In the real estate industry, innovations are few and far in between, but as the online world continues to change the way houses are marketed and potential buyers can house-hunt, further disruption to the way people sell and buy houses is giving the industry a shake-up that may have a huge impact on the way people do business.

For an industry that hasn’t evolved a lot in decades, the time seems very right.

As proof that disruption is here to stay, investments in real estate tech start-ups reached an all-time high in the last year, and although traditional real estate agencies might not welcome the way things are shifting, the signs are that consumers are more than ready for change.

To understand what disruption to the real estate industry looks like – and what it might mean for your future property sales – it’s important to understand some background statistics.

Bye-Bye Middle Man – How To Avoid Real Estate Sales Commissions

In the US market, figures from the US Census Bureau revealed that, in 2016, around 51% of all home-buyers found the property they ended up buying online.

In the same study, though, it showed that 88% of buyers still used a real estate agent to take care of the transaction.

Today, though, as new players, such as the UK-founded Purple Bricks, enter the Australian market, property buyers and vendors have a choice to avoid the extra cost of real estate agent commissions by choosing to transact property under a flat fee model.

As far back as 2013, a study by Oxford University suggested a 98% chance that artificial intelligence would replace real estate agents in the future. With that prediction in mind and the move towards block chain technology that makes digital transactions more secure.

The truth is that, any business that sets to simplify the real estate buying and selling process and guide buyers towards handling the paperwork themselves, is on a winner. For vendors themselves, the avoidance of hefty commissions heading the way of real estate agents could mean more money in your pocket.

Real Estate Industry Work Habits Are Changing

The rise of co-working spaces across Australian suburbs is further evidence that the way we do business today has already changed. Traditional office space is an outdated concept, thanks to the convenience of modern technology that makes working remotely a breeze, and so it seems logical that, when it comes to the way real estate agents can now work without the expensive rent and office upkeep costs on maintaining a traditional office space, those reduced overheads could mean a future with more competitive commissions that can save you money.

Simply by downsizing their office space, traditional real estate agencies could save an estimated 30% of their revenue. Savvy real estate agents prepared to do business differently and find new ways to interact with their vendors and buyers, could still enjoy solid profits, as well as benefit from the potential winning clients by reducing commissions.

In an article in the Australian Financial Review earlier this year, an example of how the Purple Bricks model works was given using property developer David Fam. When he put his $3 million mansion on the market and made a decision to sell using Purple Bricks, he paid just $6780, rather than the $60,000 he would have paid if he’d chosen a traditional agent with a 2% commission deal.

Slowing Property Market Ripe For Change

Predictions of a slowing real estate market make the industry ripe for change. Other players in the game include forsalebyowner.com.au and buymyplace.com.au, and although there will always be a steady market of high-income, time-poor vendors happy to stick with the status quo of traditional real estate agents who do everything for them, the disruptors to the industry will make their mark – and that could mean great opportunities for buyers and vendors.

For more information about the finance you need to buy your dream property, talk to a member of our Lending Specialists’ team today on 03 8805 1800 or email me at barry@lendingspecialists.com.au.

When the findings of the latest Household, Income and Labour Dynamics (HILDA) survey were released earlier this year, it showed that many younger Australians were worried about their ability to save for loans.

Australia’s most comprehensive household survey has tracked the social and economic circumstances of more than 17,000 young people since 2001.

The results of the latest survey revealed that home-ownership for under-40s had taken a significant drop since 2002 – and also that, for those with mortgages, those home loans were not being paid off at the same rate they used to be handled.

One key factor is that wages have remained quite stagnant, with very little growth in recent years.

For many young people, it’s another challenge to face when saving for your home but it is not impossible to overcome.

To help you save money for your first home deposit, try these practical tips to help you secure a mortgage faster.

Set a goal

By having a clear financial goal, it’s a smart way to get your finances in better shape.

Once you work out the deposit amount you need – and talking to a mortgage broker or using an online mortgage calculator can give you a more detailed understanding of how much you are eligible to borrow – you can work towards saving that amount.

