As the weather is starting to pick up and the sunnier months are within reach, it is easy to feel inspired for change. It could be a DIY addition to your property which you never got around to throughout winter or that home improvement project collecting dust in the garage. For some of you, it could perhaps be as drastic as a fresh start in a new home.
Smart property decisions require planning, so before launching into bold schemes or drastic changes it is important to look back. Whether you are a property investor, home owner or aspire to enter the market, take the time to carry out a property review.
First, the Review
Homeowners, begin by asking yourselves whether you are happy with the house you are living in. Is it the right size and location, does it have the features you need? Does it suit a growing family, is it too big?
Has the time come to downsize, upsize, move from an apartment to a house, make that tree change or seachange? Are you ready to move to a better location or house with more suitable features? Work out what you need and what you want – not necessarily the same thing. These need to be clear in your mind before you begin planning how to get them.
For investors, now is as good a time as ever to review your portfolio. This applies equally to those with numerous properties, including full-time property investors, and those with a small rental apartment. All property should work for you.
Do you have underperforming assets which should be divested? Do you need to add value to your assets, for example through improvements? Could you better use your equity to purchase new assets? Are your loans are tax effective and flexible.
First time buyers, are you ready to buy for the first time? Have you been in the market for a while and it not work out? Why not? Was your deposit too small, prices in your chosen area too high, the prospect of all those open homes too daunting? Identify the reasons, the obstacles which stood in your way. Only then will you be able to effectively plan to overcome those obstacles.
Planning and research- the key to your property success
Any plan to change should occur with research. Information is power and will help you achieve your goals.
Begin researching the basics such as mortgage rates – these are still at historic lows but there are variations between lenders – preferred areas and their prices.
If you need to sell before buying, it is ideal to get started on choosing your agent as soon as possible and get advice about what needs doing to make your home as attractive as possible to buyers.
Those intending to buy for the first time should not only begin researching affordable locations, but make a financial plan to achieve that goal. Daunted at the prospect? Seek budgeting advice and use the right tools to make informed decisions.
A realestateview.com.au survey found half the renters surveyed believed they could not afford a deposit and a 32 per cent believed they could not afford mortgage payments. So think laterally about making that dream achievable: can family help with the deposit, is there a more affordable location near your top choice, would you consider an apartment rather than a house? For affordability, would you consider buying further out and commuting? And how about investing – buying to rent out can provide a foothold on the property ladder.
Investors- look ahead in the upcoming months. Research prices and affordable locations with scope for capital growth. No time? Consider hiring a buyer’s agent to do the legwork for you. Talk to lenders about ways to make your equity work for you.
Research vacancy rates and yields. Find out what renters want, so your properties will be in demand. Therealestateview.com.au survey found a large, quality kitchen and heating and air-conditioning were the features renters saw as key.
The property market remains buoyant and in recent years, investors have made substantial gains and homeowners have seen the value of their largest and perhaps only substantial asset increase. Here is your opportunity to continue to grow your assets with the security of bricks and mortar.
Author: The Chief Executive Officer of realestateVIEW.com.au, Enzo Raimondo is an authoritative source of information for the Victorian property market and is now the vision of the industry owned real estate listing portal – realestateVIEW.com.au
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