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Real Estate

If you own a property in Sydney or Melbourne, chances are, it’s increased in value considerably during the past couple of years. With your newly gained equity, you’re now a whole lot richer – at least on paper. You will either need to sell it or take up a new loan to unlock the equity. By taking up a new loan against your property, you could use it to purchase an income producing asset and start building your property portfolio. So, just to explain this easily: Current property value: $600,000 Mortgage: $300,000 Equity gained: $600,000-$300,000= $300,000 In theory, you...

Many Australians are finding it hard to afford to buy a home, especially when they have found the ideal suburb but a not-so-ideal price tag! So you have saved your deposit, and keep saving – only to be shown that property prices are keeping out of reach.  What do you do? Review where you can live Some of the suburbs just a 5 kms away from the ideal suburb may be within reach of your financial budget. Chances are if the neighbouring suburbs are slightly cheaper than the one/s you have been looking...

So, what’s the next step after paying off your mortgage after all those years? Research shows homeowners celebrate their financial freedom, then develop a new set of money goals.  It’s quite common for people who have paid off their homes to invest in property again. But first – there’s the holiday or well-earned break. After all, a mortgage term is a lengthy one. Property is still popular as we can touch it opposed to shares. With historic low interest rates, many are keen to invest in property while others like to invest in...

Did you know, Australia has the world's highest rate of pool ownership per capita? There are a staggering 1.2 million swimming pools across our fair land! And with Aussie summers getting warmer, that number is only set to rise.If you're still on the fence when it comes to deciding whether to invest in a pool for your backyard, have a read of this light-hearted list of 100 reasons to own a pool.

Just a do-up? If you've already got a pool, but feel it could do with a bit of a spruce-up, there are plenty of things you can do to enhance the look of your pool area without having to start all over again. Landscaping and even potted plants can make a pool look lush and tropical. Lighting makes a huge difference too, and is well worth the investment. Get inspired here. Save or splurge? Installing a pool will cost around $30,000 on average, but costs do vary enormously depending on your plans. Above-ground pools tend to be less expensive. The cost of a below-ground pool varies according to material (concrete or fibreglass), the level of excavation required, and how far you want to go with all the finishing touches like landscaping, paving, decking, lighting, and the compulsory fencing. The other cost to consider is maintenance – you're looking at around $2,000 a year for standard maintenance; more if the pool is heated.

The chill has arrived, and with most Australians using 40 per cent of their energy on heating and cooling, choosing the right solution is the difference between a mini-holiday and an expensive power bill.But with climates chopping and changing across the country, we know choosing the right solution can be tricky.So to make it that little bit easier, we‘ve put together a 4-step guide to keeping your home warm over the coming months.

Step one: Insulate, seal and draw Before going shopping and spending big bucks on heaters, without a tightly sealed home, the warm air will still find a way to escape.
  • Check that your ceiling, wall and floors are insulated.
  • Hunt around your property for drafts, and have them sealed where possible. Doors and windows are a great place to look for these gaps.
  • Draw any north facing curtains during the day to allow winter sun to heat the property.

So, what is negative gearing? If you buy a house that makes more money (in rent) than it costs (in repayments and expenses), then you can say it's 'positively geared'. So your mortgage is paying itself off. But if the rent doesn't cover the costs, then you can claim that loss on tax (negative gearing). In the 2012-13 tax year, the average loss on an investment property for negatively geared investors was about $10,000. You can reduce the amount you can be taxed by $10,000. So if you're earning $90,000 per year, the amount you pay tax on is $80,000. There's quite alot more to it from a taxation point of view including if you pay more than interest on the loan (so some of the principle loan) this can't be claimed. We also have some clients that are a little surprised as they have been paying off as much as they can on their loan.