To realise your investment goals and turn pipe dreams into economic realities, you need to stop worrying about what could go wrong.
Blogger: Victor Kumar, Right Property Group
If you want to get started in property investing, or turn your current fortunes around, you must do the following:
¤ Set realistic goals: They need to be tangible and directly related to property so you don’t just end up buying real estate, but actually progress towards your desired outcome – i.e. the reason for buying
¤ Research an area: How to decipher what’s really happening in an area as opposed to what statistical data tells you – i.e. the region to invest, in line with the property clock
¤ Micro-research an area: Being able to cotton on to changes that are imminent or already underway that will accelerate growth
¤ Make money on the way in: Buying below market value. It is all about revenue
Despite all these milestones in property investing, a majority of would-be investors rarely go beyond these steps. In short, they become information junkies who are paralysed by the fear of getting things wrong and don’t take that leap. The common fears I come across when I deal with would-be and first-time investors are really irrational when you take an in-depth look.
One of the mistakes would-be investors make is equating making mortgage repayments on an investment property to that of owning your own home, with the expectation that as the owner, you would have to come up with the whole of the mortgage repayments.
In their over-analysis they forget that the tenant contributes to a majority (if not all) of the mortgage repayments – provided, of course, the investor has purchased well and adhered to sound investment principles. Naturally, you do have to have a contingency for all other associated expenses, including vacancy.
Would-be investors can also get caught in what I call "analysis paralysis" – they think they have to do everything themselves and fear that they do not have the skills.
In my early investing life I was a victim of this. I was presented with a three-bedroom villa that had cigarette stains on walls and the carpet was, well, non-existent. It was being sold for the price of a two-bedroom villa because of its condition. I agonised over the decision to buy or not for two weeks and eventually the agent sold it to another astute investor.
What was I agonising over? How to paint and replace carpet? At the time it appeared overwhelming because I had forgotten the ‘why’ – why was I investing? Had I answered that question, the how and who of the equation would have been taken care of.
In life, people agonise over decisions, afraid of getting things wrong. They eventually make the decision, but they are still wary of implementing the changes.
In my office is a picture of five frogs on a log, with a big numeral "5" superimposed, given to me by my seven-year-old daughter. It is very pertinent. The question at the bottom asks (in typical seven-year-old language) “Five frogs sitting on a log, two decided to jump, how many left?”
The answer of course is five!
And the moral? Once you decide on a course of action, having addressed the milestones outlined in the previous articles, take the leap.