Does your property manager have real life experience?

exchangeFor many, purchasing an investment property is a big financial commitment. Despite what many think, a large percentage of property investors are “Mum and Dad” investors, looking for a way to get ahead or establish a retirement fund. It is therefore critical that the property manager they choose to look after their property is fully engaged in ensuring that the property is expertly and carefully managed.

Whenever you are considering a property manager to look after an asset as valuable as your investment property, there are 3 key questions you should be asking:

1. Do you or have you ever owned your own property?

If your property manager has never owned their own property, can they really be aware of just how important that asset is to you? Often I hear from people complaining about how their property manager just doesn’t seem to care or understand the landlord’s point of view. Of course if they have never owned their own home, how can they be expected to understand what it means to a home owner?

2. Have you ever owned an investment property?

Wouldn’t you prefer a property manager that understands exactly where you are coming from. Only a property manager who has been a landlord as well could possibly understand each situation from the landlord’s perspective. The real life experience of being a landlord is invaluable in providing understanding and empathy for all the various high and lows of being a landlord. As I said earlier, a majority of investors are simply small-time “Mums and Dads” who cannot afford for their investment to be poorly managed.

3, What role do you have in your company?

Again, many of the complaints I hear from landlords are that their property manager just doesn’t seem to care. Many property managers are employees, who are concerned first and foremost with simply doing the minimum required to keep their job and get paid each week. Only a property manager who is an owner or director or their own company is truly invested in ensuring 100% customer satisfaction at all times. So who would you rather have managing your valuable investment; an employee concerned with covering their own hide first, or a business owner who is actively engaged in protecting his company’s professional reputation at all times?

So, when you are interviewing your next property manager put these questions at the top of your list. This way you will be certain to engage the property manager who has the best real life experience to make your property investing experience a successful one, and who has the most to gain by ensuring you are 100% happy with the service they provide.

Scott Hunt is the founding director of the Aspiron Real Estate Group and principal of Aspiron Real Estate Geelong.

 

Real Estate – what if it’s not all about the money?

elderly couple and advisor imageWhen people talk real estate, the first thing that comes to mind is the money – getting the highest price when selling, negotiating the lowest price when buying, and looking for the cheapest agency commission.

But it’s important to note that the money aspect is not the only measure of a successful real estate agency. At Aspiron Real Estate we consider these five things fundamental to our success: Continue reading

It’s the busiest season in real estate, but what’s so special about Spring?

springAre you looking at selling your property in Spring? What is it about the weather warming up that has more people putting the ‘For Sale’ sign on their home and looking for something new?

Traditionally Spring is known as the busiest time of the year for real estate agents, and locally it’s no different. In a football mad city like Geelong, as soon as the footy boots are put away and finals are over, we see buyer activity lift, auction numbers rise, and a high number of properties hit the market. We’ve found in both the Geelong and Torquay markets that sales volumes are usually at their peak during October and November. Continue reading

Choosing the right artwork can help with your Spring real estate sale

Artworks-and-Paintings-House-Livingroom-2With Spring fast approaching many people in the Geelong and Torquay real estate markets will be considering listing their home for sale. If you are thinking about this, you should give some thought to how you can add a bit of a “wow!” factor to your home simply and without major expense. A few well chosen pieces of art may just do the trick.

In this article, Mandy Molloy-Lee talks about the do and don’ts of choosing art when selling your home. Continue reading

Geelong real estate success seminar

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This morning’s Geelong real estate success seminar focused on the importance of a solid financial strategy when starting a property investment portfolio.

Our guest presenter this month was Mark Petterwood of Australian Mortgage Brokers. Mark has 20 years experience in the property and finance industries, and is a licensed mortgage broker as well as a licensed real estate agent.

The presentation began with an insight into how the banks think and what they are looking for when they assess any finance application. Mark highlighted how the banks see you purely as a business decision and that the personal touch has virtually gone out of the assessment process. Investors therefore need to know exactly what forms part of the assessment criteria including income, credit score and “genuine” savings.

