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Is investing in property through your SMSF right for you?

By eSuperfund

Promoted by esuperfund

Australia’s love affair with investing in property has been a key driver of personal wealth. 

Using an SMSF to purchase an investment property has become increasingly popular with people wanting to increase wealth and diversify their investment portfolio.

However, investing in property can be risky. While property values can rise quickly, as we have seen across many Australian property sectors in the last decade or so, they can also fall quickly. Consequently, investing in property through your SMSF may be more beneficial for people with long-term investment goals.

As with any investment option, there are advantages and disadvantages, as well as certain risks, that must be considered before buying an investment property through your SMSF.

 

Enjoy tax concessions and investment income

Put simply, the benefits of investing in property through your SMSF come predominantly from tax concessions. The most obvious is the 15% tax rate on superannuation investments compared to generally higher personal tax rates.

Investing in property also has the added benefit of providing potential sources of revenue to drive growth in your retirement savings. Generating income from your SMSF-purchased property can be used to fund other investment purchases, as well as utilising tax breaks if the property is negatively geared. Rental income paid to your SMSF is also only taxed at 15%, which can be reduced to 0% in certain circumstances.

Despite being subject to relatively high purchase/sales taxes such as stamp duty and capital gains tax, properties held long-term can yield higher returns not generally seen with other investments.

While there are clear benefits to SMSF property investment, there are things you need to know and certain regulations you must adhere to.

 

Understand the restrictions on how you use your property

As with other superannuation investments, SMSF properties can’t be used to purchase or pay off your home or holiday home – they must be used to save for your retirement. SMSF-purchased properties also have exclusions on trustees of the SMSF or their relatives from occupying the property. Your SMSF also cannot purchase a property that you, a friend or relative already owns.

Commercial properties, however, can generally be purchased and occupied by an SMSF trustee or family member, provided rent is paid at the market rate.

 

Ensure you have diverse assets first

Before investing in a SMSF-purchased property, it’s important to make sure you have a diverse range of assets in your superfund. No matter what you’re investing in, it’s inadvisable to pour your entire SMSF into the one investment. Ensuring diversified investments will prevent your investment strategy being considered too risky and will shield you from losses or market volatility.

 

Prepare for the complexity of SMSF loans

SMSFs can only use a limited recourse loan to purchase an investment property. This means that if the fund defaults on the loan, the fund’s other assets aren’t at risk. However, it’s harder to get a loan to buy a property through your SMSF and most lenders will not lend more than 70-80% of the purchase price.

When interest rates are low, using your SMSF to purchase an investment property can outweigh your borrowing costs.

Depending on your circumstances, an SMSF-purchased investment property can be a great way to grow your wealth and build a better retirement, but it’s not right for everyone.

 

For more information about SMSFs, download our free SMSF Guide to investing in Property eBook or Information Package today. If you're interested in investing in property through an SMSF, ESUPERFUND helps make it easy, with a fast, streamlined process. And if you act now, ESUPERFUND is offering a Special Free Offer! Click here for details.

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  ["title"]=>
  string(51) "Boost for investors as app sets up off-site bidding"
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  string(55) "boost-for-investors-as-new-app-sets-up-off-site-bidding"
  ["introtext"]=>
  string(144) "

Property investors are now able to identify and bid on auctions remotely using a new live-streaming functionality launched by Gavl.

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Called “Request an Auction”, the new functionality enables users to watch and bid on any Sydney or Melbourne auction remotely.

Through Gavl, prospective buyers are now able to register to bid on their preferred auction. The platform will obtain permission from the listing agent and confirm within 48 hours.

Vendors can also request to have their auctions broadcast to a larger buyer audience.

Co-founder Joel Smith said that auctions streamed on Gavl attract 47 per cent more viewers than traditional ones.

He said that Request an Auction will be valuable for remote buyers.

“Buyers are able to have Gavl attend any auction they nominate, so they will never have to miss out on an opportunity due to logistical complications in physically attending the auction.

“Vendors, too, have the opportunity to directly book an auction with us, so they can open up their event to buyers all around the world. With more potential buyers, they’re giving their property the chance to receive more bids and maximise their sales result.”

Mr Smith said that prior to the Request an Auction app, buyers were limited to what they could achieve through the Gavl technology.

Gavl is a live-streaming and bidding platform for real estate auctions.

Mr Smith said that it has streamed more than 6,000 auctions, which have achieved 3.5 million views from 50 countries.

Gavl’s Request an Auction function is currently being offered in Melbourne and Sydney only.

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Boost for investors as app sets up off-site bidding
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  ["title"]=>
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Having to split her time between Hong Kong and her original base of Sydney has not slowed Julia Tita’s goal of building a high-performance Australian property portfolio. Instead the resulting alterations to her strategy have positively impacted her investing success.

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Having recently purchased her 6th property, Julia joins host Tim Neary to discuss her journey, share her ups and downs over the years, and reveal her thoughts on why some properties are better than others.

Julia also explains why she no longer makes a move without the help of a buyer’s agent, why working with a strong team of specialists is extremely important and discloses her long-term property ambitions.

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!

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AREAS MENTIONED:

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Bondi

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How a move to Hong Kong impacted Julia’s Australian property goals
object(stdClass)#1197 (52) {
  ["id"]=>
  string(5) "18159"
  ["title"]=>
  string(88) "‘Common’ referrer practice of being paid on both sides of the fence coming to an end"
  ["alias"]=>
  string(82) "common-referrer-practice-of-being-paid-on-both-sides-of-the-fence-coming-to-an-end"
  ["introtext"]=>
  string(246) "

The practice of property investment firms sharing undisclosed kickbacks among the supply chain involved in development sales will be outlawed in NSW on 1 July this year under the Real Estate Reform being handed down by regulators in NSW.

" ["fulltext"]=> string(2238) "

Property commentator and valuer, Suburbanite’s Anna Porter, said the reform will address conflicts of interest.

She said they arise when a mortgage broker, accountant or financial planner receives part of the commission from the property firm, who receive their fees from the developer or seller.

“This puts the broker into a position by which they are being paid on both sides of the fence,” she said.

“Until now this has been a grey area and there was nothing stopping this practice.” 

Ms Porter said this has been a common practice in the industry.

"Some well-known mortgage broking firms openly admit to receiving $5,000–$10,000 per referral in their pocket.”

She also said this process has been going on for decades.

"Property investment firms commonly pass some of their commission on to the mortgage broker, accountant or financial planner as a reward to them for passing on the referral. This means that many brokers or financial service providers are making significant amounts of money just to refer on to a property firm, often totalling hundreds of thousands of dollars a year," Anna Porter said.

Ms Porter said the Property, Stock and Business Agents Amendment (Property Industry Reform) Bill 2017 will be in force from July this year, and will prohibit this practice unless the broker or referring partner also holds a real estate industry license.

"Under the new laws, if the broker takes a referral fee from the property firm, they will have to be a licensed real estate agent and also hold a corporation’s license,” she said. 

“Subsequently, every transaction that they receive a referral fee from, they will be putting their license up against the transaction and taking full liability for the conduct, practices and outcome of that transaction, even if they have little to do with the transaction; they are a party to it financially and therefore take as much risk as everyone else in the transaction.”

Mr Porter said where a referrer holds a real estate license, and receives a part of the sale commission, they may find themselves in breach of the ethical requirements under the act.

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‘Common’ referrer practice of being paid on both sides of the fence coming to an end

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