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100% hOPE 5 Week Challenge

Monday, March 03, 2014


We would like to invite you to join us in the 100% hOPE 5 week challenge to raise money to purchase 5 acres of land in Uganda where homes are being built for the children.

$20,000 sounds like a lot of money, but if 200 of us pledge to save $20 each week for 5 weeks, then together we will be able to raise that money. Together we can achieve this!

You can set up a weekly transfer of $20 or just make one transfer of $100 during the 5 week period. See flyer below for bank account details. All donations are tax deductible. All it takes is one small sacrifice for 5 weeks such as giving up 5 cups of coffee per week or exchanging a meal at a restaurant for a dinner at home.

You will need to register with Trishelle so that she has your email address to be able to send you your tax receipt. Simply email Trishelle at with “I’m in” in the subject field. Feel free to email her if you have any other questions as well!

This is an opportunity for you to be directly involved in changing our children’s futures, along with many generations to come.  We encourage you to invite 3 friends to join you in taking up the challenge.  .

 Thank you for joining with us in giving the children in Uganda a FUTURE and a hOPE!


Property Industry Welcomes Royal Commission

Friday, February 21, 2014

The Property Council of Australia has welcomed the federal government’s announcement last week of a Royal Commission into registered organisations in the building and construction industry.

Property Council CEO, Peter Verwer, said “Recent revelations of corruption by registered organisations in the building and construction industry highlight the need for a Royal Commission to shine the light on illegal practices on construction sites.”

The Property Council has long supported action to ensure the rules of civil society apply on construction sites, especially a strong cop on the beat” Verwer said.

“But clearly there are structural problems that allow criminal behaviour in the first place.

“A Royal Commission will delve into the public policy settings and industry cultures that foster behaviours which fall short of community expectations.”

“Together with the proposed ABCC, the commission is an opportunity to tackle disruptive criminal activity on construction sites, boost productivity and improve safety.

“As with the Cole Royal Commission, the Property Council will work with the Government to ensure we get the right structures and measures to restore confidence in the industry.

“However, restoring the ABCC remains the immediate priority and we encourage all parties to support the legislation before the Parliament” Verwer concluded.


by: Property Week

Which Capital City will do their best this year?

Monday, February 03, 2014

By Jessie Richardson
Friday, 17 January 2014

With 2013 well and truly behind us, Property Observer is looking forward to the year ahead. We’ve asked four market experts to weigh in on where we’ll see the best capital growth this year.

Which capital city will perform the best in 2014?

Charles Tarbey - chairman of Century 21 Australia


Brisbane. During the last year, other capital cities moved up in price far more than Brisbane did. And if I look at the three most vibrant ones – Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, the last two had the strongest growth. Three years ago, Brisbane and Sydney had very similar prices. But in the last 12 months, Sydney’s median prices have jumped almost 14%. The median price in Sydney is now close to $750,000, while it’s around $445,000 in Brisbane.

Sydney investors used to sell their properties in Sydney to downsize and buy in Brisbane, and still have a quarter of a million left over. That stopped three years ago, but now it’s back on the table.

If you look at discretionary spending, the majority of people who buy in the Sunshine Coast are from Melbourne. And as capital gains in Melbourne have increased, there’s a very big discrepancy in the prices of those sorts of properties in Melbourne and those currently available on the Sunshine Coast.

Brisbane and the surrounding areas have stayed flat in recent times, in part due to the floods, along with other factors. Astute investors will be picking up on those areas.

Victor Kumar - Director and Principal of Right Property Group


Growth in any area generally follows a period of higher yields (annual rent expressed as a percentage of purchase price), if all other fundamentals remain the same. Given that money is fairly cheap, where you can get sub 5% interest rates on loans, the higher yielding suburbs, and indeed states, will and have seen a buying frenzy.

The result of this is that there is excessive heat in the market. Buyers, and indeed first time investors and home owners, are starting to pay over the top in a bid to get into the market, in the hope of not missing out on a good growth spurt.

Adding to that volatility, there are a lot of investors jumping into the market with their super funds, taking a longer term view on their purchases and who are therefore not fazed about paying a few thousand dollars extra to be ahead of the competition. There certainly will be a substantial increase in pricing in most metropolitan areas.

