Finance advice

Property investors in trouble when rates rise

By Staff Reporter

Property investors are increasingly over-extending themselves and will struggle when rates inevitably rise, according to an investment advice firm.

Grayden Taylor, Elston Portfolios' investment manager, said the current low interest rate environment was presenting Australians with “tempting” conditions and many were “failing to consider their financial situation” in the context of a market with higher rates.

“There is no doubt that investing in a low interest rate economy is preferable, because the lower cost makes it easier to hold, and the investor may be able to afford to make larger payments on the principle of the loan,” he said.

“However, we have been existing in this low interest rate environment for around two years now, and it can be easy to forget that interest rates are at historic lows, and are inevitably going to rise – whether it’s in nine months or two years, it will happen.”

Mr Taylor said capital city investors who are taking on a high level of gearing would be the hardest hit.

“What we are starting to see is buyers are looking at how much of a loan they can afford to service with interest rates at current levels, and are therefore able to borrow more and pay more for a property.

“However, if interest rates rise only 2.5 per cent, this would double the cash rate. Given this is such a low base, we are looking at a dramatic impact on repayments. In fact, it is much more than we have seen in previous interest rate cycles, just because rates have dropped so much.”

Investors should always consider the worst case scenario when investing in a historically low interest rate environment, according to Mr Taylor.

“Times are good now, and banks are lending generously because investors can afford to borrow more. However, the amount of prospective buyers will most certainly drop when rates are higher, and lending approvals therefore are lower,” he said.

“Investors in mortgage stress because they overextended when interest rates were low will be most affected when demand is significantly lower, and there are fewer buyers with money to spend.”

Mr Taylor said investors needed to be particularly cautious of added complications, such as servicing a loan at a higher interest rate when gearing in a self-managed super fund.

“Contribution caps in place may make it more difficult to service a loan as rates rise, particularly when the loan to value ratio is too aggressive. This leads to an increased likelihood of being a forced seller at the wrong time, if the super fund doesn’t have the liquid assets to service a loan.”

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Will Magee has had ambitions to enter into the Australian property market for quite some time, but it has been more than just finances holding him back.  Having been granted permanent residency just two weeks ago, Will is wasting no time and is now in the process of signing papers and finding his first investment property.

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In this episode of the Smart Property Investment Show, Will joins host Phil Tarrant to share why he is purchasing his first property in partnership with his brother, discuss the complications that can arise from such a strategy, and unpack the ongoing plan for building a joint property portfolio with his brother.

Will will also share how they approached saving for their first property, why he is taking out the mortgage in his name exclusively, and share their savings plan for the year ahead.

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

If you have any questions about what you heard today, any topics of interest you have in mind, or if you’d like to lend your voice to the show, email [email protected] for more insights!

RELATED AREAS OF INTEREST:

From property in Australia to a ski lodge in Japan
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Should a real estate title be in one person’s name only?

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Median house prices in regional Victoria outperformed that of Melbourne in the June quarter, the latest REIV figures reveal. 

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Median house prices in the regions rose 4.0 per cent to $419,500 but in Melbourne they dipped by 0.6 of a percentage point to $840,000.

The result in Melbourne was due to a 0.8 of a percentage point fall in prices achieved at auction; this was despite a lift of 2.3 per cent in private sales.

Inner Melbourne suffered due to auction prices, where median prices fell by 4.9 per cent to $1,459,000 but it was middle Melbourne that was hardest hit, with a 5.4 per cent drop to $974,500.

Outer Melbourne had a good quarter with the median rising by 0.5 of a percentage point to $681,000.

Apartment prices in regional Victoria grew by 3.7 per cent to $304,500 while the metro media was up by 0.5 of a percentage point to $604,000.

REIV President Richard Simpson said that despite fewer sales, many sectors of the market were performing well.

“2017 was a bumper year and while the trendline has flattened, despite the fall in median house prices in the June quarter, median prices are still up this calendar year for both houses and units, in Melbourne and in the regions,” Mr Simpson said. 

In particular there was been strong growth in regional centres which is probably due to the first-home buyers’ concessions said Mr Simpsons.

“The first-home buyers’ concession has been a boon for regional areas. A new entrant to the property market buying a house at the regional median will pay no stamp duty, while a first home buyer of an apartment in Melbourne at the median price would pay stamp duty of nearly $25,000,” he said.

Mr Simpson said that more prospective buyers are looking towards regional Victoria which is also having an effect in Melbourne.

“Melbourne’s outer perimeter continues to grow. Small increases in the June quarter mean that the median prices for both houses and units have risen over 10.5 per cent from a year ago.

Mr Simpson said moving forward that vendors need more realistic expectations as the highs of 2017 are now over.

“Negative chatter about the future of the sector coupled with stronger lending controls by financial institutions has created some uncertainty and vendors need to be realistic with their price expectations,” Mr Simpson said.

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Regional Victoria showing up Melbourne in price performance, new data finds
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If Mark Hodge’s face looks familiar to you it could be because of his time working as a professional entertainer which saw him working with the Australian ballet, appearing on multiple seasons of Dancing with the Stars and touring in musical theatre for 17 years. What you may not know is that Mark is also heavily involved in the short-term property rental marketspace.

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Mark joins host Phil Tarrant to discuss his transition from entertainer to investor, a journey pushed forward by dance related injuries and even a hit and run which saw him needing to find alternate methods to bring in an income. Mark shares how bad long-term tenants and a gang member guided him to the short-term rental market, and how this pushed him into helping others to realise the same benefits.

Mark will also address the common concerns, discuss what his company Maisonnets specialise in and unpack how they are making the process of filling short term rentals easier for investors.

If you like this episode, show your support by rating us or leaving a review on iTunes (The Smart Property Investment Show) and by following Smart Property Investment on social media: FacebookTwitter and LinkedIn.

If you have any questions about what you heard today, any topics of interest you have in mind, or if you’d like to lend your voice to the show, email [email protected] for more insights!

RELATED AREAS OF INTEREST:

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AREAS MENTIONED:

Melbourne
Sydney
Rushcutters Bay
Maroubra
Potts Point

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From pirouettes to property investment

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