

I don’t believe in circumstances or luck.

People create their own circumstances or luck by putting themselves in the right frame of mind to accept success.

Successful people know they are the pilot of their own lives.

The less successful people feel they are just a passenger going along for a ride.

2. Become a pilot – not a passenger

By taking responsibility for both the good and bad things that happen in your life you will reduce the number of bad situations that occur and increase the number of good things that happen to you.

I find that under achievers love to taking responsibility for good results but always seem to blame others for their bad results.

Over achievers know that both the good and the bad occur and that there is no one else is to blame for either.

3. Become Decisive

Once you have made a decision stand by it.

We all make decisions in different ways.

Some of us just make decisions intuitively.

Others must think through all the ramifications before they make a decision.

Yet others of us make our decisions on gut feel –  we just know what feels right.

Whichever way you make a decision once it is made, stick to it and don’t question it, even if others around you do.

You will never only make good decisions.

That’s impossible.

Just accept your decision.

Follow through.

Then deal with any problems that arise immediately.

Don’t let problems sit around and fester, they never disappear.

So don’t beat yourself up over it, deal with it and move on.

4. Embrace change

It is often been said ‘the only constant thing in life is change.’

So look forward to change and see it as an opportunity and take advantage of these opportunities while others are frozen in the past.

Property markets change, interest rates change, supply and demand changes.

Market sentiment certainly changes.

The great thing is that whenever change occurs it opens up fantastic opportunities.

If you are committed to moving forward, you will have to move out of your comfort zone.

This is change and initially feels uncomfortable, but if things stay the same you will find you are really moving backwards.

5. Find opportunities where others see problems

Some people see the cup half full, while others see it as half empty. glass half full

When confronted with opportunities, the average person finds reasons why not to do something, yet successful people look for reasons why they should take action.

Find ways to make the situation work, rather than not work.

This is particularly true in property where you will find vendors with problem properties.

If you find a way to solve those problems you will be adding value and making money.

6. Successful property investors invest. They don’t speculate

Speculation is based on hope. Investment is based on fact.

Speculators look for the things like the next ‘hot spot’ or the next big thing, or the latest fad.

Then they hope things will work out.

Investors recognise that property investment can be boring.

They know its not very exciting just buying a good property and waiting for it to increase in value, but they don’t look for excitement in their investments.

They don’t want to speculate.

Investors ask questions like what has worked well over the last 20 to 30 years.

They don’t try to pick the next hot spot.

Instead they follow a strong longstanding trend.

While successful investors avoid risk by looking for predictable returns, speculators would say ‘Well this area hasn’t performed for a long time and it is about time for it to perform’ or ‘Now must be time for things to change.’

Many speculative investors live in the world of fantasy hoping luck will solve their problems.

Super successful investors know that no matter how much they wish for something to happen it is not luck that’s going to make it happen.

They look at the reality of every situation and realise that they make their own luck by working hard and focusing on facts.

7. Super successful investors build a competent team around themselves

They don’t expect to do everything themselves and they are not afraid to pay for good advice.

Team-at-workSuccessful investors surround themselves with people they trust who know more than they do.

I’ve often said ‘If you’re the smartest person in your team you are in trouble.’

So be honest with yourself about your abilities.

You can’t be good at everything but you have the potential to be great at one thing.

So choose your one or two things to focus on.

Then find others that are better than you at the things you aren’t good at and make them part of your team.

8. Successful property investors have learned to use debt wisely

They are not scared of taking on debt.

They have learnt how to use other people’s money to grow their own substantial property portfolio.

While most beginning investors use finance to buy properties, experienced property investors understand that once they have a property portfolio they will be able to borrow against it and use finance to fund their lifestyle.

9. Successful investors belong to a Mastermind Group

They have learned to hang out with ‘winners’ not ‘whingers.’

Find a group of like minded people and meet with them regularly to help you in your investment endeavours.

Learn what makes winners and copy their habits.

10. Successful investors act with integrity

If you commit to do something always make sure you do it.

Property investmentI have seen so many people in the investment business that are full of “wind.”

They tell you they will do something and create all these sort of excuses why it hasn’t happened.

Some of them are acting as honestly as they can.

Some of them never had any intention of keeping their commitments.

To stand out from the crowd you must do what you commit to do.

It will get you a great reputation in the real estate investing world.

11. Super successful investors think very differently to average investors

They have a different mindset and think of the big picture while underachievers tend to get lost in fine detail.

For example successful investors recognise that the value of their property, if well positioned, will double every 7-10 years.

Yet the average investor will worry about fluctuation in interest rates or land tax changes or other minor details.

They tend to get lost in the detail and often get paralysed while analysing the situation and they never take action.

Want more of this type of information?


Michael is a director of Metropole Property Strategists who create wealth for their clients through independent, unbiased property advice and advocacy. He's been voted Australia's leading property investment adviser and his opinions are regularly featured in the media. Visit

'The Habits of Successful Property Investors' have 4 comments

  1. August 21, 2015 @ 8:07 am Dorothy Trevan

    While some see the glass half full and others see it as half empty, what they are both missing is that the glass is refillable!


  2. March 25, 2016 @ 1:24 pm Rae

    Hi i have pre approval for building a 4×2 house in my back yard. Is this a good investment choice or could I make a better investment elsewhere? My plan is to rent the front 3×1 house out and live in the back 4×2.


    • March 25, 2016 @ 2:15 pm Michael Yardney

      Sorry – I can’t answer that – I don’t know the area, your budget, your aspirations, your alternatives. Too many unknowns


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