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Investment tip: Maintaining good serviceability while self-employed

By Bianca Dabu 30 December 2019 | 1 minute read

The tightening of the credit environment has presented challenges for investors looking to finance the growth of their portfolio. How can self-employed investors thrive in the current market?

Maintaining good serviceability while self employed

Investor Jacqui Zielinski, owner of a 10-property portfolio worth around $3 million, has decided to transition from being a bank employee to running her own digital agency.

Naturally, her career choice has impacted her finances and, thus, her serviceability.

“I kind of expected it because I know where the banks stand when it comes to self-employed and how you need to be there for at least a couple of years,” she said.

Instead of becoming frantic about the changes in her financial situation, Ms Zielinski allowed herself to take the time to let her portfolio sit for a while, confident that the cash flow and capital growth generated will keep her portfolio afloat.

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With good assets, she was able to simply “sit back and watch them grow.”

“There’s been a year or so that we didn’t do anything and that was our highest growth year because we’d bought at the right time, the right properties,” she said.

Talking about money

Apart from research and education, Ms Zielinski credited her success in balancing self-employment and property investment to the property professionals who helped her along the way, particularly her trusted accountant.

Often, self-employed investors keep their finances afloat by maximising their tax benefits – as in, “mixing” their business and their personal life.

“If you look to show losses in your business by trying to gain tax effectiveness, you can struggle to secure financing as a result of it. You need to show a profit in order for a bank to be comfortable to lend you money,” she said.

As complicated as it seems, Ms Zielinski found herself thriving with the help of her accountant.

According to her, communication is key to their effective relationship as it is vital that her accountant understands her plans and goals, as well as her capabilities and limitations as an investor, in order to guide her towards the right direction.

Ms Zielinkski shared: “The accountant’s trying to do the right thing in the sense of saving tax… You just need to be showing your income if you want to get finance approved.”

“There’s so many things I could potentially claim on it tax-wise, but I’m going to have that conversation with my accountant and say, ‘This is what the overall plan is.”

Her advice to fellow investors: Don’t be afraid to talk about money with professionals you trust.

“Be happy and comfortable talking about money. A lot of people get scared of talking about money and it really holds them back,” she said.

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Investment tip: Maintaining good serviceability while self-employed
Maintaining good serviceability while self employed
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