By knowing where you need to be, you can make smarter decisions about some of the sacrifices you might need to make on the journey. Yes, that new outfit or holiday might seem like fun, but if you want a first home even more, you’ll soon make realistic decisions about the long-term impact your spending decisions can have.

Open a savings account

By directing savings into a separate bank account consistently, you’ll have the pleasure of watching your savings build. If you choose an account with a good interest rate and consider the money in this special account as off-limits, you can watch the money accumulate and feel good about it – knowing that each additional deposit is bringing you closer to your home-ownership dream.

Budget for long-term success

Budgets shouldn’t be overwhelming. Create a list of your typical expenses each month, then allow for some miscellaneous expenses that invariably occur. Next, make a list of your expected income for the month ahead and calculate the difference between the two amounts. Using spreadsheet software, such as Excel, can help but pen and paper can work just as well if you prefer doing things that way.

If your expenses add up to more than your income, it might be a good motivation to talk to a financial counsellor, or be strict with yourself and think of ways to trim your outgoings. You might also be able to increase your incomings. If it’s time to ask for a raise, or look for a better job with a higher salary, think about it. If that is not possible and you are committed to the idea of your savings, taking a second part-time job could be another way to improve your savings. Be realistic and budget for the unexpected, such as car problems, the way sickness may impact your ability to earn, or other unforseen circumstances that might impact your earnings/expenses.

Negotiate a better deal with your utility companies, try walking more in your local neighbourhood, instead of jumping in the car every time you need something from the shop. You’ll spend less on petrol and you’ll be less likely to impulse buy when you don’t have your car to load your shopping into. Consider shopping for groceries in bulk to save money – choosing bulk rolls of toilet paper, for example, can save you money in the long-term.

Avoid using credit

Credit cards are designed to make it easy for you to spend money.

And when you don’t pay your bill on time? The interest costs you even more.

If you’re saving for a long-term goal, such as a house, now is not the best time to spend on other unnecessary items, such as new appliances or a new car. Be realistic about your savings goals and don’t fall into the trap of using credit to get what you don’t really need. In the long-term, you’ll be grateful you stayed focus on your bigger goal of owning a home.

With the spring selling season well underway, it’s the ideal time to get your house looking its best to help it make the best possible impact on the property market.

Whether you’re downsizing or upscaling, selling your current home and getting the highest possible price is a great way to help your financial situation, so for more chances of a stress-free and successful sale, try these tips.

8 tips for a great spring property sale

  1. Declutter and clean

Before you make your next move, plan the packing process now.

If you’ve got items that you don’t use regularly stored away, clear the clutter today.

If you haven’t used it in the last 12 months, ask yourself if it has genuine sentimental value – and consider donating it. Get rid of items you don’t really like and when it comes to things that are broken or damaged – simply throw them away.

Unwanted paperwork can be shredded and put in the recycling bin and clothes that no longer fit (or are out of style) can be either sold at a garage sale or via online selling sites, or donated for someone else to love.

If you have large items of furniture taking up space in your place, consider storing them temporarily in a friend’s garage, or professional storage hire facility, to give your place some space that will be more attractive to potential buyers.

When it comes to cleaning, paying attention to small details can make a big difference.

  1. Eliminate odours

Simply masking smells with air fresheners is not enough to rid your home of unwelcome odours.

Pleasant scents, such as freshly-cut flowers, the smell of cinnamon, the smell of fresh apples in a bowl on the dining table or of freshly-baked bread, are all positive touches.

  1. Keep it neutral

While that mint green feature wall might have seemed on-trend a few years ago, your new buyer might not love it now. Many buyers like the idea of having a blank canvas to let them add their own touches. By painting your walls in neutral tones, you’ll create a better sense of space and a broader appeal.

If you are painting, don’t forget to repair any holes in the walls first, and look at the ceilings and the trims – not just the walls.

  1. Finish those repairs

If your home improvement projects have been on hold, it’s time to get them finished.

Buyers don’t like seeing unfinished projects in a home or garden, so by taking the time to repair the little things you’ve been ignoring for so long, you’ll boost your chances of attracting more buyers.

