Daniel Walsh started learning about investment when he was 16, and by the time he was 20 he had bought his first property. Six years later, the 26-year-old investor has seven properties worth $2.9 million in his portfolio. Here's how he did it.
His journey proves that no one is ever too young to learn about property investing. Like most investors, Daniel equipped himself with knowledge, the right mindset and some good guidance from professionals to make his mark early.
1. Learn from all possible sources – from podcasts to people
“When I’m on the trains and that, I just listen to podcasts. I listen to YouTube. So I just go through pretty much all of those and that’s something I can do while I’m sitting around doing nothing. I can just listen to those podcasts, get advice. I also subscribe to Sky Business Channel, go onto Your Money, Your Call. There’s all those different avenues at the moment. They’re giving free advice, these people, experts in what they do, and they give free advice away. So, I think that if you want to learn a lot more, you have to get actively involved in trying to find out where these property experts are, what they’re doing and how they’re giving their information away,” Daniel told Smart Property Investment.
Aside from doing his own research, he also takes advice from financial professionals to guide him in his journey.
“Being able to have the time to just invest into learning is what is key to be a successful investor. You need to have the time to be able to do it. If you don’t have the time, outsource it,” he added.
2. Look beyond your own backyard
Budding investors also need to be comfortable in diversifying their profile. After all, success cannot be found in one location or market.
Throughout his investment journey, Daniel made sure to look beyond his own backyard and check out different property markets in Australia to consistently make the most out of his wealth creation efforts.
He explained: “Houses never go down. It’s always cheaper to buy now than it is in 10 years’ time. Too many people, they look at it now and they think, ‘It’s too overpriced. I can’t buy now. You know, the market’s gone up’. They always think they’ve missed the boat. You’ve never missed the boat. There are so many markets within markets. There are all different states, so start looking abroad, start looking at different states, start looking at those markets that are more affordable.”
3. Create a well-balanced portfolio
According to Daniel: “I think (all my properties) complement each other. I have some that will have a lot of capital growth and others that have just rental yield and some that I invested just for the rental yield to complement the other ones with the negative cash flow. I think, if you have a well-balanced portfolio, you shouldn’t have anything that’s extremely bad. Some might not perform but your overall portfolio should be sitting around that neutral mark when you are building.”
4. Don’t be afraid to start as young as you could
While he is arguably among the youngest to start an investment journey, Daniel believes that he could still have started earlier.
Looking back at his 16-year-old self and his earliest financial decisions, he wished that he had acted upon his research a lot sooner than he did.
“I wished I had leveraged myself harder. When I started investing, I pretty much was at that age when I was a bit scared of debt. So, I had researched it all. Like many people, you research but you never actually act on it. So, I did that for a long time and then I started to actually act on it at the age of 20 and realised that I should have acted even earlier. I had the money sitting there. I’d saved the money up and I just didn’t act on it early enough. If I had done that, I could have been even in a better position. But they are lessons learnt and that is something that I take full advantage of today,” Daniel said.
So, young ones, what are you waiting for? There is no right age to engage in the property market, and there is no better time to do it than now – just take it from Daniel Walsh.
Tune in to the young investor’s episode in The Smart Property Investment Show to know more about how he researches the market, balances his portfolio and manages his tax each fortnight, and why he believes that looking beyond one’s own backyard at different property markets could allow a budding investor the opportunity to begin their own investment journey.