opinion
Helen Collier-Kogtevs

You can afford to invest in property

By Helen Collier-Kogtevs

If you are serious about getting your foot on the property ladder, it's time to stop making excuses.

Blogger: Helen Collier-Kogtevs, managing director, Real Wealth Australia

Do you ever feel like you work just to pay the bills?

I come across this scenario often with my clients. They generally have a comfortable level of income, but they’re unsure where all the money has gone by the end of the week.

It’s often said that good is the enemy of great; in the same vein, comfort is the enemy of growth. When you have a comfortable life it’s hard to find the motivation to strive for a better life, because you’re already doing okay.

This attitude can be a silent killer, as it holds you back from living your best life and enjoying long-term financial security and freedom. You may be “okay” now, but wouldn’t you rather be prosperous and wealthy?

If ‘living comfortably’ reflects your own situation, and you consider yourself in a position where you can’t afford to invest in property, I’d like you to ponder whether any of this sounds familiar:

  • Are your credit cards generally at their limits?
  • Do you own a nice car?
  • Do you have a 50-inch plasma television?
  • What about the latest iPhone and iPad… do you upgrade your mobile phones and computers regularly?
  • Do you exceed your internet usage every other month?
  • Do you and/or the kids get all the latest gadgets?
  • What about pay TV: are you a subscriber to Netflix or Foxtel?
  • And clothes: how much do you spend on the latest brands?
  • What about your social life: do you use credit cards to pay for your nights out and maybe even your holidays? Do you then spend the next 12 months paying off the debt?
  • Do you smoke or drink?
  • What about gifts for friends and family: are they expensive?

The above every-day life expenses are just scratching the surface – I haven’t even mentioned every day basics like mortgages and rent, electricity, insurance, groceries and fuel! Then there are ad-hoc expenses that crop up every so often, like doctor and dentist visits, vet bills, car registration and speeding and parking fines.

Now, I’m not saying that you need to slash spending across all of these expenses in order to get your budget under control and invest in property.

What I am suggesting, though, is that by completing a budget planner, you will understand your spending habits.

You will then have a very clear picture of your personal financial situation – and I’m guessing that for many of those who are reading this, you’ll find you actually can afford to invest in property, with a few small changes to your spending habits.

To be clear, I’m not advocating that you do not enjoy what life has to offer. Instead, I would prefer you prepare and regularly update your budget so that you understand your level of disposable income.

If you’re not sure where to start, don’t be shy – get in touch with an accountant, mortgage broker, investment mentor or financial planner to help you whip your finances into shape. That way, you don’t have to lose sleep at night worrying your debts and your lack of progress towards your property goals, and you can work out how much you can afford to spend on property investing sooner rather than later!

Happy investing!

About the Blogger

Helen Collier-Kogtevs

Helen Collier-Kogtevs

Helen Collier-Kogtevs is the founder of Real Wealth Australia. She is a self-made millionaire who built wealth with her property investment expertise. Over the years she has pioneered Property Mentoring Programs dedicated to helping ordinary Australians to create property portfolios using her disciplined, low risk and systematic approach. She has written several bestselling books, has been interviewed on TV, radio and published in the largest publications in Australia.

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You can afford to invest in property
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