  1. Freshen up your fixtures

Replacing light fixtures, bathroom mirrors, rusty old taps, dripping shower heads and tatty looking cupboard hardware can all be replaced for very little money – and it can make a big difference in the visual appeal of your property.

  1. Make an entrance

The first thing potential buyers will see when they inspect your property? Your front door. Make an entrance welcoming for a positive first impression. That might include painting the door if needed, replacing any damaged hardware and minimising clutter, such as too many pot plants.

  1. Staging matters

If you haven’t got the budget for professional staging, you can still make a difference with a careful eye and some planning.

Placing furniture to optimise the feelings of space and light can help your home look more spacious and inviting. And if your furniture items aren’t attractive? Consider hiding them away in storage and renting some artwork and nicer furniture during the sales campaign period.

  1. Understand your real price

By looking at recent sales results for properties that are similar to yours, you’ll understand the potential your own property has.

Exploring comparable sales and being aware of market influences that may have an impact gives you the knowledge you need to make a realistic assessment of your sales potential – and that information can be vital to help you understand how much to spend on some pre-sales repairs and refurbishments.

Remember, you do have some control. By giving your property the best possible chance to look its best, you can improve your chances to get a better sale price.

Think a house is beyond your home loan budget?

Don’t worry – apartment living could be your budget-friendly solution, but before you sign on the mortgage application dotted line, it’s sensible to weigh up the pros and cons of living in an apartment to make sure it’s the lifestyle you’ll love.

The reality is that, although apartment living has some definite benefits that offer some perfect reasons to move in and enjoy, they’re not for everyone.

To find out if apartment living is right for you, look at these potential positives and negatives of life lived in an apartment.

 

The Pros of Apartment Living

Low-maintenance lifestyle

The body corporate is king and when major maintenance issues occur with the building, some of it comes under their jurisdiction. Of course, in your own apartment, holes in the carpet, repairs to leaky taps and what happens when your window gets stuck, are all maintenance issues that you need to deal with in the same way you would in any house. When it comes to outdoor space, though, even ground-floor apartments have little to worry about when it comes to landscaping and, if you’re up high, doing the garden each weekend could be as simple as watering a pot-plant or two.

Amenities for all

Depending on the age and luxury of your apartment building, buying into an apartment lifestyle can come with some serious perks. A common activity room with pool tables or table tennis tables can add some entertainment fun and access to a communal swimming pool or shared gym can save you hundreds in gym memberships. Some complexes also have barbecue facilities, undercover parking, storage cages and great security systems that add benefits to your daily living.

A single’s paradise

If you live alone as a first-home buyer or empty-nester, having a smaller space, surrounded by the company of others in neighbouring apartments might be just what you need to feel happy and secure.

Save money on bills

Compact apartment living usually means less money on bills for heating and cooling. Of course, that doesn’t mean you should leave the heating on all night or turn all the appliances on – even when you’re not there – but with a sensible approach to the way you use the utilities, there are potential savings to be made.

Sound good? It can be. And, of course, saving for a deposit on a lower-priced apartment offers a saving right from the start, with a smaller mortgage meaning lower repayments for a long time. But it’s not all positive and before you make a decision to live anywhere, it’s good to understand the potential downsides to make sure your move is a happy one.

 

The Cons of Apartment Living

Less room to move

The main difference between apartment living and being in a house is the fact that there is, usually, less space. Yes, that means less space to look after and keep clean but the flip-side is less space for furniture, family treasures and, often, no outdoor space to call your own.

Lack of privacy

Apartment buildings can seem crowded and that means a lack of privacy that can be annoying for some. Getting used to hearing sounds from the other side of your bedroom wall isn’t everyone’s cup of tea so make sure you check it out properly – and preferably at different times of the day and week – to get a clear sense of what it will be like to live there permanently. That reality also impacts on your freedom to make noise too. No more late night sing-a-longs to your favourite tunes without disturbing the neighbours.

Lack of autonomy

Want to add some improvements? You might not be allowed. The same body corporate that can seem a plus when it comes to maintenance issues can be a pain when you want to improve your property and discover that it’s not allowed. Do your research about how far freedom goes before committing to the purchase.

