You can’t beat getting out and pounding the pavements, as they say, when it comes to getting to know a neighbourhood before investing. Each area is different and looks different at different times of the day and night. Enzo Raimondo will tell us about a website that has been designed to be the ‘property insights site’ and can help you get a better understanding about an area before you buy.
Kevin: You cannot beat getting out and pounding the pavements, as they say, when it comes to getting to know a neighborhood before you invest your hard-earned cash in a property. Each area, of course, is totally different, looks different, even at different times of the day and night.
Now, View is a website that’s been designed to be the property insight site, and they can help you get a better understanding about an area before you buy. Enzo Raimondo, the man behind the site, joins me now.
Enzo, thanks very much for your time.
Enzo: Thank you, Kevin.
Kevin: What information is available now to help someone understand an area before they buy, Enzo?
Enzo: There is so much information available, Kevin, at the moment. On View.com.au, we have as much information as you could possibly want on any particular property in any street or suburb of any city in Australia.
We have how many times it sold, what it sold for. We have neighborhood information. We go right down to what they call an SA1. It’s an ABS measure of about 800 people living in a part of a suburb, and we actually have the demographics of what their interests are, whether they own a home, and how many kids they have,
We call it “meet the neighbors.” You can actually work out what type of people live in that area. We show a map with schools, shops, restaurants, etc., and then median prices for houses and units in the area and all the surrounding properties on the street you’re looking at, so lots of information.
Kevin: The site is called View.com.au, and as Enzo said, a lot of tremendous information in there if you just want to get a bit of a handle on what the area is like. I’d suggest you certainly do that before you get out of the car and walk around.
I always recommend to people, if they’re looking at a property, Enzo, they should look at it at different times of the day, the night, even on weekends because it does change area to area, doesn’t it?
Enzo: Absolutely. You want to make sure you have a look at the house or the street you want to live in at all of those times to make sure that it’s where you want to live and the people who live there are neighborly and it’s a nice atmosphere.
Kevin: Enzo, I know you’ve been in the industry for many, many years and worked at a number of the institutes around Australia. Where have you seen buyers go wrong with the selection of an area? Where do they fall down and make mistakes?
Enzo: I think it gets down to not necessarily area, but possibly they may let their heart make the decisions instead of their head. Some people might fall in love with a property and pay over market rate for it and struggle to see capital growth.
My advice is always do some research, work out what prices are doing in the area, and you can fall in love with a property, but just don’t over-commit yourself and make sure that you’re paying not as much as what the vendor might want, which may be a bit optimistic.
Kevin: I guess when you’re buying an investment property, it very much is all about the head decision, but when you’re buying a family home, it’s a bit of a combination of both – the head and the heart, isn’t it?
Enzo: Exactly. It should be in balance and not necessarily with the heart because it might be a bit painful later on when you’re trying to find the mortgage payments.
Kevin: That’s very true. Just help me a little bit there with some of those important considerations of buyer needs to make. Let’s say for someone who is buying into a property for the family, the family is going to grow up. What are some of the considerations you think they should bear in mind, Enzo?
Enzo: That age-old saying of “Location, location, location” is still very relevant today. If you’re a family and you’re looking to send your children to a particular school, obviously, look at the schools in the area, look at the amenities in the area. If you have young kids and they want to kick a ball, you want some parks around the area that they can play in and be safe in. I’d look at all those things: location, amenities, schools, transport.
I remember moving from Adelaide to Melbourne. I wanted to send my kids to a particular school, so we looked in that particular area and it happened to have the transport, the tram to the school so that I didn’t have to drop the kids off. It’s very important when you’re relocating to make sure that the kids are able to get from home to school and back again very easily.
If you need to go to work and you want to catch public transport, I’ve always been fortunate enough to live 10 or 12 km from the CBD and I just can’t imagine living 30 or 50 km from the CBD and having to drive or catch a train or something to work, because I think it’s valuable time spent on a train. But unfortunately, it depends on your budget.
Look at those things. You might want to live further out from the city for the lifestyle; it just means that you’ll have a bit more traveling time. If that’s what you prefer, that’s good, but make sure you have a fast transport route to your place of work if you work in the city, etc.
Kevin: Always good advice, and if you want to get a good handle on an area we mention, again, View.com.au. Go in and have a look at the area that you’re looking at buying a property, and you’ll get some great information there.
Enzo Raimondo has been my guest. Enzo, thank you so much for your time.
Enzo: Thank you, Kevin.