Saturday Summary – property investment articles 27th October 2012

Each Saturday morning I like to share some of the interesting property investment and economic articles I’ve read during the week.

I’ve put them here all in the one place for your easy reading.

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

What John McGrath thinks is happening to the Sydney property market.

Last week I mentioned John McGrath’s Sydney Property Report. This week I’d like to highlight other parts of it..

McGrath says are the major trends he’s seeing in the Sydney market today are:

  1. The rise in apartment living, with city planners increasingly favouring medium to high density development to cater for ongoing population growth. In the past 12 months, 15,411 new apartments were approved and no doubt first home buyers will be going after those under $650,000 to take advantage of the new $15,000 grant.
  2. Speaking of first home buyer activity, we’re seeing more young people in the market due to falling interest rates. Latest figures show first timers are most active in the west and south-west of Sydney with Westmead, Liverpool and Blacktown the top three suburbs.
  3. Home owners are increasingly favouring green living, with half a million Australian households using solar power and a million using solar hot water.
  4. Developers are acknowledging the national trend for smaller households. Innovative new products include one bedroom ‘pocket penthouses’ instead of grand top floor residences.
  5. Sydneysiders’ obsession with renovating continues, with Victorian terraces, Californian Bungalows and workers’ cottages the most common reno projects across the city.

Read the full Sydney McGrath Report


When is the best time to buy my next property?

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

This week he has a heap of great guests:

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.


How big is the Australian property market

Economist Leith van Onselen uses RPData’s report to explain that the residential housing market is Australia’s single largest asset class with a total estimated value of $4.82 trillion as at July 2012.

In comparison, the total value of listed domestic equities is three times smaller at $1.23 trillion.

In order to put the sheer size of Australia’s housing market into perspective, the below table compares RP Data’s estimate against other Anglo nations, namely; New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Canada and the United States:

The above data is consistent with estimates from the International Monetary Fund, which showed that Australians and New Zealanders have a higher proportion of their wealth tied-up in housing (and lower proportion of wealth stored in financial assets) than is the case in other Anglo nations.

Van Olsen concludes that with so much of the economy tied-up in housing, let’s hope that the old adage: “you can’t go wrong with bricks and mortar” holds true.

Read his blog here…


NSW needs 140,000 new homes in four years: minister

The housing shortfall in NSW has gone beyond a crisis with 140,000 additional homes needed by 2016, according to the Fair Trading Minister, Anthony Roberts.

Launching the fourth edition of the Tenants’ Rights Handbook today Mr Roberts said the extent of the housing shortage was brought home to him at the weekend when he passed a line of prospective tenants queued around the block to view a one-bedroom unit in an old three-storey brick apartment complex.

“This is the reality,” he told guests at the State Library for the launch of the handbook. “We need 140,000 additional roofs over people’s heads in a hurry. This is a problem that will require a whole-of-government solution.”

Read more…


The 11 Ways That Consumers Are Hopeless at Math

You walk into a Gloria Jeans and see two deals for a cup of coffee. The first deal offers 33% extra coffee. The second takes 33% off the regular price.

What’s the better deal?

“They’re about equal!” you’d say, if you’re like the students who participated in a new study published in the Journal of Marketing. And you’d be wrong.

The deals appear to be equivalent, but in fact, a 33% discount is the same as a 50 percent increase in quantity.

Math time: Let’s say the standard coffee is $1 for 3 quarts ($0.33 per quart). The first deal gets you 4 quarts for $1 ($0.25 per quart) and the second gets you 3 quarts for 66 cents ($.22 per quart).

The upshot: Getting something extra “for free” feels better than getting the same for less. The applications of this simple fact are huge. Selling cereal? Don’t talk up the discount. Talk how much bigger the box is! Selling a car? Skip the MPG conversion. Talk about all the extra miles.

There are two broad reasons why these kind of tricks work.

First: Consumers don’t know what the heck anything should cost, so we rely on parts of our brains that aren’t strictly quantitative.

Second: Although humans spend in numbered dollars, we make decisions based on clues and half-thinking that amount to innumeracy.

This article By Derek Thompson shows 10 more ways consumers are bad at maths…


Blogs you may have missed

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

Volatility risk in investment property

Good news for property investment – the Australian economy is set to outperform

Has the property investment market recovered – or is it just temporary?

Brisbane mortgage stress- what they’re saying is WRONG



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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

'Saturday Summary – property investment articles 27th October 2012' have 1 comment

  1. Avatar for Property Update

    October 28, 2012 Gavin L

    Great stuff Michael – I enjoy these weekly weekend reads – I appreciate the effort you make


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