Finance advice

How ‘incompatible’ mortgage brokers almost derailed these property investors’ journey

By Bianca Dabu
Mortgage

Like many property investors, husband-and-wife Brendon and Courtney realised the importance of a reliable financial team in the pursuit of success in the business of creating wealth through property during the first few years of building their portfolio.

One of the first property professionals they sought was a mortgage broker, and over time, they found a duo by reaching out to people who are also into property investment. Little did they know that finding the right people to work with is more complex than merely looking at their credentials.

“We weren't happy with that broker so we've changed,” Brendon shared.

According to him, the husband-and-wife team that they got acted as their mortgage broker and financial planner without a deep understanding of their goals, capabilities, and limitations as property investors. The wife, who is the financial planner, told the couple to “slow down” because they’re young and they already have two properties—they could be spending their time and money to pay off their home loan.

Brendon said: “That sent [Courtney] into a spin.”

“I was gobsmacked,” Courtney reiterated.

Aside from suggesting that they should slow down, the duo also recommended cross-collateralizing.

According to Brendon: “I said ... ‘What happens when we go to sell our owner-occupied or move on and these are all 100 per cent leveraged against our owner-occupied?’ And she said ... ‘That's alright. Just wait until they've gone up 20 per cent in value, then you can just untie it.’”

Having only started their property investment journey, Brendon and Courtney decided to trust the property professionals they are working with—a decision that almost totally affected their portfolio.

Courtney said: “I knew I really should've fought harder. I remember sitting at our table saying ... ‘We would like them not tied’ … [but] she really pushed us in that direction.”

“I really should've said ... ‘Thank you but no thank you. We'll find someone else,’ but I think [I] was so [enthusiastic] ... that I wanted that next property and, therefore, we moved forward,” she added.

Lesson learned

Smart Property Investment’s Phil Tarrant believes that Brendon and Courtney are among the many budding property investors whose decision-making become clouded by their “over-enthusiasm” about wealth-creation.

According to Phil: “It's easy to rationalise something if you really want to rationalise something … You [can] go, ‘It's okay because of this reason and I'll still [get] the same output.’ ”

“It's nice that you ... look back on that and go, ‘You know, maybe I didn't do that right ...’ Hopefully, you won't do it again,” he added.

Brendon and Courtney soon found a new mortgage broker, who has already helped them get pre-approval for their next property purchase. They are also looking into working with a buyer’s agent to assist them in researching about the best suburbs to buy properties in.

After their unfortunate experience with their first mortgage broker and financial planner, the couple now strives to be part of a productive teamwork instead of entrusting the big decisions to the property professionals.

According to Brendon: “It's a bit of a team effort, I guess. Like, the mortgage broker, the buyer's agent, the financial planner, and the accountant, they all work together closely, so, I foresee that it would be a matter of sitting down with the financial planner and the buyer's agent and seeing what property we need next to compliment the others [that we already have].”

“We're at a point now [where] not any old property will do … I would definitely be grilling them a lot more than I had in the past,” Courtney added.

‘Keep challenging yourself’

Despite having a negative experience with property professionals, Brendon and Courtney recognise the value of a good financial team in their property investment journey.

However, as much as they need their guidance and advice, they also need to continue educating themselves to be able to challenge these professionals and make sure that they are actually steering them towards success. After all, an expert’s advice does not always equate to the best advice which is specific to your portfolio’s needs.

Courtney said: “I am actually scared of that, to be giving our money to someone, saying, ‘Do what you want with it’ because they're not going to work as hard for you as you would work for you if you ask my opinion … I'm a lot more on our side than I was previously—I think we’re a little bit too trusting to start with.”

At the end of the day, having a good relationship with property professionals is about striking a balance between trust and discernment.

According to Phil, take time to listen to your financial team’s advice, have a “legitimate look” at their recommendations, and communicate—be open about any thoughts or misgivings that you might have so you and your team can arrive at the best possible decision together.

“I always like to keep learning and challenging myself and we've obviously got a passion for property, so we'll probably be those type of annoying hands-on people,” Brendon concluded.

 

Tune in to Brendon and Courtney’s episode on The Smart Property Investment Show to know more about how they made the transition from being property buyers to being property investors, as well as what they have learned through the properties they bought and how it has impacted each purchase.

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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
Mortgage Trusts, an alternative first step for property investors
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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  string(381) "

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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