Saturday Summary – the most interesting property investment articles I’ve read this week (2013/03/09)

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.

A new source of free property research data

One of the biggest changes for real estate investors I’ve seen since I bought my first property investment in the early 1970’s is the availability of research data. This was unheard of in the 70’s and 80’s.

When this type of information first became available to the average investor it was very expensive and of course now there’s a plethora of sources of free data. RPData, Residex, Australian Property Monitors, the A.B.S and of course the various state real estate institutes.

By the way… none of them can agree on the median price of any given city, but that’s another story.

Now Louise Christopher from SQM Research is providing a free weekly asking price index, vendor sentiment index and weekly rent index. You can see these by state and even drill down to individual suburbs.

Click here to explore this new resource.


Easy ways to quickly add renovation value

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:
Cherie Barber gives some renovation tips
Greville Pabst explains why he thinks our property markets have turned the corner
Jane Slack- Smith tells us about a women’s only forum
Ken Raiss answers another listener’s question about self managed superfunds
Louis Christopher discusses a new research data information service for investors

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.


Ten reasons Australia is the envy of the world

David Koch reminds us that Australia is the best country in which to live, work and play. In an article on he says:

Financially and economically, we are the envy of the world. Think about it; no economic recession for 21 years, avoided Asian Financial Crisis in the ’90s, avoided Global Financial Crisis in 2008-12, low unemployment, low inflation, solid economic growth and strong financial system.
We’re by no means perfect, and there’s plenty we can improve, but international economic think-tanks like the International Monetary Fund and OECD are quite right to praise our performance.

So why are we an economic miracle? These are Kochie’s top 10 reasons.

  1. We’re globally competitive
  2. Right place, right time to benefit from the so-called “Asian Century”.
  3. A productive workforce – we are a smart and hard-working labour force, thanks to top public and tertiary education systems.
  4. Sensible politicians – Kochie said this – not me
  5. Free markets- as a trading nation, the development of free trade agreements has played a huge role in opening new markets, building jobs and adding to exports.
  6. Strong banks
  7. Independent Reserve Bank- which plays an important stabilising role in the economy and can be a counter to poor government economic decisions.
  8. A sound legal system which enhances business confidence, promotes transparency and helps fight corruption.
  9. Entrepreneurial Aussie spirit, which makes for a resilient business community that is always looking forward.
  10. Good migration policies – we are a small, ageing population in a big world.Our business migration scheme has targeted good entrepreneurs to bring their skills, and money, to Australia to build a better life


Finding multiple income streams

Regular Property Update blogger Pete Wargent recently discussed how property investment is a little like playing the game of monopoly in his Escape the Rat Race Blog.

Firstly he explains why you should acquire multiple streams of income and then suggests:

Another option is to take the Monopoly approach of owning multiple investment properties, which fits in well with those words of advice I received as a school leaver: owning investment property tends to help with reducing expenditure in other areas and certainly it employs leverage.

There is some price risk in so doing, of course, so it makes sense to learn from how Monopoly players win that game.

Acquiring properties steadily over time reduces market timing risk, and risk can also be diversified through owning properties in different locations. When dealing with other players, buyers would be wise to avoid paying too much for any title they acquire, by buying at the right price.

Another strategy employed by winning Monopoly players is adding value to their titles through developing them.

In the board game this usually means adding houses to the titles (I only recently discovered that expert and world champion Monopoly players build many green houses but few red hotels in order to create housing shortages for the other players!)

In the real world, property investors do indeed also look for housing shortages through investing in areas with tight rental vacancies and a limited available supply.

You can read the rest of his blog here: Escape the Rat Race.


Warren Buffet’s best quotes:

The Telegraph recently shares some of Warren Buffet’s best quotes:

On investing

“Rule No.1: Never lose money. Rule No.2: Never forget rule No.1”

“It’s far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price”

“Only buy something that you’d be perfectly happy to hold if the market shut down for 10 years”

“We simply attempt to be fearful when others are greedy and to be greedy only when others are fearful”

“Why not invest your assets in the companies you really like? As Mae West said, “Too much of a good thing can be wonderful”

On success

“Of the billionaires I have known, money just brings out the basic traits in them. If they were jerks before they had money, they are simply jerks with a billion dollars”

“The business schools reward difficult complex behavior more than simple behavior, but simple behavior is more effective” “

You do things when the opportunities come along. I’ve had periods in my life when I’ve had a bundle of ideas come along, and I’ve had long dry spells. If I get an idea next week, I’ll do something. If not, I won’t do a damn thing” “

Can you really explain to a fish what it’s like to walk on land? One day on land is worth a thousand years of talking about it, and one day running a business has exactly the same kind of value”

“You only have to do a very few things right in your life so long as you don’t do too many things wrong”

On helping others

“If you’re in the luckiest 1pc of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99pc”

“It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently”

“I don’t have a problem with guilt about money. The way I see it is that my money represents an enormous number of claim checks on society. It’s like I have these little pieces of paper that I can turn into consumption. If I wanted to, I could hire 10,000 people to do nothing but paint my picture every day for the rest of my life. And the GNP would go up. But the utility of the product would be zilch, and I would be keeping those 10,000 people from doing AIDS research, or teaching, or nursing. I don’t do that though. I don’t use very many of those claim checks. There’s nothing material I want very much. And I’m going to give virtually all of those claim checks to charity when my wife and I die.”

“It’s class warfare, my class is winning, but they shouldn’t be”

“My family won’t receive huge amounts of my net worth. That doesn’t mean they’ll get nothing. My children have already received some money from me and Susie and will receive more. I still believe in the philosophy – FORTUNE quoted me saying this 20 years ago – that a very rich person should leave his kids enough to do anything but not enough to do nothing”


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:

Supply side economics & what it means for property investment.
What’s a more popular property investment- apartments or houses?
The invisible hand- what’s it got to do with property investment?
9 ways successful people beat stress
23 winning habits of the world’s most successful investors




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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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