Parking

Many new developments have plenty of parking for visitors and residents but some older blocks have apartments with no car space. Check with the conveyancer to see what’s on the title before you buy. If the block you’re looking at comes without secure parking, make sure you understand the local council restrictions and what the expense of permits and local parking might be.

Despite the cons, apartment living is, for many people, the most logical way to get a foot in the door of the increasingly competitive market. If you’re at a stage in life where apartment living might be right for you, explore the options. It could be the boost you need to set you on a positive path of property ownership. 

If you need advice for a home loanbusiness or commercial loanself-managed super fund loan, or an investment home loan, speak to a broker at Lending Specialists. We have a wealth of experience under our belt and a robust network to connect you to the right industry professional for the loan you need.

You get your car serviced and you probably go to the dentist regularly – but what about checking on your most significant financial commitment?

Home loans and major personal loans should never be ‘set and forget’.

By asking yourself some serious questions about your current loans, making sure that your financial commitments are in good health shouldn’t be too stressful – and the rewards can last a lifetime.

Understand the basics

Could you answer, without checking paperwork, exactly how much you owe on your home loan, what your interest is, how long you have left on your loan and how much of that is interest?

If you don’t know the basics of your home loan, it’s worth checking – or getting a professional to do it for you – to help ensure you are accessing the best possible deal for your budget.

Small changes = big savings

Refinancing a home loan can be a very simple process and with the potential to save yourself thousands of dollars over the life of your loan, it’s always worth exploring. Sometimes, getting a better deal on your interest rate is as easy as ringing your lender to tell them you are looking at moving. They will often jump through hoops to retain your business and, depending on the structure of your loan that could mean offering you a better deal over the phone.

This home loan checklist will help you find other ways to analyse your home loan to see if it’s a great time to speak to a mortgage broking specialist and get a better deal.

Whether you are about to hit the market to purchase your first home, or if you are looking to downsize or move, or even take the first steps towards an investment property portfolio to set you up for a secure retirement in style, fine-tuning your current home loan with a regular health check is critical.

A professional financial advisor is a great place to start and point you in the direction of building better wealth by giving you more opportunities to save.

If you need advice for a home loanbusiness or commercial loanself-managed super fund loan, or an investment home loan, speak to a broker at Lending Specialists. We have a wealth of experience under our belt and a robust network to connect you to the right industry professional for the loan you need.

According to the Reserve Bank, rising levels of household debt are a major concern. Its latest public statement has fuelled speculation that interest rates could be on the rise soon – especially if households keep borrowing at the current, very rapid rates.

For anyone planning to buy, that means now is a great time to lock in a fixed term contract at a low interest rate, and if you’ve got a variable home loan at the moment, it means it’s a smart time to talk to your professional mortgage broker to see how they can protect your loan at a great rate that lasts.

With newspapers around the country all reporting on the release of the minutes from the Reserve Bank’s August 1 meeting, it was revealed that the “need to balance the risks associated with high household debt in a low-inflation environment” was of prime importance on the minds of the nine-member board of the Reserve Bank.

In The Australian newspaper, ANZ analyst David Plank was quoted as saying: “The changes do elevate the focus on financial stability in a way that raises the risk of policy action at some point.” – Something that suggests the central bank might lift rates sooner than expected.

Although the news of the minutes didn’t deliver the same as the minutes from last month’s meeting, when the Australian dollar went soaring after the RBA seemed to pencil in a 3.5 per cent ‘‘neutral cash rate’’, the rise of the household debt, combined with the rising jobless rate and inflation has taken the nation’s economists by surprise.

Analysis of the figures shows that household debt, as a share of disposable income, climbed above 190 % in March. This record high has been driven by consistently high annual mortgage growth above 6% – despite regulatory crackdowns on investor lending and higher borrowing rates.

“Overall housing credit growth had continued to outpace the relatively slow growth in household incomes,” the minutes said.

How the local real estate market will react to the news is yet to be determined but with interest rates looking sure to change, it does make an ideal time for a home loan health check to understand your situation – and how you can improve it for long-term financial growth.

