Saturday Summary – the most interesting property investment articles I’ve read this week (2013/02/02)

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.

23 winning habits of top investors – Warren Buffet & George Soros

Regular Property Update blogger Peter Wargent summarizes the book The Winning Investment Habits of Warren Buffet and George Soros in one of his recent blogs.

These men are probably the world’s most successful share investors, but the lessons are still relevant to those interested in property investment.

Here’s what average investors can learn from the habits of Soros and Buffett:

  1. First priority, preserve your capital – don’t take unnecessary risks
  2. Be risk averse – erm, yes, see point 1
  3. Develop your own investment personality which is an expression of your personality (we are all different after all)
  4. Develop your own system for choosing investments – again what works for one of us won’t necessarily work for another
  5. Specialise don’t diversify – a caveat here, diversification does have great benefits for the average investors portfolio, what Tier is inferring, I believe, is that you should aim to become a specialist in one area of your investing
  6. Minimise your tax – definitely do this, take advantage of deductions and favourable tax laws – use a good accountant to do so!
  7. Only invest in what you understand – leave complex financial instruments to the professionals – keep it simple: stocks, index funds, investment property
  8. Refuse investments that don’t meet your criteria – be able to say “no”
  9. Do your own research and continue to seek opportunities
  10. Be patient in finding your investments – don’t rush in to buying the first investment you see
  11. When you have made a decision, act instantly and go with it, be decisive
  12. Stick with a winning investment until a pre-determined exit point – in my opinion, the best investments are those which you can own forever
  13. Stick to your system religiously – don’t override your plan simply because you become jittery
  14. Admit mistakes and correct them – be aware of your own failings
  15. Treat mistakes as learning opportunities – we all make mistakes, so always keep learning…
  16. Use your experience to improve returns
  17. Don’t discuss your investments with others, be confident in yourself – discussing investments with others can destroy your confidence or introduce ‘ego’ into your strategy
  18. Delegate where appropriate – using a team of professionals can really speed your progress along
  19. Live well below your means – essential for Buffett; essential for all of us
  20. Invest for fulfillment not just for money – if you don’t enjoy the process, you will be unlikely to succeed
  21. Don’t become emotionally involved in an investment; be able to walk away if appropriate to do so
  22. Live and breathe your investing!
  23. Put your money where your mouth is

To read the rest of Pete’s summary visit his blog by clicking here.


Jan Somers dispels the myth that property is not affordable

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

With all the talk about affordability of property, this week Jan Somers, one of Australia’s leading property investing experts dispels the myth that Australian and property is unaffordable. Listen to the show as she tells the story of her own experiences that have seen her move from being a hard-working Brisbane housewife to become a multi-millionaire by investing in residential property.

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.


Demographia headlines on supposed ‘unaffordable Aussie housing’ lies and propaganda: Terry Ryder

There’s been lots in the media about housing affordability recently following the publication of the Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey, which  Terry Ryder calls of a piece of self-serving propaganda in Property Observer

Ryder says:

this document is political posturing by vested interests and should never be featured by any media outlet in Australia. It is published by a lobby group that campaigns for the end of government regulations that restrict the activities of land developers.”

Australian housing tops world’s least attainable list” was typical of the headlines that appeared around the nation and Ryder says most of the headlines were, essentially, lies yet the media ran with the outrageously inaccurate contention that Australia has the most unaffordable housing in the world and no alternative views were sought.

Ryder continues:

In my perfect world, there would be a commission of inquiry and the people who wrote this garbage would be charged. Journalists have an obligation to the public to present information that is fair, accurate and balanced. Failure to do so should be a criminal offence.

In essence, journalists no longer give a damn. If it’s a cheap and easy headline of the type journalists instinctively like – something sensationally negative – then no questions are asked.

Is it true? Who cares? It’ll sell a few papers. My first rule of successful property investment: stop reading newspapers

Read the full article in Property Observer


What will Sydney look like in 2050?

