Please wait while the changes you have made are submitted. This may a take a few minutes depending on the nature of the update


They Told Me Not To Do It!

March 28, 2012

Back in the distant, early nineties, I was in the market to buy my first solo real estate investment. I was living with my mum at the time and was less than sophisticated when it came to making a big splash into the property market. In fact, all I could think about was how my carefree life was about to end when I became burdened with perpetual debt.

Whilst I had an instinctive whiff that I was doing the right thing, I didn’t have a fully braced understanding of how good my choice of property actually was.

To put this all in context, it was the early nineties where interest rates were soaring on stratospheric planes and apparently no-one in their right minds would buy property with the crushing weight of those 15% or so rates! But I did.

The property I had set my heart on was a one bedroom flat, yes, that’s what they were called in the nineties, a term of a bygone era, a little aesthetically bland for today’s palate. In any case, I was warned not to buy a one bedroom flat because who would want to live in a one bedder? But I did.

Now, as to the location, well that is a delicious detail I relish in the retelling of this tale…Port Melbourne. “But why are you buying there? It’s blue collar, run down, no-one would want to live there!” truly, this was the calibre of comment I was to receive time after time. But, I didn’t listen, I bought it anyway. Even though it was a naïve foray into property, my instinct was telling me it was a good buy, it made sense to me and I could see its potential even before Mirvac and Grocon changed the economic nature of the suburb. It was positioned a couple of blocks from the beach, directly behind Bay St, opposite an exquisite park adorned with a cavalcade of majestic palms, north facing so as to drench me in early morning sunshine as I looked out onto the park from my lounge room sipping my caffelatte.

I still own that little one bedder and guess what? It is bringing more in rent than some of the houses I own, it is definitely less maintenance than the houses and when it comes to renting, it is always snapped up in a frenzy!

What’s the moral of this story? I guess it is this: there will always be voices telling you what’s best for you but not always in your best interest. They think their way is bullet proof and they’ve come to this conclusion because…well, they don’t really know. It just seems that way or everyone does it that way, therefore it must be right. What is evident is that their opinion is just that, an opinion, often uniformed and sometimes misinformed. It is up to you to take charge of your own future because ultimately, they have followed their dream and only you can follow yours.

If I were to have listened all those years ago, I would have been paralysed by fear; fear of making a mistake, fear of buying in a low socio-economic area, fear of not being able to rent out a one bedroom flat. But I didn’t. I chose to take the risk and follow my dreams. I was scared but I was excited too and I didn’t let fear dictate the terms of my decision.

I look back on that time and am grateful that I don’t have to say…if only I’d bought that flat when I had the chance. I had a choice to live my life without regret and I took it. That decision taken many years ago, makes me smile a lot today!

Co-ownership is a way of buying houses that is fast gaining traction in Australia. It is obvious to anyone who flicks through a paper or listens to the news or hears the ubiquitous conversations; property ownership in Australia is fast becoming depressingly unattainable. Teaming up with someone, be it relative, friend or someone who shares your intentions to buy a house, suddenly gives rise to the real possibility of home ownership. It not only makes sense but it is smart.

There will be those who will give you seventy-two reasons why you shouldn’t do it. Their claims will echo the fear of making a mistake, buying with a stranger, getting into something you don’t know etc. Whilst these claims have foundation, they can be systematically eliminated with due diligence. Invest in a contract to protect yourselves; take time to get to know this person/persons, perhaps share first.

Be mindful that co-buying need not be forever. It can be a period of two years, after which time, you can sell and take your respective share and plough it into a deposit for your own home. It is possible. Can the same be said for your current situation? Are you able to take this step from where you stand now? The longer you wait, the less affordable this option will be. Time coupled with action are your best friends, treat them with intelligence and respect.

Headlines in The Herald Sun March 1, 2010, read: Boom Town Hits $1b. It went on to say: Tim Fletcher, of Fletcher’s Real Estate, said it was possible that the median price of a home in Melbourne would hit $650,000 in a few months and $1 million within six years.

From the same article, Catherine Cashmore of JPP Buyers Advocates, said: the $1billion boom was causing despair among buyers trying to get into the market.
“I have never come across such high anxiety in buyers. It’s playing on buyers’ minds because they are only seeing the property boom and they despair that they’ll never be able to afford a home.”

Another article from the Herald Sun March 1, 2010, titled: An Average Aussie Bloke,
quotes John Symond from Aussie Home Loans, as saying this: Houses are just too expensive and the dream of home ownership is becoming a nightmare for many people.

“Governments are milking the golden goose dry with all their various taxes and the way we’re going it’s not going to be possible for younger people to own homes.”

Home Address is able to offer you real options. Take a good look at our site and register as a potential co-buyer.

Remember: Time coupled with action are your best friends, treat them with intelligence and respect.