Given that Sydney traditionally has been yielding 6.5% plus properties in areas that show good investment fundamentals, the market is in an absolute frenzy with the lower interest rates, and the added bite of new year’s resolutions and so forth, it is generally a market I would not buy in unless there are notable price points between new and old. Certainly, I would be concentrating more in the mortgage belt and coastal areas, so that when the heat does go out of the market at some point in time, there isn’t such a major correction.

Brisbane is absolutely the other market to watch. Rising prices in Sydney are leading to reducing yields, and Brisbane’s lower priced (in comparison to Sydney’s) properties will be giving the high yields most seasoned investors are accustomed to. There will be a natural influx of out of state investors there, which will and has led to a strong market recovery.

Generally if you are buying here, this year you will see good growth, and yields will decrease. Naturally my preference is on established properties in the mortgage belt area here outside of the flood zones.

Melbourne, in the suburbs where the fundamentals do work, is never going to be a high yielding proposition, yet the growth is likely to be pretty good, given the infrastructure changes and the influx again of self-managed super funds and out of state investors seeking new markets. It’s likely to show good strong growth.

Perth, Adelaide and the other main cities in the country are, in my opinion, likely to lag behind these three areas (Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne) in terms of growth in 2014.

The point to note in all of this is that whilst the market in each state is being driven by factors such as media attention, lower interest rates, more buyers in the market and good infrastructure, even though a state is highlighted for growth or decline, there will still be pockets within these states which will be bucking the trend. Therefore due diligence is required before jumping into a state or suburb just because everyone else seems to be investing there.

Tim Lawless - Head of Research, RP Data


Brisbane is arguably the best example of a city showing strong fundamentals. Gross rental yields are amongst the highest of any capital city (4.6 per cent for houses and 5.6 per cent for units), housing prices are much lower than Sydney and Melbourne (the median house price in Brisbane is 36% lower than Sydney’s and 24% lower than Melbourne’s). Population growth is strong and there hasn’t been a substantial uplift in new dwelling supply, indicating a persistent undersupply of housing. Rental vacancies are around the 2% mark according to the REIA which is likely to drive rents higher as well.

Perth’s housing market has likely passed peak growth conditions. We are seeing rental rates now tapering as Perth vacancy rates rise, transaction numbers are trailing off and yields are slightly below average. We are also seeing the rate of overseas and interstate migration into Western Australia slowdown, which is likely in response to a wind down in the major infrastructure project pipeline that is evident across many of the resource intensive regions of the state.

It is logical to expect those markets that have been very ‘hot’ in terms of capital growth will naturally start to cool over the coming year, in fact we may already be seeing early signs that peak capital gains have passed in Sydney and Melbourne.

The key challenge for those investing in the housing market over the coming year will be to balance rental income with expectations for capital gain. In our view, investors should be approaching the housing market with a balanced strategy: seeking out homes that will provide opportunities for long term capital gains whilst also returning a healthy rental yield. With typical yields across Sydney and Melbourne now below 4 per cent for houses and slightly higher for units, finding balanced investment opportunities that offer both rental income and prospects for capital gain are becoming more difficult.

Catherine Cashmore - Market analyst


There is nothing to indicate any slow down in the market's overall direction in 2014 - but I do think it will come in 2015.

Canberra and Adelaide are likely to remain soft however investors are the main players in this cycle and Sydney (gains of which could be in excess of 10%,) followed by Melbourne, Perth and Brisbane (+ 5-8%) are all set to benefit.

There are potential headwinds for the economy - as most are aware, job security is a factor for many buyers - unemployment is trending upwards and the Government is accentuating the problem with its unhealthy obsession to restore a surplus.

To offset this, money is flowing into the local established markets via strong immigration from China and India, for example, with other factors such as an increasing amount of wealth in self-managed super funds, which is a strengthening trend.

Interest rates are likely to remain low - which will assist mortgage holders and investors and for those entering the market, the concentration is most likely focused on their monthly payment rather than total upfront cost. However it's that upfront cost and the shortage of affordable supply, which will continue to deter first time buyers.

No doubt, the winners in this market have been - and will continue to be - investors and second time buyers - however, a growing and very vocal minority of low income earners and first time buyers, are starting to question the legacy they have been left with.

