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Catherine's Chat

Wholistic Financial Solutions provides information and updates regarding the property investment industry. Learn more from Catherine's chat here.

Positive Thinking in a harsh reality

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

It can be really hard to maintain ‘positive thinking’ and belief in ‘whatever is meant to be’ when bad things keep happening. As you probably know my middle Son broke his face in four places 6 weeks ago requiring major surgery. Now my oldest Son made the Raiders squad only to find out he has damaged 4 discs in his lower back an may not be able to play.  This week we find out that a friends beautiful Alaskan Malamute best friends were shot dead by a famer in an act of senseless cruelty and yesterday I find out a good friend is having surgery due to self-harm she caused herself.  That’s just my small circle in turmoil.  Let alone what’s happening out there in the rest of the world.

So for those of you that need a reminder of how to apply ‘The Secret’ repeat after me:

                I promise myself

                To be so strong that nothing can disturb my peace of mind.

                To talk health, happiness, and prosperity to every person I meet.

                To make all my friends feel that there is something worthwhile in them.

                To look at the sunny side of everything and make my optimism come true.

                To think only of the best, to work for only the best, and to expect only the best.

                To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as I am about my own.

                To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to greater achievements of the future.

To wear a cheerful expression at all times and give a smile to every living creature I meet.

To give so much time to improving myself that I have no time to criticize others.

To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.

To think well of myself and to proclaim this fact to the world not in loud words, but in great deeds.

To live in faith that the whole world is on my side, so long as I am true to the best that is in me.

(Christian D Larson)

The Realistic Money Mindset

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

By now I am sure most of you have heard about the power of ‘The Secret’.  According to Dr Joe Vitale ‘You can have, do, or be anything you want’.  According to the contributors to the best-selling book and movie ‘The Secret’ we can all have as much wealth as we want....(click here to read more)


we just need to ‘attract’ it into our lives by believing that we can. Many spiritual advisors, authors, songwriters, etc have picked up on this theme and the literature is abound as to how to make the ‘Law of Attraction’ work for you.  It is said that you just have to visualise your dream, over and over, and most of all you have to ‘believe’ in your dream.  They also say that if you do visualise your dream over and over again and it doesn’t come true then it is just because you didn’t really ‘believe’ it would happen.  Believe harder and it will all be Ok. 

Is this really true or is it just new age mumbo jumbo.  Can I ask you all – have you applied the power of the ‘secret’?  Did it work for you?  If not, why do you think it didn’t work?

Property Investment in Brisbane Real Estate is better than Shares

Monday, June 16, 2014


Real estate and shares are often considered the two most popular investment options.

Both are long term investments.

The most obvious difference between the two is the amount that can be the amount invested - an investor in the share market can start small by buying shares worth a few thousand dollars whereas real estate investments generally involve a commitment of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Of course, the fundamental objective of an investor should be to find an investment which generates maximum returns.

A small stock holding will not lead to an early and easy retirement unless that company enjoys an absurdly spectacular escalation in its share price. This rarely occurs. It can happen with mine shares when an unknown company strikes oil or gold.  Betting your future on finding such a company, at the right time, is simple gambling and not a sound investment strategy.

The stock market can be extremely volatile, and driven by sentiment rather than rational financial thinking.   In terms of today's share market, an investor needs to be financially well-educated and prepared to monitor their investment portfolio constantly or pay the often considerable price for professional management.

At times, there is only a very small window of opportunity in which to make the right decision about a share investment.

By comparison, real estate investment delivers the comfortable expectation for a well-chosen property of significant capital growth over time, combined with other attractive benefits which include:

  •     consistent rental income
  •     lower risk
  •     tax advantages
  •     the security of "bricks and mortar" and
  •     the capacity to manage and control your own investment   

The aspect of control is a very important consideration -- shareholders who supposedly "own" the company have no idea of what is really going on with the management of their investment and even if they did, they have no control. Property is a much more tangible option, and as the owner, you can see exactly what condition your investment is in.

But perhaps the best way to compare the two is ‘by the numbers’.

Let’s say you have $500,000 to invest in either Property or Shares.


