Why this investor refused to work with a buyer's agent

By Bianca Dabu 28 May 2018 | 1 minute read

Investor Morgan Harris-Bushell has successfully invested in Wagga Wagga, Orange, Kingston, Brown Plains and Kippa-Ring at the age of 28—all without the assistance of a buyer's agent. Will he advise other young investors to use the same strategy?

Investor, buyer's agent, caution tape

In 2013, Mr Harris-Bushell started his investment journey by purchasing a $171,000-property in Wagga Wagga. This was followed by a purchase in Orange in 2014. The year after, he bought another property in KingstonKingston, QLD Kingston, ACT Kingston, TAS.

The young investor then went to Brown Plains in 2016 to buy his fourth real estate asset. In 2017, he was in Kippa-Ring for his fifth purchase.

All of these assets have grown significantly in value over time and have also seen impressive gross yields ranging from five to 14 per cent.

According to him: “I looked for properties that were below market value, properties where I can add value through renovating. Then, I can have them revalued and use that equity to go on to the next purchase.”

At the moment, the whole portfolio is valued at around $1.5 million and carries a debt close to a million.

He said: “When I started out, I assessed what my risk tolerance was and I realised that I need to go through an acquisition phase.”

“From a risk perspective, the high loan-to-value ratio doesn't really bother me too much. I've gone after properties that have high yields, and for me, that means I'm not taking any money out of my own pocket.

“My whole portfolio is averaging about 6 per cent gross. It is a positive portfolio at a gross level,” the investor highlighted.

Saying ‘no’ to agents

Considering how far out he explored to find the right properties and how well his wealth-creation journey is going, it might be hard to believe that Mr Harris-Bushell was not backed by a professional agent throughout this acquisition phase.

In fact, all of the assets that he has acquired in five different markets over the course of five years have been sourced only by himself, he said.

According to him, he did dabble in the idea of hiring an agent, so much so that he actually interviewed a few of them as he jumped into unfamiliar markets.

However, one thing always stops him from getting their services—the professional fees.

He said: “It got to the point where they'd tell me what they would do, how it suits me, and what the fee was. I just couldn't get past the fee. I thought, ‘If someone's going to give me $4,000 to $10,000 to find a property, could I find that for them?’ The answer was always yes.”

Moreover, buying properties by himself has considerably developed his skills as an investor since he’s learning from actual personal experiences.

For his succeeding purchases, the young investor still plans to back himself by continuing his self-education.

This time, he will be looking for properties with good cash flow in the markets of South Australia, Queensland or Tasmania.

At the end of the day, he said, the knowledge that he acquires for himself gives him the confidence to take control of how his own future.

According to him: “I want be able to find the properties myself. I felt it was a pretty crucial skill to have and develop, so that's how I went about it.”

“Don't get me wrong, I do think that there is value in their service. If I ever go down that path and engage an agent, I’m confident that I know what to look out for and I can look after my own interests,” Mr Harris-Bushell concluded.


Tune in to Morgan Harris-Bushell’s episode on The Smart Property Investment Show to know more about his investment process.



An agent is a real estate professional licensed to guide property buyers and sellers with their transactions.


An agent is a person authorised to act as a representative in the selling, buying, renting, or management of a property.


An agent is a person authorised to act as representative in the selling, buying, renting or management of a property.

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Why this investor refused to work with a buyer's agent
Investor, buyer's agent, caution tape
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