It won't change the current cycle, or stop the speculation - but perhaps it will inspire a much needed debate on the long term, feasible, and sustainable solutions.

Queensland Property Industry is the most Confident

Tuesday, January 21, 2014
  1. While positive sentiment improved across Australia to the highest level since the Property Council/ANZ Property Industry Confidence Survey began in 2011, Queensland was the knock-out.

The results revealed a 10 point spike in Queensland's confidence for the March Quarter, up to 152 on the index, the highest in the country.

A score of 100 is considered neutral.

The state also had the highest expectation of economic growth in the nation over the coming year.

"We have seen a dramatic shift in confidence among Queensland's property industry over the past two surveys, driven primarily by the ongoing recovery of the residential market," Property Council executive director Kathy MacDermott said in a statement.

"The previous quarter's survey results exhibited first signs of a residential revival.

"During the past three months, industry's house price growth expectations have grown to the highest levels in the country, and to historic levels for Queensland."

Queensland's retail capital growth expectations have also been building over time and now sit at the most positive levels seen in Queensland.

The retail sector has experienced 15-point growth over six months and is now second only to the Northern Territory.

Premier Campbell Newman said the results show confidence in the reform programs being undertaken by his government, including restoring the principal place of residence stamp duty concession, and a $15,000 grant for new homes.

"We've seen a 13 per cent increase in housing finance commitments in the year to November and a 4.9 per cent increase in November in trend dwelling approvals," Mr Newman said in a statement.

The survey polled approximately 2600 property and construction industry professionals from across the country in December 2013.


By: 16th January 2014

The Message for 2014: Choose your Location Very Carefully

Thursday, January 09, 2014

By Terry Ryder
Wednesday, 20 November 2013


The experience of 2013 has taught investors, once again, how careful they need to be in their location choices.

When markets are rising, as some have this year, investors can be deceived into believing that any purchase will give them growth.

That's especially so when some media would have us believe that "the Australian property market" is white hot. The reality is that only a very narrow strip of real estate Australia has conditions remotely resembling a boom.

Most cities and regional areas have recorded moderate growth this year and others have struggled, with a few over-supplied markets in sharp decline.

The last time a property boom swept the nation, encompassing almost everywhere, was ten years ago.

These days, buyers have to be selective. A poor locational choice can result in an under-performing property surrounded by rising markets.

The latest House Price Indexes from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, describing annual growth to September, have Sydney as the only city with a double-digit increase. Melbourne and Darwin (6-7%) have had moderate growth, Brisbane has grown just 4% and Canberra, Hobart and Adelaide have stagnated.

In regional Australia, selected cities and towns have done very well this year, including a few where annual growth has topped 20% - among them Miles and Cloncurry in Queensland and Narrabri in New South Wales.

Some have had sharp corrections, due to local conditions. Notable examples are Queensland coal mining towns like Moranbah and Blackwater, and the iron ore town of Newman in Western Australia.

Moranbah demonstrates the volatility of pure mining towns: once the number one location in the nation for capital growth, it has recorded a 37% decrease in its median house price in the past 12 months, according to Australian Property Monitors figures.

Newman, which saw its median top $800,000, has recorded a median below $500,000 with its most recent sales. No doubt it will rise again when the massive Roy Hill mine cranks up construction. I couldn't sleep if I owned property in places like this.

This week I was in Central Queensland, which provides a case study in the variations that can exist across quite short distances. Gladstone, a city with high real estate demand but way too much supply, has recorded a marked decrease in prices and rents. The median house price for the suburb of Clinton is down 10% and South Gladstone has dropped 8%.

In Mackay, where new supply has coincided with a drop in demand thanks to a downsizing coal industry, the previous strong growth has halted.

Meanwhile, in unheralded Rockhampton, sales volumes have increased and prices are following. The city has more economic diversity than Gladstone and Mackay, with less reliance in resources. It's also considerably cheaper.

The message for 2014 is to choose locations carefully. These is no national property boom and while I expect Brisbane to rise and Perth to continue to be strong, most cities will deliver only moderate growth and some, like Canberra, will struggle.