If you need advice for a home loanbusiness or commercial loanself-managed super fund loan, or an investment home loan, speak to a broker at Lending Specialists. We have a wealth of experience under our belt and a robust network to connect you to the right industry professional for the loan you need.

Type ‘self-employed home loans’ or ‘finance for self-employed business people’ into Google and you’ll probably end up thinking that your lending choices are very limited.

But before locking in your next loan, make sure you do your research thoroughly and understand all the options open to you to help find the finance that benefits you the most.

Running your own business can be challenging at times and being made to jump through hoops when you are applying for finance can add to the stress.

The positive news is that business owners can find lenders who are more open to dealing with them and, by discussing your situation with a professional finance broker who understands the unique issues that self-employed people face, you can find finance solutions to help you.

Whether it’s a home loan, car loan, or personal loan – or a business loan to help you finance new equipment for your business growth – dealing with an experienced loan broker can mean the difference between getting your loan application turned down and getting the good news that your finance application has been approved.

As someone used to making your own way in the business world, you’ll know that success in business comes from getting the little details right.

Approaching your finance applications should be no different.

 

Proof of Income Is Important

The main issue that self-employed borrowers face is that it can be more difficult for a potential lender to work out whether you can afford to meet your repayment obligations.

In many cases, a PAYE borrower simply provides one or two pay slips to prove their income, while a self-employed person has a much more complicated financial situation. For self-employed business people, income is not consistent or guaranteed and the lender will need to examine profit and loss statements, and understand that these statements are often two years old and may not properly reflect the current success of the business – and its potential future growth.

The process can seem frustrating for small business people hungry for finance, but it is important to realise that a lender making sure a borrower can actually afford future repayment obligations is a legal responsibility that a lender must adhere to – and it is not just a case of them trying to make your life difficult.

To help you find finance that suits you, try these 7 tips for self-employed borrowers:

1. Look for the best possible offer

Before committing to any finance application, don’t simply go to the bank where you have your existing accounts.

Banks rely on the convenience they offer and they know that they don’t have to work hard – or offer great deals – to win your business. You can usually find a better deal elsewhere if you look.

 

2. Is your financial information up-to-date?

Be prepared with up-to-date and accurate financial statements, income tax returns and notice of assessments. (Banks rarely will accept financial statements that have not been lodged with the Australian Taxation Office).

And, from July 1, with debt to the ATO now listed on your credit history, lodging your taxation-related paperwork can have an impact so it’s best to be prepared and plan your finance application properly, to ensure you tick all the right boxes for financing success.

 

3. Are you self-employed?

Before applying for any finance, it’s smart to check if you really are considered to be self-employed. If the more accurate description of your role is a contractor or sub-contractor, in some cases lenders may view you as an employee.

 

4. What are your claimable business expenses?

The most expenses you can claim, the more your income increases – and this can be the difference you need to help a lender determine if you can afford a loan.

Some claimable expenses include:

 

5. Quarantine your loan structure

If you’re self-employed, you are more likely to be able to claim some of your interest as a tax deduction, so to help you maximize that opportunity, it’s important to have the correct loan structure from the start.

The best person to talk to for this type of advice is your accountant.

 

6. Make your cash flow work

Making your cash flow work can save you interest. Try setting up a high-interest yielding account where you are rewarded for deposits and no withdrawals for specific periods. Use this to park your GST, for future payments to the ATO.

 

Remember:

By thinking about your future and assessing how your financial needs are likely to change, you can save yourself the worry of having to re-structure your loan in the near future. Getting the right advice from an experienced loan broker can set you on the right path. Always do your best to protect your credit history, because if this credit history is compromised with late bill payments, you can impact your ability to access a variety of loan options and it can be limiting.

Finance can be a great thing for small business people and by choosing the finance that suits you, you can help build your business and personal assets in a way that helps set you up for a healthy financial future.

