Saturday Summary – the most interesting property investment articles I’ve read this week (2014/03/15)

There are more property investment 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 interesting ones I’ve read during the week.

Enjoy your weekend…and please forward to your friends by clicking a social link buttons on the left.

Unlicensed agents fined for rent-to-buy scheme

There have been a few stories around about people using questionable  rent-to-buy schemes or fancy vendor financing techniques they learned at those get rich quick seminars.

Real Estate Business covered one of these:

Two unlicensed agents have been fined almost $30,000 by the Supreme Court after their rent-to-buy scheme was foiled by Consumer Protection.

The Western Australian scheme was conducted by Patricia and Bryan Susilo, who on 27 February 2014 admitted to their misleading and deceptive conduct.

Ms Susilo further admitted to operating as a real estate agent without a licence.

Between late 2010 and early 2013, Consumer Protection alleged that deceptive statements from the company were used to lure unwary investors.

Such statements included: “Own my home”, which gives the impression the prospective buyer in these schemes would get either sole or joint ownership of the homes after signing the contract, which was not the case; “No banks needed” and “Stuff the banks – move in today”, which Consumer Protection claimed suggests buyers could purchase the home without a bank loan, when the promoters had no reasonable grounds to make these statements; “We do not charge commission or fees”, which was misleading since the promoters derived revenue from the arrangement; and “We are part of a group of real estate investors”, which was false.

In addition, figures related to the weekly cost to prospective buyers did not accurately reflect the true total cost required to eventually own the property.

Commissioner for Consumer Protection Anne Driscoll said this case highlighted the dangers of people getting involved in these complex arrangements.

“It would appear from our investigations into these rent-to-buy property schemes that the prospective buyers are at great risk of losing their money and sellers are locked into a fixed sale price for the duration of the contract,” Ms Driscoll said.

“The schemes target people who are desperate and find it difficult to get finance to purchase a home, as well as vendors who are having difficulty selling their homes.

“Those who may be contemplating taking part in these schemes should think very carefully and get expert financial and legal advice before signing any contracts. They should treat any claims being made by promoters with scepticism and check to make sure information being provided by the promoter is accurate.”


Top Reno tips | 3 Big investing mistakes to avoid | Buying prior to Auction | John McGrath slams new legislation

Another great Real Estate Talk show  produced by Kevin Turner. If you don’t already subscribe to this excellent weekly Internet based radio show.

Details of this week’s show:
Paul Eslick and Geoff Doidge give us their all time top 10 road-tested tips to renovate for profit
Cate Bakos shares some of her tips when deciding to submit an offer prior to auction
John McGrath slams the proposed Queensland legislation that would prevent agents from putting price guides on properties going to auction

You should definitely subscribe to this weekly audio program. Click Here It’s free and you can listen on the go on your smartphone, iPad etc.


First Home Buyers Have become First time Investors  – Pete Wargent

Reports of first home buyers being pushed out of the market by ugly greedy investors is not necessarily correct according to regular Property Update expert Pete Wargent In one of his recent Blogs he explains many of those who would have bought a first home in the past are turning to property investment first and quotes a survey conducted by Digital Finance Analytics at to some of the reasons why this is the case:

-the tax-efficient nature of property as an investment is considered very attractive

-the average age of first-time investors is 31 years

-more% than 60% of those surveyed were looking at a long-term buy and hold

-91.5% of investors believe that prices will rise over the next 12 months (presumably explaining why they wanted to get a foothold on the market via an investment property).

I’ve always felt that the reporting with regards to “first homebuyers” is largely rubbish, since it tends to revise on massive sweeping generalisations.

The term itself covers a huge cross-section of the population, from 18-year-olds leaving home to those more than double the age.

And, as we are seeing in Sydney time and time again, more and more people are electing to rent where they live and buy investment units elsewhere.

Pete then concludes:

It’s a trend I expect to see continuing. First home buyers haven’t gone missing, they’ve just moved with the times.


Some Signs of a Dodgy Property Deal

An article in the latest edition of Australian Property Investor Magazine warns that Con Artists have a whole bag of tricks to sting unsuspecting property investors. Here are some things you should be on the lookout for…

  • Unsolicited invitations to events or information about an investment opportunity you didn’t ask for
  • Emotive language and claims that are too good to be true
  • Slick salespeople who are pushy or make you feel uncomfortable
  • One-stop shops where the salesperson, solicitor, financial adviser, valuer and broker are all under the one roof. Seek your own independent advice
  • Properties that are over and above the average price for comparable homes in the area. Be cautious of claims about expected rental return.
  • Investment ‘experts’ with a poor reputation. Often a simple Google search will reveal their unhappy customers.
  • Rent guarantees or other bonuses that only last a short time
  • Unexpected fees and charges or confusing conditions hidden in the small print


The 20 Biggest Regrets People Have When They Die

Dying is a pretty morbid thought, but unfortunately one of  my best friends through my childhood died last week – same age as me 61.

Pretty scary stuff and short sudden illness.  Lifehack provides this list of the 20 biggest regrets people have when they die:

  1. Caring too much about what other people think
  2.  Not accomplishing enough
  3.  Not telling someone how you truly felt
  4. Not standing up for yourself more
  5. Not following your passion in life
  6.  Arguing with your loved ones all the time
  7. Not growing the children to be who they wanted to be
  8. Not living more in the moment enough
  9. Working too much
  10. Traveling too little
  11. Listening to everyone else
  12. Not taking good care of yourself
  13. Not willing to take risks
  14. Having little time
  15. Worrying too much
  16. Not appreciating enough
  17. Spending little time with family
  18. Taking yourself too seriously
  19. Not doing enough for other people
  20. Feeling sad all the time


Blogs you may have missed this week:

If you didn’t have a chance to read my daily blog, here’s a list of the blogs you missed this week:

RBA Chart Pack shows property market in good shape- Pete Wargent

How long will this property cycle last?- Michael Matusik

Commercial Property Yields Firm As Activity Improves- Chris Lang

Are Asian buyers pushing up property prices? The RBA’s view – Pete Wargent

[Video] The latest property news with Kevin Turner | 13th March




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

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