Saturday Summary – the most interesting property investment articles I’ve read this week (2013/04/20)

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.

Good news for our property markets!

According to property analyst Michael Matusik while we were busy eating Easter eggs some serious stuff happened regarding the housing market.

1. Housing starts. – building approvals rose 3% in February, with alterations & additions lending reaching an all-time high.

2. New spending. – The low interest environment, coupled with buoyant share markets & improving consumer confidence is supporting retail activity.

3. Interest rates. – The cash rate remained on hold at 3% & for the fourth straight month. It seems to me that the RBA thinks the housing market is in recovery & that interest rates are historically cheap – or to paraphrase, “sooner rather than later lock in your interest rates.”

4. Population growth. – Annual population growth is likely to be in the 350,000 to 400,000 pa range over the next couple of years.

New dwelling construction is currently averaging 142,000 per annum – which is well below the current population growth of 382,000 & underlying housing demand of about 170,000 per annum.

5. Household wealth. – The new financial wealth of Australian households rose by $63 billion last quarter or by 4% to $1,635 billion – a record high. Australian households hold $759 billion in cash & deposits, which represents 23% of all household assets. Home buyers are also well ahead in their repayment schedules.

6. House prices. – According to RPData-Rismark, capital city home prices rose 1.3% in March to stand at 2.4% higher than a year ago.

Read his full report here


How do you know when it’s time to buy another 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.

Stuart Wemyss from Pro Solutions tells us what he says when someone asks him if its time to buy another property
Tom Panos tells us about the first property he bought
Peter Wargent gives his thoughts on today’s overpriced property
Mat Steinwede from McGrath Central Coast talks about removing emotion from your property transactions
Michael Yardney talks about commercial property investments

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.


5 silly slips property buyers make with body corporates

Your Investment Property Magazine recently bare in mind the five most common body corporate mistakes real estate investors make. They are:

1: Forgetting the financials

In the rush and excitement that goes into buying a unit, many investors fail to have a professional scrutinise the books and records of the owners corporation. This leaves them clueless to its current finances and unaware of the issues it might be facing.

2: Not looking at the repairs

Investors just as easily forget to see what the main targets of repair work have been in the past and whether repairs have been done quickly. This is usually as simple as getting a hold of past committee meeting minutes.

3: Getting caught up in the now

Distracted by the unit’s current sleek good looks and new façade, many buyers fail to check if the body corporate has adequately planned for future maintenance expenses. They also fail to make sure that the sinking fund stacks up to long-term maintenance planned for the future.

4: Being a ghost landlord

Many investors never bother to find out who the contact person is if problems come up. The solution is to take an active interest in what goes on. Attend the annual general meeting and consider becoming a member of the building’s executive committee.

5: Falling for agent sweet talking

Hanging on every word their real estate agent says, many buyers forget to double check promises that the building is pet friendly. Then it turns out that pets are about as welcome as hawkers selling useless trinkets or people trying to get new members to join their religious group.

To read the rest of the article plus other expert comments click here


Home value increases currently driven by middle-priced market

RPData’s Cameron Kusher explains that mid-range suburbs across Australia’s capital cities are currently attracting the greatest increases in home values, while values across the affordable city suburbs and some of the most expensive suburbs have fallen.

Across the middle-priced capital city suburbs, 60% of these have recorded growth of 1.6% over the year to February 2013, whereas values have fallen by as much as -0.9% and -0.6% across affordable suburbs, and the most expensive suburbs respectively.

Read the full report in Property Observer here


House price outlook turns bullish: survey

More Australians expect home prices to rise in the year ahead than at any time since mid-2010, according to Domain which quotes a survey showing further evidence that low mortgage rates are working to revive the housing market.

The survey by Westpac and the Melbourne Institute also showed far fewer consumers now feared there would be a drop in prices, lessening one potential impediment to demand.

The survey’s index of house price expectations jumped to 53.9 percent in April, from 26.7 percent in January. The index measures respondents anticipating rising prices minus those expecting a fall.

That was the highest reading since July 2010 and reflected in part the Reserve Bank’s efforts to stimulate the market with rate cuts in October and December.

“The sharp upgrade in house price expectations is evidence that Australia’s housing recovery is consolidating,” said Matthew Hassan, a senior economist at Westpac.

“It implies that buyers will be less inclined to hold off in anticipation of lower prices and sellers will be less inclined to accept ‘lowball’ price offers.”

The survey found 62 per cent of respondents expected home prices to rise over the next 12 months, while 30 per cent looked for a steady outcome and 8 per cent for falls. The latter was the lowest since April 2010.

A moderate rise in home prices in recent months, combined with gains in equities, have also helped rebuild household wealth and underpinned a hefty increase in retail sales this year.


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:

Our household balance sheets are in good shape as we pay off our mortgages

This week’s Property News video with Kevin Turner | 15th April

Do you have a system for winning at Blackjack…and at life?

Broad ‘middle’ priced market driving growth in home values

Our property markets are recovering but not yet recovered




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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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