 

If you need advice for a home loanbusiness or commercial loanself-managed super fund loan, or an investment home loan, speak to a broker at Lending Specialists. We have a wealth of experience under our belt and a robust network to connect you to the right industry professional for the loan you need.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

According to their local newspaper, residents in the relatively quiet streets of leafy Elsternwick reportedly are dealing with a few local traffic hiccups now that popular property renovation TV show, The Block, is filming its latest season in the family-friendly suburb.

Already, the word on the street is that the completed project is set to be the most expensive in the show’s history, with the educated guesses predicting that 5 period-style homes are the most likely end result for the 2989-square metre block at 46 Regent Street – one of the area’s central and sought-after locations. 

Faith in The Real Estate Market

The show’s producers put their trust in a vibrant real estate market on the line by paying around $4 million more than the previous most expensive site for the show, with land title documents revealing that $10.34 million was spent on the vacant block that settled back in January, 2017. Once the program’s production costs, and renovation costs, are met, it’s expected that the producers will be hoping for a $7million-plus profit – a figure that would match the profit The Block producers made when their purchase of an old soap factory in Port Melbourne for about $5 million saw the creation of five luxury apartments return about $12.05 million at auction.

Because Regent Street sits within Elsternwick’s Heritage overlay area, previous plans to develop the vacant land – including one plan to build a private boys’ school campus on the site – were abandoned after community complaints that the school would change the neighbourly atmosphere of the prized street. 

Property Investment is Serious Business

For keen property investors who love the idea of owning a part of television history, the sensible advice is to tuck your emotion out of your buying decision and do your proper research – just as you should with any major property purchase.

Before you decide if a property is worthy of your commitment to a mortgage – even when you can access a great interest rate – it’s important to research recent sales and the changing demographic of the suburb to ensure you make the right decision that suits your budget and your lifestyle.

Becoming the owner of a property fresh from a TV show renovation might seem like a lot of fun but if the media frenzy means you’ve paid more than it was really worth, it might be a property decision you’ll regret – long after the TV ratings wins have been forgotten.

Choosing the Property That’s Right For You

To select the best property to suit your needs, you first need to be realistic about what those needs actually are. If you’re a family person with children who need to access quality schools, you need to see what’s around the area you have your eye on, what zoning restrictions might be in place and what parks and recreational sporting places are handy for weekend and after-school fun.

Local shopping – preferably within walking distance – might also be important.

If that property you love ticks all the boxes that matter to you, your next step should be talking to a mortgage broker to secure the finance you need – and whether it’s been shown on television or not, remember that your best possible property will be the one that feels like home.

 

If you need advice for a home loanbusiness or commercial loanself-managed super fund loan, or an investment home loan, speak to a broker at Lending Specialists. We have a wealth of experience under our belt and a robust network to connect you to the right industry professional for the loan you need.

 

If you’re like a huge percentage of Australians who ignore their superannuation until it’s too late, it’s time to take control.

For a lot of Australians, superannuation needs to form a significant part of their retirement plans and if you fit into that category too, the good news is that there are some steps you can take to help make the most from your super for a more secure financial future.

 

1. Take more risks

Everybody’s threshold for risk is personal but unless you know what yours is by talking to your accountant and financial planner, how do you know what risks you might be able to take?

By choosing investment strategies that are a bit riskier, you can increase your savings dramatically – but make sure it is money you can afford to play with – and not your entire super fund!

Your age is a critical part of managing a sensible investment strategy that combines risk with security – the further away you are from retiring, the more time you have to recoup any losses that might be made in a risky investment.

And, the more risk you take, the higher the odds are of creating a higher return. But proceed with well-researched caution and talk to your financial planner to work out a strategy that works for you.

Playing it safe can be great for some but it will more likely lead to lower returns.

 

2. Don’t be loyal for life

Just because you’ve always been with a particular superannuation fund isn’t enough of a reason to keep sticking with them.

If the investment options you’ve chosen don’t deliver what you need them to, it’s time to change to something that serves you better.

Talk to your financial advisor before you decide – sometimes there are insurance benefits to superannuation loyalty that may be lost if you switch funds so it’s about weighing up all the pros and cons and balancing the best option for you and your situation.

