Weekend Reads – Must see articles from the last week

There are more interesting articles, commentaries and analyst reports on the Web every week than anyone could read in a month.

Each Saturday morning I like to share some of the ones I’ve read during the week.

Monday will be here before you know it, so enjoy some weekend reading…and please forward to your friends by clicking the social link buttons.

Westpac lowers deposit hurdle for property investors

Purchasing your next investment property may be easier than ever thanks to a new lending policy from Westpac.

As published by The Sydney Morning Herald, the bank is increasing its maximum loan offer, in addition to the interest rate cut that was announced at the beginning of the month.

Westpac, the country’s biggest lender to landlords, is lowering the size of the deposits it will require from property investors, partially reversing last year’s crackdown. 31111827_l

After a sharp slowdown in lending to property investors, Westpac and St George, which it owns, this month told mortgage brokers the maximum loan-to-valuation ratio (LVR) for new mortgages for property investors would rise to 90 per cent, up from 80 per cent.

The change means property investors need a deposit of 10 per cent of a property’s value, compared with 20 per cent previously.

It comes as banks are offering more competitive interest rates to property investors in an attempt to boost growth now that this segment of the market is growing well below the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority’s 10 per cent a year speed limit.

Westpac’s lending to investors grew 7.2 per cent in the year to March, down from growth of more than 11 per cent in the first half of 2015.

Find the full article here

Finding real estate GOLD + NT real estate takes a nose dive

Another great Real Estate Talk show produced by Kevin Turner.

Michael Yardney explains what he means when he says to look at properties with a twist. 

Nhan Nguyen from Advanced Property Strategies, runs through his checklist of items to ensure the project is viable.

Quentin Kilian  CEO of the Territory Real Estate Institute says it is the lowest quarterly levels on record and he explains why.

Andrew Mirams  from Intuitive Finance answers the often asked question – to lock in or not?

Bernard Salt  says what were considered luxuries for our parents in terms of housing was 3 bedrooms and an indoor toilet, as appose to todays’ 4 bedroom/2 bathroom home.

Bryce Holdaway tells us which properties banks will treat more favourably than others

If you don’t already subscribe to this excellent weekly Internet based radio show do so now by clicking here.

A recovery for Tassie?

Despite suffering many lows, it would seem that Tasmania is experiencing a little relief in its tourism results according to this blog from Pete Wargent.

Well, yeees, kind of.

It would be pleasant to see much a greater growth in full time jobs figures to confirm it, though.

Tasmania should enjoy a resurgence in tourism, particular with the Aussie dollar much lower than it has been.

However, some other industries have been hit hard since the financial crisis, and as a result the recovery has been a slow one.


Read the full article here

In This Month’s QS Corner: The ATO Targets Holiday Homes

Owning a holiday home comes with many luxuries; getting away anytime you like, no rental fees, having a home away from home etc.

Yet it would seem that the holiday may soon be over.

An article in Your Investment Property magazine has reported that the ATO is taking a firm stand again investors claiming too many deduction on their holiday home.

The ATO has recently announced a crackdown on property investors over-claiming deductions on holiday homes, this includes depreciation. 36195362_l

If you’ve been on holidays, it’s very easy to get caught up in the romance of owning your own holiday home.

Purchase price, stamp duty and mortgages offset by the rental income can make it look good in the halo of optimism that comes with the first flush of real estate lust.

The “we have got to have it and we will make it work” compulsion is common when purchasing lifestyle properties.

Holiday houses can be depreciated if they are rented out to a third party but that doesn’t mean you can’t stay there when you want to.

As long as it’s available for rent most of the year you can block out a two-week period over Christmas and claim the depreciation pro rata.

Click here for the full article

Has the rise of Instagram killed originality and the interior designer?

Becoming an interior designer has always been known to take a lot of work; studying, folios, years of building a reputation and client base.

These days, however, it would seem that all it take is a good quality phone, a creative eye and an Instagram account.

Domain.com.au has released an articled questioning the overwhelming number of ‘social media made designers’.

In the world of interiors we know all too well that style and trends are ephemeral.

What is a hot ticket item today becomes yesterday’s pineapple, chevron or gold gilded skull ornament.Insta3

This is just the way it goes.

But, are we bearing witness to this style-to-dead-file cycle moving faster than ever?

Social media and smart devices are having a growing effect on the way we live, the way we dress, the way we eat – and most certainly on the way we decorate our homes.

Once upon a time, interior design was the pastime of the wealthy and the elite – a service not available to the everyday punter.

But now, the masses can receive interior design know-how for free by signing up to Pinterest, following their favourite designers and stylists on Instagram or subscribing to one of the many blogs devoted to the subject.

We can now follow everyday nobodies as they renovate their homes and share the journey with their swelling legion of followers on the ‘gram, crowdsourcing community opinion on fixtures and fittings and basking in the unsolicited praise of their admirers.

Overnight, office-workers-by-day have become social-media-celebrities-by-night just by virtue of some craftily cropped iPhone snaps and some pretty decorating vignettes.

All said, is this hyper-rapid rapid digital ebb and flow of ideas and inspiration killing originality?

Click here for the full article

Weekend Video: How To Be Consistent: 5 Steps To Get Things Done, All The Time

Also published on Medium.

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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 Metropole.com.au

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