Victor Kumar came to Australia from Fiji in 1997 with his wife with only $4,500 in their pockets. More than a decade later, they have successfully built an impressive multi-property portfolio with assets in some of the major cities of the ‘Land Down Under’ — all after he asked one simple question: ‘How do people make money in this country?’
The couple arrived in their new home country as high-demand employees and while they were almost instantly able to land jobs with good salary packages, they knew that they had to work harder to afford comfortable living.
“One of the first questions I asked my brother-in-law, who is a true blue Aussie, was ‘How do people make money in this country?’ because I thought, we’re in a new country so we might as well make something out of it. He mentioned ‘bricks and mortar,’ and to be honest, I had no clue what ‘bricks and mortar’ was,” he shared.
“We were given an Aussie slang dictionary, so I [got] that and said, ‘Okay, what’s bricks and mortar?’ I realized they were houses.”
Victor and his wife made it a point to educate themselves about property investment while temporarily residing in his sister’s garage. Soon enough, they were ready to roll the dice—starting with buying their principal place of residence.
However, like many budding property investors, they had more hurdles to jump before they could actually begin engaging in the business of creating wealth through property.
“[We were] freezing in the night. We had all our stuff put on shelves above our bed, all our possessions. We’d go to work and we’d hear about these people having beautiful homes and so forth, so I decided to go to the bank and try for a loan,” Victor said.
“They turned around and said, ‘We can’t lend you money even though you’ve shown good savings history because you actually don’t have any credit history with us.’ I got so upset that I actually walked back home because I forgot I had a car — I didn’t have a car back in Fiji.”
Things started to look brighter for the couple when they found reliable property professionals to formally introduce them to the venture and show them the ins and outs of the landscape.
“One of the things I did was I persevered. I kept asking the question ‘How can I get a loan?’ Eventually, one of the real estate agents pointed me in the direction of a broker and he got us our first loan. That got us to our first property,” Victor said.
“Instinctively, I gravitated towards a cheaper price property as opposed to a more expensive one. The first house I bought… a year after I arrived was a $137,000 three-bedroom house… That became pretty much the cornerstone of my portfolio,” the property investor shared further.
To this day, Victor considers his first property as the “crown jewel” of his property portfolio.
He concluded: “I didn’t expect it to go as well as it did. Every property after that, most of them [have] had good stories to them. Some go really well in terms of growth, others are much slower. You just have to be patient with them.”
Tune in to Victor Kumar’s episode on The Smart Property Investment Show find out how hard work, perseverance, education, and a dogged never-give-up attitude set him on a path to success.