Time saving tools for your favourite property investor

Finally – you can stop looking because you’ve found it – the “perfect” gift for your favourite property investor – even if it’s you!

No, you can’t wrap this gift, but it’s free, takes up very little space on your hard drive and can be used year round! What more could you ask for? Okay, scratch that…but it IS a great list of some really useful resources!

Research/Due Diligence

No doubt you’ve heard the story about the poor investor who lost his shirt on a property because he didn’t do his “due diligence”. Now there always have been – and always will be – certain risks associated with investing in property, however much of that risk is mitigated by performing a thorough inspection of the property’s title – and the property itself.

If you’ve been investing for any length of time, there’s no doubt you’ve heard of the following websites, however do you know the tips and tricks to making your searches more streamlined? Here’s some quick tips you may not know – or if you’re like me, you’ve forgotten!

Property specific search engine
 Buy Specific Data

Planning and Organisation Tools
To achieve financial freedom through property investing, you will need more than one investment property, however whether you own one or one hundred investment properties, organisation is not only desirable – it’s vital.

The following tools – both free and paid – will help you keep track of important information on your properties:

Analyse cash flow, capital growth, loan repayments, estimated income, expenses, taxes and depreciation before purchasing.

Feedback and control
Portfolio tracker
As your property portfolio grows, so too do the responsibilities. The portfolio tracker can help investors obtain information about their investments with just a few keystrokes. Tracking more than 70 different elements per property, your favourite property investor can have a good grip on how their portfolio is performing!

Mobile solutions:

Property Log Book
Keep track of your properties, including financial information while on the go.
Feasibility spreadsheet/software for development

Estate Master – Covers the following factors:

  • Residual Land Values
  • Feasibility Analysis
  • KPI Forecasting
  • Scenario Analysis
  • Joint Ventures
  • Financial Reporting
  • Risk Management
  • Multi-Stage Consolidation
  • Professional Reporting

Devfeas – Provides reports on:

  • Starting a property development project
  • Residual land values
  • Feasibility studies and residual investment values involving after-tax properties which have already been developed
  • Feasibility studies for investment property which hasn’t been developed.


Budgeting tools
National Australia Bank (NAB) have many fantastic tools to help investors – and “would be” investors/homebuyers to successfully manage their finances.

Moneysmart offers a user friendly yet powerful tool to help the budget planning process.

Networking and Communication Tools

Social media tools
Many of these sites you’re probably already using on a personal basis, so your familiarity with them will put you ahead of the game!

The free version allows you to monitor as many as 5 social networks, so you can connect with other investors or even monitor the real estate activity in a particular marketplace.

Social media websites and forums

Google’s social media site has been taking off by leaps and bounds ever since its inception. It has vibrant real estate and real estate investing communities, allowing you to meet and connect with like minded people all across the globe!

Fun/Cool Stuff!

Property Investing Simulators
Created by Commonwealth Bank, this fun and exciting game, “…helps users de-mystify the often complex world of property investment, including simulating ongoing costs, without ever putting any of their own capital at risk.”

Property Game Workshop
Positive Real Estate’s Property Game Workshop is a fun and FREE way to connect with like minded individuals. The fast paced action pits investors against each other as they race to be the one who finishes with the best portfolio.

The best resource in my opinion, is a fellow property investor because he or she has been there…in the trenches and knows what it takes to get the job done.

Please share what has worked for you in the comments below. I look forward to hearing your thoughts!

Is Port Hedland on the move again?

Musings on the Pilbara. Now that the election is out of the way it would seem that the battered and bruised Resource Sector is set for a recovery in sentiment and confidence.

The lower confidence levels and the element of negativity surrounding Iron Ore of late seems completely at odds with the reality of whats happening in the Ore market. This is the case for both price and export volumes. Iron Ore prices have held up well and have in fact been steadily increasing in price over the last 12months and market price is now ranging in the $130-140 per tonne. Up from $87/ t a little over 12 months ago.

At the same time the major Ore exporters have all been increasing their volumes of export through the Port, setting new tonnage records month on month it would seem.

With the Roy Hill mine developmental stage underway, Rio Tinto reviewing their expansion plans, FMG is increasing their export tonnage and now focussing on new projects. Combined with BHP’s outer harbour expansion plans looking likely to continue, (with an announcement due before year end ) things are looking up for property owners and investors in the Pilbara and other resource driven mining areas.

We are seeing an uptick in investor interest now since the election result with the phone starting to ring again. On the leasing front there now appears to be a lot of movement as existing tenants look to upgrade their accommodation going forward, and many looking to reduce their rent as their leases lapse.

What this means to you as an investor or potential investor is that there will be some opportunities for both entry level at the lower end or for existing investors already in that market looking to increase their portfolio.

One such opportunity exists that I’m aware of is where a developer is prepared to profit share with the first group of investors in a development where they stand to make circa $150k instant equity on completion – now who wouldn’t be interested in that. There are deals out there – but one has to look and be prepared to act.

Queensland Residential House Market Is On The Move

THE Queensland residential house market is on the move with sales growing and prices firming in many areas, said the Real Estate Institute of Queensland (REIQ).

The REIQ September quarter median house price report found that the preliminary numbers of house sales across the state grew by 9% over the September quarter.

Quarterly sales growth was recorded across south-east Queensland as well as in far north Queensland.

However, the run of good times for mining districts appears to be slowing with quarterly sales volumes falling in central Queensland and associated regions over the past year.

REIQ CEO Anton Kardash said as the Queensland market had been posting promising results for the past year there was now no doubt that the majority of the market was well into a growth phase.

“REIQ accredited agents had been waiting a long time – nearly five years in some areas – to finally experience some good times again,” Mr Kardash said.

“Unfortunately the Queensland market has never been consistent across the board.

“We often experience phases of recovery and growth in some regions, while other areas simultaneously experience patches of more stable activity.”

Mr Kardash said of course, mining districts were performing exceptionally while the majority of the state remained in the doldrums not that long ago.

“So it’s good to see that we all still get a turn at the good times at some point in time.”

But Mr Kardash said that unlike Sydney and Melbourne, which appeared to be experiencing levels of relatively unsustainable price growth, the Queensland market was taking a more measured approach.

“The majority of our regions experienced mostly unchanged median prices over the September quarter, although over the year we are starting to see some healthy median increases,” he said.

“It’s also important to remember that house prices in Queensland still remain slightly below their most recent peak so we are not talking about significant gains taking place over short timeframes.

“Given the price increases in the southern states, there is no doubt that Queensland remains one of the most affordable places to buy or invest in property.

“With this in mind, we are likely to see an increase in interstate investors and migrants taking advantage of these excellent opportunities.”

The Gladstone, Mackay and Townsville markets have experienced falling numbers of preliminary house sales over the year ending September.

But Mackay posted a 5% increase in activity over the quarter as well as a steady median house price.

The heat in the Gladstone market continues to dissipate with its median house price dropping by 8.5% over the quarter to $437,000.

The more affordable house prices, however, are likely to attract buyers back to the market in 2014.