Don’t be spooked by gloomy economic forecasts: right now there are great bargains to be had for the canny property investor.
A slowing of the economy and a decrease in demand for housing has created a once in a lifetime opportunity for buying solid investments in areas with strong growth drivers.
According to Head of Property Research at The Investors Club, David Cross there are fewer buyers in the market place and more properties available for sale.
“This means that properties are taking longer to sell and vendors are dropping their prices in an attempt to move them on,” Mr Cross explained. “Don’t sit back and watch when the market is mature, buy when prices are low.”
Mr Cross said the Key to buying an investment property in any market was locating the areas in each city that have growth drivers.
“Some suburbs will do well even if overall city property growth figures are not favourable. Buy in areas with strong demand from renters; focus on areas with forecasted growth in population, employment, industry and infrastructure.
“We have been through tumultuous times before and no doubt will again,” he explained. “It’s better to buy now when prices are reasonable than wait for the boom and be priced out of the market. As long as you are guided by a few important tips, you will yield good returns in the long term.”
The Investors Club 8 top tips for buying in a slow market
1. Locate demand: Research ABS data to locate suburbs/areas with a minimum of 2% population growth forecast, jobs growth, and infrastructure projects to match. You want to make sure your property is always in demand from renters.
2. Locate short supply: Check with the local council to find out if there are more housing developments proposed for the area. Is there a restriction on supply coming through? You want short supply.
3. Rental opportunities: Check with leasing agents – what type of property is in the most demand from that suburb? Is it housing or units? Is it 3-4 bed house or 1-2 bedroom unit?
4. Vacancy periods: Ask agents how many days properties are vacant before tenants are found? Get information in writing to ensure veracity. Lower vacancy indicates short supply and potential for rental growth.
5. Quality construction. Look for solid, long lasting, low maintenance materials for better capital growth.
6. Use a cash flow analysis calculator: Make sure you can afford to hold the property if the rates go up 2%.
7. Pay the right price. Which property (if all other points are equal) gives the highest rent return?
8. Finance: Don’t fix your rates if above the long term average. Choose an interest only loan and focus on paying off credit cards and other on deductible loans. Banks want you to fix at the moment. However, is this because they know rates are falling?