Weekend Reads – Must reads articles from the last week

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

The weekend will be over before you know it, so enjoy some weekend reading…and please forward to your friends by clicking the social link buttons.

Market View: It’s not just avocados smashing Sydney’s first-home buyer prospects

They call them the ‘smashed avocado generation’ but it is really just the brunch costs holding first home buyers back?

An article on Domain.com.au has suggested that perhaps before judging the price of brunch – we should be looking at the price of housing.

Do we really need to forgo even the smallest luxury in life to own a home in Sydney? avocado-829092_1920

Winning the lottery or a lump sum inheritance from your third cousin twice removed seems as far fetched as the notion of getting a foot on the ladder.

Let’s take investor activity out of the equation (because we know its booming) and focus on finance approved for those who are actually going to reside in the purchased home.

This will shed some light on first home buyer activity.

During 2009, almost 59,000 first time buyers seized the opportunity to become home owners in NSW according to ABS finance data.

First home buyers were enjoying smashed avocados in their own home as this sector made up a massive 30.8 per cent of owner occupied housing loans approved for the year.

The peak in activity was certainly bolstered by the Government’s First Home Owner Boost, an initiative to support buyers through the global financial crisis. Subsidised stamp duty, interest rates at 50-year lows and a struggling housing market helped to lessen the burden.first home buyers

The fact first home buyer numbers in NSW are currently at the lowest level on record illustrates the struggle to home ownership is real. It cannot all be blamed on so-called frivolous spending.

Almost 16,500 first home buyer loans were approved during 2016. While non-first home buyers were at record highs, with just over 186,000 loans approved in NSW.

The disparity between 2009 and 2016 first home buyer activity is extreme.

To put current activity levels into perspective, the proportion of NSW first home buyers to non-first home buyers is well below the long-term average of 17.4 per cent – by more than half.

Graphic data: ABS

Only 8.1 per cent of owner-occupied loans approved last year were first home buyers.

Under the current low interest rate environment a higher proportion of tenants transitioning to home owners is anticipated.

Highlighting the struggle to save a deposit.

Sydney is the most expensive place to purchase and one of the most expensive to rent compared to the other state and territory capitals, making for a tough path to home ownership.

Read the full article here

Outdoor structures that qualify for capital works allowance + Why it is OK not to invest interstate + Property Investment 101

Another great Real Estate Talk show produced by Kevin Turner.

Michael Yardney shares his property investment 101 for rookies – but it is much more than that.  


Brad Beer from BMT Tax Depreciation explains what a property investor should be aware of when doing any renovations to the yard in an investment property.

Cate Bakos a buyers agent, joins us this week to answer some questions we have received from listeners who are deciding if investing interstate is for them.

Andrew Mirams shares some of his personal experiences with us this week as our feature guest.

Simon Cohen one of the directors from AuctionWiz, a company streamlining the bidding process for buyers, he joins us to discuss what it’s all about.

If you don’t already subscribe to this excellent weekly internet based radio show do so now by clicking here.

Wages growth still stuck in a rut

It would seem that Australia’s wage growth is in need of a makeover, having shown very little growth.

This Blog by Pete Wargent shows the statistics behind the results. australian coins

Wages growth in a rut

Private sector wages grew by just 0.4 per cent in the December quarter, while public sector wages grew by 0.6 per cent, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Over the year private sector wages growth of 1.8 per cent was well behind the 2.3 per cent growth seen in the public sector.


Nationally across all sectors annual wages growth remained stuck at 1.8 per cent, equalling the record nominal low seen in the preceding quarter.


Mining struggles

Perhaps not surprisingly the weakest wages growth was seen in the mining sector at just 1 per cent in 2016.

The strongest wages growth was seen in services sectors such as healthcare and social assistance (2.4 per cent wages growth in a strongly expanding workforce), and education and training (2.4 per cent).

Manufacturing wages grew by 1.8 per cent, as did wages in the construction sector.

Read the full article here

World record for Melbourne’s fastest selling agent?

There’s no doubt the real estate industry is fast paced – with selling agents constantly going a million miles an hour.

But it would seem one agent, has taken out all the records.

An article on realestatebusiness.com.au has reported that one Melbourne agent has set new standards on the speed of a property sale.

A Melbourne agent is used to turning his listings over quickly, selling 80 per cent of properties within a single day. agent house

But last week, he might have set a new world record for speed.

Zed Nasheet of LJ Hooker Hampton Park sold a property exactly 15 minutes after he had secured the listing.

The property sold for $420,000, $70,000 more than the vendor’s expectations.

Known already as one of Australia’s fastest selling agents, now Mr Nasheet has applied to have the feat included in the Guinness World Records.

“I want to be the world’s number one agent,” Mr Nasheet told REB, adding, “I want to hold the title.

I want to be the first real estate agent from Melbourne, Australia that sells properties in the $400,000 to $1 million range, the fastest in the world.”

Mr Nasheet is convinced his 15-minute deal is a world record, saying, “Nobody is going to be quicker than that.”melbourne

He attributes his success in speed-selling to having excellent rapport with all his clients, both sellers and buyers.

“Most agents focus on finding vendors that are selling.

When a buyer calls them in, they’ll say, ‘Okay sir, I’ll give you a call when I get something’.

In reality, they don’t return their phone calls,” Mr Nasheet said.

“I work harder on my buyers because they turn into vendors one day.

Most agents don’t get that concept.”

Read the full article here

The Oscars might be more predictable than you may think

With the glamorous Oscars just around the corner, the questions on everyone’s mind is – who will win?

Whilst there is always a favourite front runner, it would seem that being the ‘2nd’ choice is the way to go as shown in this article from Business Insider.

So will your favourite win? Stay tunned…

This week, most of the major figures in film-making will gather in Hollywood for the 89th annual Oscars ceremonyparamount-studios-754874_1280

You can bank on seeing a few painfully inane red carpet interviews, several fawning acceptance speeches and some jokes that fall flat.

In all likelihood, there will be one more certainty on the night – an award or two the logic of which will be questioned for years to come.

It’s now over a decade since race-relations melodrama Crash pipped Brokeback Mountain to the 2006 Best Picture award and it still leads most lists as one of history’s least explicable choices.

But despite the occasional curve ball, the Oscars are actually remarkably predictable – if you look in the right place for information.

If you want to know who’s going to win the awards, your best bet is the bookmakers – especially if you leave it late enough.

By the time the ceremony rolls around (after the Golden Globes, BAFTAs and Screen Actors Guild Awards have been and gone) the betting agencies generallyhollywood-sign-754876_1920 have a great handle on who the Academy will recognise.

For example, since 2004, the bookmakers’ favourite has won Best Actor every year apart from one (in 2009, Sean Penn was narrow second favourite but won for Milk.)

Over the same period, only two Best Actress favourites have missed out on the Oscar, and both of those winners were second favourites.

In fact, across the six main categories – Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor and Best Supporting Actress – you have to go back a full nine years to find the last time an award was not won by the favourite or second favourite.

Click here for the full article

Weekend video: 7 amazing optical illusions


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