Home Values are Increasing

Monday, December 09, 2013


Capital city home values are increasing at their fastest pace in three years, according to the latest RP Data quarterly review of the residential property market.  

The report found that, over the three months to October, home values across the combined capital cities rose by 3.4%, and that combined capital city home values have been trending higher since they reached a low in May last year. They have increased by 10.2% since then.  

Home values across all capital cities have risen by 7.9% over the past year, and, over the 12 months to October, house and unit values have risen by 8.2% and 5.9% respectively.  

Over the past three months, both house and unit values have increased by 3.4%.  



Annual change in dwelling values – year ending Oct ‘13


By Stephen Taylor
Wednesday, 04 December 2013


Is now a Good Time to Buy?

Wednesday, November 13, 2013



According to a recent RP Data survey, 74% believe that now is a good time to buy a property. And Brisbane and Regional Queensland are deemed to be in the Top 4 locations of where to invest.

Conversely, 74% of Sydney-based respondents though that, with the over-heating in the market, now is a good time to be selling Sydney property.

Australia's Top 4 Capital Cities are outperforming our regional areas for capital growth - ANZ Bank

The ANZ Bank recently released findings confirming capital city markets are outperforming regional areas. It said that Australia's non-capital city house price growth has underperformed that of the capital cities since the beginning of 2013.

Great News for QLD Resource Cities

Friday, November 08, 2013

Business confidence in the boom QLD resource cities of Gladstone, Mackay and Emerald has taken a battering over the last 12 to 8 months. But now that the election is behind us and the new Liberal govt is slashing red tape confidence has returned to the regions.

The massive GVK-Hancock coal mine to be built in central QLD has just been given the green light and is staggering in scale. Its very likely for the India funded Adani project to also get approval by early next year. Its estimated that between these 2 unprecedented projects around 25,000 new jobs with be created and should see the rental markets in the regions above go well beyond their former peaks.

Massive central QLD coal mine gets the green light;

Boulder Steel back on;

Over $89 Billion in projects still to commence;

Business confidence bounces back in central QLD;

All investors in  these regions who have seen their rental returns diminish can be confident that Gladstone, Mackay, Emerald and many other cities and towns in Central QLD have a very bright future.

Queensland in the Spotlight

Monday, November 04, 2013

Queensland was in the spot light again last week.

 There is some great news covering the QLD investment scene that is valuable for residential investors.

  • Removal of the mining tax has begun
  • The commsec State of the States report found QLD leading in business investment with spending in the June quarter 37% above the decade average
  • 1400 exploration permits were granted in the last week - the red tape is removed so mining companies can get on with business.

Please see these 3 articles for more information:

  1. Queensland "The Big Mover"
  2. Government Releases Draft Legistlation Repealing the Mining Tax
  3. QLD Grants 1400 Exploration Permits in a Week

State of the States Reports talks up Queensland's Economy

Monday, November 04, 2013

By 'The Observer'

THE latest CommSec State of the States Report shows Qld is the best place in Australia to invest, employ and grow business, according to the State Government. 

Treasurer Tim Nicholls said the report, released today, noted improvements in business investment, unemployment, housing finance and building starts as positive signs for Queensland.

"Queensland now leads the nation in business investment, with spending in the June quarter 37 per cent above the decade average," Mr Nicholls said.

Mr Nicholls said Queensland was ranked the second-best performing state on four of the eight economic indicators used in the CommSec report.

"Economic growth is 19.3 per cent higher than the decade average, retail spending is up 15.3 per cent and construction activity is 45 per cent higher than it was 10 years ago," he said.

"Importantly, Queensland continues to experience population growth above the national average.

"This is solid news, as population growth bolsters the labour force and creates greater demand across all sectors, especially retail and housing."

Mr Nicholls said the State of the States Report was the latest in a string of positive economic releases for Queensland.

"The Deloitte Business Outlook, also released today, notes that Queensland continues to out-perform the national economy," he said.

"Preliminary results from the State Accounts show Queensland's economy growing by four per cent in 2012-13, compared to an average of 2.6 per cent across the other states.

"By 2014-15 Queensland will have the fastest growing economy of any Australian state.

"With these positive signs emerging there's never been a better time for businesses to invest, employ and grow in Queensland."


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