When we all get to a certain age, we often assess what’s gone before us and what lies ahead. Even with the sunniest of dispositions, sometimes that assessment makes you realise that the time to act is fast running away from you. So our success story this week deals with Karen and Rod who decided in their early 50s that they needed to do something about their financial future with their retirement looming sooner rather than later. Propertyology’s Simon Pressley tells their story. It is never too late!
Kevin: When we all get to a certain age, you often assess what’s gone before you and what lies ahead. Even with the sunniest of dispositions, sometimes that assessment makes you realize that the time to act is fast running away from you. That’s what’s called age.
Such is the case with Karen and Rod. They decided in their early 50s that they needed to do something about their financial future with their retirement looming sooner rather than later. That’s the success story we’re going to tell you about now, because I don’t know if you’re like me, but I love to hear about what other people have done, their successes, and learn from some of their lessons.
They actually turned to Propertyology, and joining me to talk about the lessons and the journey, Simon Pressley from Propertylogy joins me.
Simon, thank you very much for your time.
Simon: Good to chat again, Kevin.
Kevin: Tell me about Karen and Rod, how it all came about, and how you guys were able to help them.
Simon: Yes, a lovely couple, early 50s, Brisbane-based at the time, just of recent months, moved up to the Sunshine Coast, but what we probably generally refer to as the empty nesters, a couple of children who are now late adolescent years and have moved out of home.
Have had different careers throughout their life as most people would have by age 50, spent ten years or so of that in their own business, and along the journey, had dabbled in investing in property a couple of times with mild successes on occasion and some failures on others – such is life – but realized that in their early 50s, they really couldn’t afford to make a mistake a second time around.
It would appear that they had been looking at different companies throughout Australia for some time. They reached out to us amongst others. We were delighted when they appointed us, and they’ve since gone on over the last couple of years, already purchased two investment properties and are very close to being ready for their third.
Kevin: What were some of the lessons that came out of this? Obviously, they set about educating themselves, which was the first part of the process. Were they able to tell you about some of the things that they learned along the way?
Simon: Yes. I guess things are always easier in hindsight, aren’t they, Kevin? We’ve all done it. We don’t know what we don’t know. We all have skills, and Rod’s skills were blue-collar skills. He’s great tools of trade, got a maintenance background, had a successful career in that regard. But he felt that with property, the way to do it was to get his hands dirty, without really being conscious of what he wasn’t looking at.
The investment properties that they bought in the past were largely based on buying something in close proximity to home and then Rod saying “I can renovate it. I can do it this way or do it that way,” but had very modest results.
At the end of the day, it’s rarely renovations that make property values grow. Renovations guarantee us costs, but it’s really the broader market that that property sits within that causes the most growth.
One of the other lessons they learned was that they’d never considered investing anywhere other than their home city, and it’s probably the most common I’ll say mistake that investors make. They’re just not conscious of “Is my own city, the place throughout all of Australia that has the best potential?”
So, they realized that and then that led to another question, which is “How do I identify the fundamentals of all these locations throughout all of Australia? Who can I trust to help me pick that location out, and then find the right property when I don’t live there?”
It’s wonderful when people are able to reflect and want to do better and go out of their way to seek out professional advice.
Kevin: When you seek that professional advice out, too, you have to be prepared to listen and do it with an open mind. Obviously, the reason you do that is because you want someone else’s opinion about what you should be doing, so you have to keep an open mind about this, but at the same time, you cannot abdicate that responsibility.
At the end of the day, it’s the investor’s responsibility to make that final decision, isn’t it, Simon?
Simon: Absolutely. With every decision we make in life, more often than not, there will be a service that all sorts of professionals who do that every day can offer for you, but the devil is in the detail. It’s the consumer’s responsibility to ask the right questions and to determine whether that skilled professional is most equipped and has your best interest at heart.
But then once you’ve gone through that process to make that very important decision of appointing a professional, yes, absolutely, it would be not really worth the process if you didn’t listen to what they said. That doesn’t mean you have to do everything they say, but certainly have an open mind. If something doesn’t make sense, ask why, with their expertise, they’re making those recommendations.
Kevin: That’s the point I was making there about not abdicating that responsibility. You have to remain involved, make up your own mind.
Can I just get back to Karen and Rod for a moment? They have two investment properties. How long did it take them to put those two together?
Simon: From when we first met to settlement on their second property would have been roughly six months. It takes several weeks for both parties to get to know each other properly, to form that really professional relationship. We need to understand a lot about Karen and Rod’s background, work situation, past investment experiences.
We then invest heavily into their investment education, so we talk a lot about our methodology and how we pick certain locations. We share some history of Australian property markets to substantiate some of our beliefs. It’s all about earning trust and confidence. That’s done in the early stages of the relationship.
Then it’s a matter of working out a strategy that’s tailored for their needs. Everyone’s budget is going to be different. Everyone’s investment journey ahead is going to have different time periods. Different people have different appetites for risk. So, we need to make sure that both parties are really comfortable with each other, and then we start making recommendations about a specific city and finding an individual property.
We do it at Rod and Karen’s pace, so it would have been roughly about four months after we met when we found that first property. And we intentionally didn’t want to have two property transactions on the go, so even though their strategy was to initially buy two, we didn’t want to overwhelm them and have two on the go, as I said.
We took our time. We found one. We make sure the due diligence stacked up and got the lowest price. It settled. We got a tenant in. They took a breath for a couple weeks and then we started the process for that second property.
Kevin: I want to thank you for sharing that story with us, and I also want to thank Karen and Rod for allowing us to do it. It’s a great story. It’s one of the many stories that you’re going to pick up if you go to the Propertyology website. There are a lot of success stories there, a lot of great reasons why you’d want to deal with these guys. We recommend them. You can check their channel out, too, on Real Estate Talk. That’s Propertyology.
Simon Pressley, thank you so much for your time.
Simon: Always a pleasure, Kevin. Have a great day.