Property Strategy Goal 2: Buying or building to sell in the next two to five years

In our last blog we talked about one of the goals you may have within your Property Strategy ‘Goal 1: Buying or building to live in the home for five years or more’ and we highlighted some important things to consider around your longer term preferred lifestyle.

Your Property Strategy is your plan for current and future property goals. So what if your goal is to turn your property over quickly to fit with your career strategy, your growing family or value you’ve added to the property?

If you are buying or building a property with the intentions to sell within a few years, consider what type of home you should purchase. You have a number of options which may include a traditional family home, a townhouse, or a block of one or more units.

As this purchase is a stepping stone within your Property Strategy you should consider how your decisions will impact on your ability to sell in a relatively quick timeframe. Some sacrifices may need to be made in the short term in order to maximise your return.

If you choose to buy or build a traditional home, in most instances 4 bedrooms will provide a better sale return than a 3 bedroom home. This may mean sacrificing a 2nd living space if your budget does not allow for both. There are ways to maximise your investment and still meet your lifestyle requirements. If you only require 3 bedrooms and prefer two living areas, consider converting the 4th bedroom into a rumpus room or lounge with bi-fold doors, then it can still be used as a 4th bedroom as required.

Alfresco areas are very popular these days as Australians love the outdoor lifestyle. This can be a design element that can add good balance between lifestyle choice and investment decision.

Consider whether any upgrades are “nice to haves” or “have to haves”. Items such as 900mm ovens and cooktops, stone benchtops, wool carpets, high ceilings etc are nice to have and add to the quality of your lifestyle but the costs of these upgrades can quickly add up and are likely to reduce your profit margin when it is time to sell.

Townhouses or units generally offer a good return if they are modern, low maintenance and in the right location. Make sure you do your research and talk to agents about what’s selling and where.

You can keep focused on your goal of selling your property quickly and enjoy living there. Don’t forget it’s a stepping stone and every property gives you insight into what you want in your next home.

Our next blog will outline tips for growing your investment property portfolio:

Goal 3: Buying or building to keep as an investment and purchase another property in two to five years 

Property Strategy Goal 1: Buying or building to live in the home for five years or more

In our last blog ‘The Importance of having a Property Strategy’ we talked about how it’s crucial to plan for your current and future property goals.

If your goal is to live in the home you are buying or building for at least five years, there are some important things to consider around your longer term preferred lifestyle prior to beginning the buying or building process.

It can seem overwhelming to choose where to start, so make a list of what you need (what you can’t live without) and what you want (the nice to haves) and make sure you consider:

  • How close the property is to amenities like schools, transport, shops, parks or bike tracks? Remember advice like ‘buy the worst house in the best street’
  • Checking with local council to research development plans scheduled for the area (e.g. new roads, railway stations)? Will they add to your property value or against it?
  • Is this a property that has scope for improvement, renovation or extensions to cater for a growing family? Is the back yard big enough? Is there room for a pool?
  • Is the area experiencing growth? A boom in apartments, cafes or shopping outlets?
  • Ensuring you know how much you can spend and do your budget before starting to search to avoid disappointment. We all want the harbour view, beach cottage or mountain hideaway but what can you really afford and how much can you borrow? Talk to your finance broker.

If you are building or considering renovations in the future, it’s important to ensure you do not over capitalise on the property for the area in which you are building. In most instances the real estate market will only bear a certain level of sale price for a certain area. Do your research first and be careful that you don’t spend more on a property than houses in the local market are selling for. Speak to a real estate agent, research the internet to see what properties are listing and selling for, and make sure that the figures add up. Ideally whatever you are investing into the property should provide a return when you do go to sell.

But as this is going to be your long term home, it’s important to remember your lifestyle should take precedence over considerations such as resale value and rentability, as these will be offset by the value a better lifestyle provides.

Look out for our next two blogs outlining tips for:
Goal 2: Buying or building to sell in the next two to five years
Goal 3: Buying or building to keep as an investment and purchase another property in two to five years