By mid-century, Sydney could be the exchange powerhouse for ideas and business in south-east Asia, eclipsing rivals such as Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo, says the dean of the faculty of built environment at the University of NSW, Alec Tzannes.

Sydney will be a more Asian-looking city, in the faces of its people and the bustling diversity of its streets where people live, shop and work.

We’ll live closer to each other, we’ll connect in digital spaces as much as in person, and we’ll stick closer to home. Instead of battling the traffic we’ll enjoy seamless journeys on multiple linked modes of transport.

We’ll harbour-hop from village to village on vessels big and small. The most spectacular central business district in the Asia-Pacific region will be home to less of the city’s big-business activity but more of its residents.

These are some interesting predictions for Australia’s largest capital city. Read more in the article in Domain which suggests that like spokes around wheels, a combined bus network and metro system in the style of Paris and London will connect the CBD with five supporting city centres and transport hubs at Wollongong, Newcastle, Penrith, Parramatta and Liverpool, in turn connected to their surrounding suburbs.

The city’s population is forecast to reach 7.5 million by mid-century, 3.2 million more than now.

Sensors in roads will keep cars at safe distance from each other and moderate their speed, but more people will travel by bus or train than car, and more people will share cars than own them.

This article contains some really interesting predictions including that suburbs will be places to work instead of places just to get to work from, and those who don’t work from home will be within 20 minutes by train, bus, cycle or walk from their office. For most people, the nine-to-five routine will seem alien and so will the cross-city commute. Work times will be “very individual” as we connect with colleagues in other time zones around the world.


Was 2012 the best year ever?

It may not feel like it, but according to The Spectator, 2012 has been the greatest year in the history of the world.

That sounds like an extravagant claim, but it is borne out by evidence. Never has there been less hunger, less disease or more prosperity.

The West remains in the economic doldrums, but most developing countries are charging ahead, and people are being lifted out of poverty at the fastest rate ever recorded. The death toll inflicted by war and natural disasters is also low. We are living in a golden age.

Take global poverty.
In 1990, the UN announced Millennium Development Goals, the first of which was to halve the number of people in extreme poverty by 2015. It emerged this year that the target was met in 2008.

And global inequality?
This, too, is lower now than any point in modern times. Globalisation means the world’s not just getting richer, but fairer too.

And what about the concerns that the oil would run out?
Ministers have spent years thinking of improbable new power sources.

As it turns out, engineers in America have found new ways of mining fossil fuel. The amazing breakthroughs in ‘fracking’ technology mean that, in spite of the world’s escalating population — from one billion to seven billion over the last two centuries — we live in an age of energy abundance.

Advances in medicine and technology mean that people across the world are living longer.
The average life expectancy in Africa reached 55 this year. Ten years ago, it was 50. The number of people dying from Aids has been in decline for the last eight years. Deaths from malaria have fallen by a fifth in half a decade.

War has historically been humanity’s biggest killer.
But in most of the world today, a generation is growing up that knows little of it. The Peace Research Institute in Oslo says there have been fewer war deaths in the last decade than any time in the last century.

And even in recession, we too benefit from medical advances.
Death rates for both lung and breast cancers have fallen by more than a third over the last 40 years.

Fifty years ago, the world was breathing a sigh of relief after the Cuban missile crisis. Young couples would discuss whether it was responsible to have children when the future seemed so dark.

But now, as we celebrate the arrival of Light into the world, it’s worth remembering that, in spite of all our problems, the forces of peace, progress and prosperity are prevailing.

Read the full article in The Spectator –


Some blogs you may have missed this week:

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

A drought of properties in Perth should push up prices

Look what’s happening in our capital city property markets – Perth and Hobart

Charlie Munger’s best quotes of all time

Six investments you should have made in 2012

Consumer sentiment suggests now is the right time to buy your next property investment

The future of capitalism: A primer for property 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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