The figures above speak for themselves, shares provide a superior net wealth increase BUT what happens when you take tax benefits into account?




When you take into account the fact that you can ‘borrow more’ or use more ‘leverage’ to invest in porperty the numbers change.

Investing in Property is a Great Tangible way to take Control of your Financial Security

Monday, May 05, 2014


When you invest in shares your money buys small piece of a company, whose board members you probably don’t know, who can use that money to make mistakes and you have no ability to control the board.

Investing in property provides far more security for investors. For one thing, your investment is ‘tangible’ you can touch it, feel it, paint it and tend to it. The fact that your investment is actual ‘bricks and mortar’ makes many people feel much safer.

Because property is tangible it is also able to be insured thus allowing investors to protect their financial security. You can insure property from fire, floods, tenant damage, rental arrears and accidental damage. Unlike stocks, property is unlikely to just disappear and if it does (such as through fire) it can be replaced using your insurance money.

Unlike investing in shares, a property investment is controlled by the investor.

The investor decides how much they pay for the property, the investor decides the rent they will charge tenants, the investor selects the tenants,  the investor decides if renovations will be made and when and how much to sell the property for.

Investing in property is a great tangible way to take control of your financial security.

Australia has Record Growth Population Forecasts

Monday, April 07, 2014


At the same time that building starts were dropping Australia’s population was growing at the fastest rate in 200 yrs*. In fact, our population is predicted to grow by 350,000 people per annum*.

(* Australian Bureau of Statistics)

Australia is predicted to grow at a rate of 65% well above the global average, a survey by the Washington based private research body, the Population Reference Bureau. 

This puts Australia’s growth rate at second only to India.  

Why is this?

1)      Migration:

I am no economic expert but many I have talked to have commented that the GFC has rapidly escalated the number of people wanting to migrate to Australia.  The old adage of Australia being the ‘lucky country’ has become a ‘world-wide’ slogan.  Australia was one of the only countries to escape a recessions.  Actually, oops I think Prime Minister Rudd announced a recession for only a few days.  During the GFC that crippled many countries, Australia continued to grow at a rapid rate.  In addition, a factor that strikes at the heart of many Australians is that Australia is coined to become ‘the resource hub’ of the new world.  Australia’s natural resources are in ample supply and whether we like it or not, we are a target for a continued resource boom. 

The final verse of Australia’s Anthem makes it clear that migration is a fundamental part of Australia’s mindset.

For those who’ve come across the seas
We’ve boundless plains to share;
With courage let us all combine
To Advance Australia Fair.

(Advance Australia Fair)

2)      Increasing birth rate:


Australia’s birth rate is on the increase for the first time since the post-war migration baby boom saw it explode in the 50’ and 60’s. 

According to (Reuters – Aug 6, 2010 (Canberra)) - Australia's birth rate has hit a 25-year high, and government has urged "have one for mum, one for dad, and one for the country".

And further increases in the birth rate could worsen the problems of an ageing population, driving new mothers out of the workforce and reducing the tax base, the nation's productivity watchdog said.

"Much of the recent increase in the fertility rate is likely to reflect the fact that over the last few decades, younger women postponed childbearing and many are now having those postponed babies," Productivity Commission author Ralph Lattimore said.

Australia's 21 million population was boosted by 285,000 births in 2007, the highest level in 25 years, and up from 261,400 births in 2005.

The population is expected to hit 31.6 million by 2050, driven to a small extent by the higher birthrate and almost 10 million new immigrants.

3)      Increasing health and longevity

Australia is well known for its healthy and active lifestyle, clean living and fresh, open air spaces.  Coupled with our reasonably good health system and we have Australian’s living longer. 

According to

The Life expectancy at birth has been steadily increasing.













2056 Low



2056 High




The above facts combined are seeing our population rate continuing to escalate. Whether it’s a good thing, or a bad thing, it just is.  The good news is that it provides a fundamental support system for continuing house price rises.

Do you want to know more? Click here to watch five free webinars on - ‘Proven, Must Know, Property Investment Advice’

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."