 

3. Set up an SMSF

There is a cost involved in setting up an SMSF – but it can pay off brilliantly. Professional advice is recommended as it is a confusing area and fund trustees have many legal responsibilities. Your own personal circumstances might be ideal – but be sure to talk to your accountant before deciding.

 

4. Start young and save as much as possible

If you’re nearing that golden retirement stage of life, topping up your super in a major flurry probably won’t make much difference at this point but if you’re at the younger end of the age spectrum, it’s the best possible time to plan your future financial security.

The fact is that compounding interest really can be a golden goose and the earlier you start saving consistently, the more you will benefit in years to come. Consistency is key – even if the amount is relatively small.

 

The important lesson here?

By taking control of your superannuation, you are helping yourself create the best possible chance at a positive financially secure future. To help you increase your savings potential, look at your budget and find ways to save – anything from shopping for a better interest rate on your mortgage, to finding a better deal on your car insurance or personal loan. When it comes to saving, every little bit helps.

 

So, what are you waiting for?

If you need advice for a home loanbusiness or commercial loanself-managed super fund loan, or an investment home loan, speak to a broker at Lending Specialists. We have a wealth of experience under our belt and a robust network to connect you to the right industry professional for the loan you need.

 

 

Money saved on a property purchase might mean the difference of tens of thousands of dollars on your next home loan – and that means more money to spend on other things you love. If you’ve ever worried that housing affordability in the big city feels too far out of reach, you may have considered relocating to a regional centre.

For many Australians, the move away from the metropolitan mayhem can be purely positive – but it’s important to do your research to make sure it’s a move you’ll love.

Before you trade your urban life for lifestyle in the regional fringe, ask yourself some important questions:

 

What are some good reasons to move to regional Australia?

The idea of more affordable real estate is definitely attractive. And getting away from the big city pollution and traffic snarls can also be another bonus.

If you grew up in the country, then moved to the city for education or work opportunities, the years when you are approaching life with your own young family might seem like the ideal motivation to make the shift back to give your own children a taste of your relaxed childhood freedoms in the fresher air. Or, if you have adult kids who have moved out to start their own lives you might want to retire back to your hometown, to be close to your own elderly parents. There are lots of very personal reasons behind people considering a move to a smaller regional centre and what’s right for you will depend on your own personal circumstances.

If the reason behind your long-term move is the search for a more low-key lifestyle, make sure you spend some time in that town of your dreams to ensure it is everything you hoped for. And if real estate reasons are your driving force, be sure to understand that what is affordable going in will also be someone else’s version of affordable when you try to sell. The reality of real estate in rural and regional regions is that it does take longer to sell – sometimes years if the property is unique. Be sure you have a clear exit strategy that works for you.

 

Employment Opportunities in Regional Australia

Although the broader perception is that there are less job opportunities in regional locations, the truth is that a growing number of large companies are relocating, or setting up regional divisions – and that the transition up the career ladder in many of these companies requires executive level employees to do a regional stint.

If that’s you, just be sure to think about what your options are if you pack up your entire life, then realise you do not enjoy the workplace culture – or the company makes you redundant. By the time your children are settled in and everyone in your family wants to stay there forever, finding another job at the same level as your previous role will be difficult – and could be impossible.

 

Consider The Other People In Your Life

Even if you don’t have children yet, making a big move – especially one that includes a new mortgage or car loan or other financially-related commitments – may not just be about you. You might have a partner to consider too. If your move is for work purposes, you’ll need to look at what opportunities there are for your partner to work in a fulfilling role too. Because even if they say yes in the interests of supporting your career right now, the reality is that life for them may become boring fast if they cannot find something they love doing in your new regional home.

 

Research Matters

Moving anywhere is a costly exercise – but doing it for the right reasons could end up being the best move of your life. Knowing your financial position is always a great foundation for any decision-making so surround yourself with a team of expert professionals and find the answer to suit your situation.

 

If you need advice for a home loanbusiness or commercial loanself-managed super fund loan, or an investment home loan, speak to a broker at Lending Specialists. We have a wealth of experience under our belt and a robust network to connect you to the right industry professional for the loan you need.