Australia’s pandemic property boom is well and truly at its tail end, with rising interest rates and inflationary pressures two major factors contributing to the market’s decline.
Property prices have begun the cooling process and are showing no signs of slowing down, with predictions of a 10 to 15 per cent value decline on track to be realised. Lloyd Edge, founder and director of Aus Property Professionals, has shed some light for current and prospective investors on how to best capitalise on a falling market.
“For savvy property investors and home buyers, the declining market presents an opportunity to get better value for their money,” he professed. Mr Edge’s experience as an investor, which has led to him acquiring a portfolio valued at $15 million, has insisted that investors should be looking for below market value properties.
“A buyer who pays under the perceived market value of a property will have made instant equity on the property, meaning that they’ve made a profit from day one and can use this equity to keep building their property portfolio,” he said.
One of the best ways to find such a property, Mr Edge confessed, is to harness the skills of a buyer agent, who are able to utilise their wheelhouse of skills and expertise to “uncover off-market gems”.
Another strategy to capitalise on a cooling market is to take advantage of an increased desire to sell and purchase a property from someone desperately looking to offload their property and avoid a further loss of value.
He did warn that “some sellers may want to sell fast because there is something wrong with the property”; to mitigate this risk, he advises investors to conduct a full in-person inspection and commission a full property report and pest inspection.
Additionally, he has implored buyers to be willing to negotiate terms as “flexibility is a strong negotiation tool to bring to the table”, especially in the event of motivated sellers. He has also advised investors to be proactive about their finances.
Mr Edge said that by consulting a mortgage broker, prospective investors will gain a better understanding of their borrowing capacity as well as secure pre-approval on their loan.
“This will ensure you don’t miss out on properties while submitting your paperwork and waiting for the banks or brokers to get back to you,” he said, adding that “if your finance is ready to go, you’ll have the option of making an unconditional offer.”
His final tip for investors aiming to take advantage of the current market conditions is for them to make themselves known to local agents.
“Let them know your buying criteria and budget, ask to be contacted with off-market opportunities and when new properties are listed. Ask to be added to their mailing list, so you’re one of the first to know about new listings and to inspect a suitable property when it becomes available,” he said.
Mr Edge concluded that people should “buy when they can afford to, when their finances are in order, and ultimately, they’ll be better off in the long run”.