Chinese Investors Flocking to Australia

Monday, October 28, 2013

Chinese buyers are showing strong interest in the Gold Coast property market and are willing to pay a premium, adding pressure to an increasingly heated local market.

Gold Coast real estate agents report the number of sales has doubled in recent months with properties fetching tens of thousands of dollars more than the expected price.

Asian investors are spearheading the interest with many being bought by Chinese investors, sometimes sight unseen. When Chinese buyers see what they want, they are willing to pay a premium.

One agency has sold more than $30 million worth of property this month, including nine homes in just three days. One Currumbin property sold for 26% above reserve last month while Chinese buyers snapped up 50 properties.

It's the strongest month the Gold Coast has ever seen - it is up about 50% on previous months. About 15% buyers of buyers at Gold Coast  are currently Asian. And the Gold Coast is within the Top 3 areas of interest in Australia.

Gold Coast sales to Chinese this year are up by about 50% this year and it keeps gaining momentum. The Chinese do their research and when they can see the capital growth prospects, they buy.

Another agency has said that enquiries from South-East Asians had tripled in the past six months, with Chinese investors showing strong interest in off-the-plan developments.

According to the AFR, Chinese property listing website AC property is showing that the most searched for Australian cities for Chinese buyers are Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Gold Coast, in that order.


By Catherine Smith

The Future Remains Bright for Mackay, Gladstone and Townsville

Friday, September 13, 2013

There are currently many investors who purchased in regional areas of QLD and have been disappointed by having to accept lower than anticipated rental returns. Negative media about the end of the resources boom have also left these investors thinking that they have made a bad investment choice. However now is not the time to panic.

When you dig deeper into what is actually happening in these regions and look at the longer term the future prospects for cities like Gladstone, Mackay, Emerald, Rockhampton and Townsville remain incredibly strong. We may have passed the peak of the investment stage but we are yet to begin receiving the billions of dollars of income once exporting begins. And we still have some massive projects due to commence that will employ thousands of workers.

Please see the following link to an article from Terry Ryder suggesting that bright days are ahead;

The short term over supply of rental properties in Gladstone and Mackay should be absorbed by early next year. It may take awhile for rents to get back to their peak levels but the potential for above average capital growth remains very strong. The Gladstone metropolitan area is fast running out of land that can be developed at an affordable price. Most future development will be around 20 minutes away in Boyne Island/ Tannum Sands or Calliope. While there is more land around Mackay capable of being developed you are no doubt aware of how long it takes for the Mackay council and local developers to bring the land to market. And most land left is either low lying or very hilly, meaning the cost to deliver lots is higher.

We are very confident is the medium to long term prospects for these regions an hope that investors can be patient. If they hang on happy days are ahead.


By: Chris Halpin

Specific Property Advice - Press Release

Friday, September 06, 2013

Here is a press article link about HNW Planning and an exciting initiative with direct property: .

It’s mostly but not entirely accurate. 

There will be education and professional membership standards required before you can start to provide Specific Property Advice. We will publish these details as soon as possible. We are trying to time the publishing of details, re-writing of Controlled Documents and other requirements to a second important initiative that’s being explored. 

Being able to offer Specific Property Advice may be a great way for you to increase your revenue. There are many clients who need specific property advice and there is no real source of that professional advice that is not otherwise limited in what that adviser can say or do OR who actually represent the vendor. Examples may include:

  • How to manage a property in old age (aged care) scenarios
  • Young couple seeking a strategy to enter the property market (buy big now or buy little and upgrade later)
  • Mature investors
  • Up-graders looking for strategies to minimise their personal debts when transacting on properties
  • SMSF property investors.

Significant Opportunities

With two thirds of wealth in property, opportunities are significant. 

And because you'll be able to advise on old and new property you’ll be able to strike up meaningful relationships with suburban real estate agents. 

Note that there are no exclusive arrangements as implied in the article but those mentioned in the article have been of great assistance to the process of gaining the new PI Insurance. 

Remember - Specific Advice can’t be done without training and professional membership. Details to follow as soon as possible. 

Kind regards,


David Hamblin

Operations Manager


HNW Planning Pty Ltd AFSL 225216

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