Investors also need to understand some of the lending terminology, said Mark. Things like Loan to Value Ratio (LVR), Equity, and Lender’s Mortgage Insurance (LMI) are important terms to understand as they are essential to understanding your borrowing capacity and to being able to structure a long-term financial strategy.

Mark also pointed out that another essential element to understanding borrowing capacity is the amount of cash and/or equity you needed. He highlighted this in a couple of examples, before going on to demonstrate how, with a reasonable small initial deposit of $23,000 and an income of as little as $60,000 per year you can go on to then create a portfolio of 5 properties over 8 years without any further cash required.

The example Mark chose was based on purchasing house and land packages as opposed to established properties as this saved significant money on stamp duty, provided great depreciation benefits and, if done wisely, creates instant equity in each property.

Following the seminar the feedback was excellent. Attendees were impressed with the “great speaker” and “clear” information being provided and how the “property investing strategy” provided them with assurance that what they are “currently doing is structurally sound.”

Our next Geelong property success breakfast seminar will be held on Tuesday 9th July from 7:15am at John Doe Cafe, Ryrie Street Geelong. This seminar is a must for anyone thinking of subdividing or developing property. Our guest speaker with be a property developer with over 30 years experience in property development throughout Geelong and Melbourne.

To book your place at our next seminar go to our facebook page or website and follow the links.

Why Winter is a great time to sell real estate in Geelong

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Winter is upon us now and traditionally in the Geelong and Torquay real estate industry can be considered a time to consolidate after a busy Autumn and prepare for a busy Spring.

There is a common misconception among people thinking about selling their homes that they should wait until Spring. Why? Well, generally people want their gardens to look pretty and think that buyers don’t want to come into the miserable Geelong weather in Winter. Many real estate agents are probably happy to kick off their shoes for a couple of months and have a bit of a break to re-energise for Spring.

Well, guess what? People need to buy real estate in Winter as well!

There a couple of very important reasons why Winter is a great time to sell your home in Geelong, Torquay, or anywhere.

  1. There is far less competition in the marketplace. If do choose to wait until Spring to sell your home then you will be hitting the market just as the flood of properties hit. The market shifts and buyers have far more to choose from. This means that the market momentum shifts in to the buyers favour and you may need to be more flexible in the price you accept. The performance of the real estate market in Geelong, as it is anywhere, is heavily influenced by the balance of supply and demand: As the supply increases, if the demand does not increase in harmony then the market stalls and buyers gain the upper hand.
    In Winter however there is no such flood of properties. As the majority hold off, those looking for an opportunity to sell is a less crowded marketplace can capitalise. It doesn’t matter what time of year it is, there are always people needing to buying real estate in Geelong and Torquay.
  2. When it comes to people asking me when the best time to market and sell their home, I often find myself using the phrase “there’s no time like the present”. This is especially true of unique properties but can apply to any property. Because you just never know when the ideal buyer for your home is in the market. Wait until Spring and they may have already purchased a home from someone who didn’t. Real Estate is an unpredictable caper and the success of a sale often relies on being in the right place at the right time. While a quality real estate agent will make sure your home is seen in the right place, it is almost impossible to know with certainty when it i the right time to capture that special buyer.As I said, this is especially relevant to unique homes as often we are looking for that unique buyer. These types of buyers don’t necessarily wait until Winter is over, so why would you?

This year will be an unpredictable Spring with a Federal Election looming and of course, nothing happens until after the AFL grand final weekend anyway. So if you are ready to sell your home, why wait? Winter can be just as an effective time to sell in Torquay and Geelong as any other.

If you would like to discuss this article contact the Aspiron Real Estate team.

Scott Hunt

Will Fords latest Decision impact on Geelong Real Estate?

Ford Geelong

Last Week Ford Australia announced that they were pulling out of all production of all Ford motor vehicles, starting from 2016.  As somebody who is local to Geelong and does business in Geelong, obviously there are concerns as to how this is going to affect Geelong and the local economy.

Ford has been an institution in Geelong for a very long time and one of the 3 big  industry, big companies that Geelong in a lot of ways was founded on or at least that Geelong has relied on for many years along with Alcoa and Shell.

My first thoughts went to those who will lose their jobs and those whos businesses may be lost and the impact that those people will feel. I also thought about the dooms daying that’s gonna hit the media, already has, was yesterday, is tomorrow and will continue for some weeks and the ringing of hands and the woe is us mentality that the media will perpetuate because it sells papers, they will perpetuate this for some weeks because bad news sells.

Ive often thought and I don’t want to say this at the expense of the people who will lose their jobs but lets remember we have  3 years to plan for this and deal with this and to put things into place that allow us to cope with this.  There is no questions this will affect our local economy and the local community.

But I see the loss of those, not only Ford but the future loss of Alcoa and Shell because lets face it, it will happen and they tried to put these things off as long as they but its pretty clear that Geelong has to face up to the reality that the future of Geelong will be without those 3 big industry leaders and I see, I think we should all see and all Geelong people and Victorians and Australians should all see this as an opportunity and the future off Geelong without those 3 companies as a great opportunity for the betterment of Geelong’s future.

As a real estate agent I talk to people a lot and I don’t recall anyone saying to me in the last 2 or 3 years that they are moving to Geelong because they are coming to work at Ford, Alcoa or Shell.  I talk to a lot of people who work in those companies but I don’t talk to people who are moving here for that reason, they are moving here for lifestyle.

Geelong, despite having what could be considered an “Ugly Duckling” tag, that its had for many years because I think a lot of people consider and certainly before I lived here considered it as a bit of a grey old industrial city, one that was built on that industry and what people who don’t live don’t realize that there are some amazingly beautiful parts of Geelong and it really is a beautiful city with great potential.  Its on the bay, the esplanade, the water front areas the park, the Eastern Beach, some beautiful areas.  Any city would be proud and wrapped to have those natural assets.  Queens park, Newtown, Highton, Drumcondra and areas like that.  These are suburbs that would be the envy of any city.  Access to the coast and so on.  It’s a wonderful location and a wonderful city with a great future and people are moving here for lifestyle.  It’s cheaper than Melbourne, it’s a better lifestyle than Melbourne and it’s still within a 40 to 50 min drive to Melbourne.  This is the opportunity we have.  Nationally and Globally the world has to look to new industry and new technology and you know, its not going to be an overnight thing but Geelong now has an opportunity to be a leader in that and to embrace new technology and new industry.  I know that having heard industry leaders speak, business and community leaders speak in Geelong that they do know that they are going to have to embrace new technology and new industries for the future of Geelong and I 100% agree with that.  There is opportunity out there and this is going to force Geelong’s hand and the local communities had to seek them and embrace them and to bring them to Geelong and lead the way.  You know, again we have 3 years to do this before Ford leaves so you know, its not like they are leaving overnight.  We have plenty of time to prepare and get ready for this and I think in the long term and again I don’t want to belittle or gloss over the immediate impact on all the families lives in Geelong but in the long term I think Geelong as a whole will look back on this and see it as a blessing in disguise.

What are your thoughts?

Scott

Welcome Annie Vogel

We are very pleased to have welcomed Annie Vogel to the Aspiron team as a property consultant (that’s Annie on the left enjoying a day at the Geelong Cup).

Annie is a Moriac resident with over 25 years experience in sales and marketing. This vast experience has provided her with well honed negotiation skills and unrivalled knowledge of the sales process. She is a busy networker and is well known in Geelong business circles, providing her with an excellent base of contacts and potential buyers.

Annie is, and has always been, a people person. Growing up in a military family she learned to make friends quickly and easily – this is evident to all who meet her.

We are very pleased that Annie has chosen to join the Aspiron team as we know she will bring with her a wealth of experience and knowledge to the benefit of our clients.

Geelong townhouses update

2 of our 5 townhouses in Hendy Street Corio are now complete except for the landscaping. Units 1 and 2, 16 Hendy Street are really high quality townhouses which, in any other part of Geelong would fetch in the high $300K range. Here they present an opportunity to purchase under $300,000. Everything is high quality about these units; quality flooring, stone bench top, high ceilings, quality fittings. If you want to live in style but don’t want to pay the price, then these are definitely worth a look.