What qualities should a good investment property have?

If you are looking to buy a property as an investment there are several things that you need to take into account. It’s a very different proposition to buying a property you are going to live in. You have to think about all aspects of the property weighed up against the fact that you need to make a profit from the purchase, whether this be from a buy to sell or a buy to rent point of view.

property as an investment

We are going to take a look at some of the things you need to take into consideration if you are thinking of buying property as an investment. Remember that this is not about buying a property that you want to live in; it’s about the facts around what is going to secure you the best returns.

The age of the property

One of the things you need to think about is the age of the property you are thinking of investing in. Generally, you can expect to have higher maintenance costs if you buy an older property. Of course, you also need to consider that older properties are sometimes sturdier than new builds. The condition of the property and the quality of the build are often just as important as its age.

The condition of the property

We have just mentioned that the condition of an investment property is important and this is a vital consideration when you are thinking of making a purchase. You need to look at aspects such as plumbing and electrical work as well as the condition of the kitchen furnishings and the bathroom fixtures.

You may also want to consider whether the property has any additional features, such as air conditioning or exterior cladding such as that fitted by Peter Bracey. Features such as these can make a property attractive to potential buyers or rental clients.

The area in which the property is located

It’s not just the property itself that you need to think about when you are considering an investment. You also need to do some research about the area in which it is located. You need to find out about things such as the crime rate, schools and amenities.

It stands to reason that if there is a high crime rate in the area people may be reluctant to rent or buy there. People are also going to want good access to shops and social opportunities. If there is a lack of good schools in the area you may struggle to secure the interest of families.

All of these aspects are important when you are looking for a potential investment property. You need to make sure that you do all of the required research before you sign any contracts. Remember, that your aim is to secure a decent profit against the purchase price whether that is by getting a good resale price or by ensuring a good rental income.

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5 Incredibly Simple Tips to Get Financial Freedom with Forex

Forex Currency Exchange on White Background

You probably have already heard about Forex and how so many people have found it easy to make money on it. However, it is clear that there are also others who haven’t been so successful with this type of investment.

So, what are the key tips that will help you to invest well and achieve financial freedom with Forex?

Find Out All That You Can

As with any type of investment you are trying out for the first time, it is vital that you get fully informed about Forex. It certainly isn’t enough to just have a vague idea of what Forex is about.

Instead, you will want to become as much of an expert in this field as you possibly can. The more you know the better your chances of being highly successful, of course.

This means that you should spend as much time as you can reading about Forex and feeling comfortable about investing in this way. You will find a lot of information online to get you started right away.

Get Trained

No matter how much you read and investigate on your own, there is simply no substitute for getting on a professional trading training course. This approach will see you learn all that you need to know from an expert.

Trying to start trading before you get trained is a dangerous game, as you might make some bad mistakes simply through a lack of knowledge. You will be left kicking yourself if you mess up this investment through something like this that could have been remedied.

Getting on a good Forex course is easy to do and could make all the difference to your investment and to your future.

Choose the Right Trading Platform

There are a number of different Forex trading platforms that you can explore in order to find the right one. You should take into account the most important factors, such as whether it is free and the type of interface it offers.

Making the right decision on the platform you use will help you to get started smoothly and without any fuss.

Set Your Targets

As with most things in life, you stand a far greater chance of meeting your targets if you know what they are. If you know what you want to achieve by investing like this then you can plan for it accordingly.

This is a good point to remember that you should only ever invest money that you can afford to take a chance with. This means avoiding making Forex investments with your monthly household budget and other money you can’t afford to take risks with.

Whether you want more cash to retire early, to take a dream vacation, or just to revamp your home, there is more chance of achieving your goals if you can picture them clearly.

Analyze Your Performance

It is to be expected that you start off slowly and then begin to get more comfortable over time. This is the pattern that most of us follow with new types of investment or anything else we try for the first time.

This means that it is essential that you analyze your performance to see how you are doing each step of the way. If you have followed the rest of the tips listed here then you should get off to a comfortable start and then see your confidence grow with each passing transaction.

By starting out in the right way you can make your Forex trading a highly profitable and enjoyable way of making money. Don’t make the mistake of diving in unprepared and taking un-necessary risks that lessen your chances of gaining financial freedom.


Image credit: TaxRebate.org.uk


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What is Compensation? Could you be Eligible for It?

With the most recent report available from Safe Work Australia showing that over 115,000 workers’ compensation claims were made in the year 2012-2013, it is extremely possible that at some point in your working life, you will need to claim compensation. If you’re not 100% on what exactly compensation is, read on for a handy guide to the ins and outs of the process.

image credits: Stuart Miles – freedigitalphotos.net


What is Compensation

Compensation, in a nutshell, is payment (usually money) given to someone in recognition of some sort of suffering or injury. In this context, the injury or suffering results in a person being unable to work for a period of time, resulting in loss of income.

Could You be Eligible?

To be eligible for workers’ compensation, there are only three requirements:

  • You must be an employee of the organisation as defined by the relevant laws in your area
  • You must have a medical condition that was diagnosed by a qualified health professional and who states that the condition arose out of or in the course of employment
  • You must have suffered some sort of financial loss.

If you meet these requirements, you will generally be eligible for compensation, but it is a good idea to seek legal advice from a firm specialising in these sorts of claims, like Sinnamon Lawyers. They will be able to give you tailored guidance in relation to the strength of your case and how to proceed.

How To Claim

Before you lodge your claim, it is a good idea to understand your rights so that you can make sure the process is as quick and easy as possible. Here’s a quick list to get you started:

  • You have the right to visit your own doctor, and the right to refuse to be accompanied to the doctor by your employer or supervisor
  • You can take time off work to recover from your injury – your doctor should issue you with a medical certificate covering your absence
  • You can have your OHS or union representative accompany you when you talk to your employer about your injury or illness
  • You have the right to be reimbursed for reasonable medical expenses incurred due your condition
  • You have the right to access all paperwork relating to the claim put through by your employer in order to verify the information submitted.

This is just a place to begin – it’s always a good idea to research industry and state-specific rights as soon as possible once you suspect you will need compensation. Keep all relevant documentation you accrue as well. For further information or to get the ball rolling, contact your employer, union or legal representative.

Common Misconceptions about Compensation

To begin with, compensation is a very specific claim – you cannot claim compensation for general ‘harm’, such as hurt feelings, emotional distress or as a result of discrimination. These may constitute separate cases, about which you would need to consult with a legal professional.

Another common point of confusion is the specific claims process. This can differ between states and occasionally between industries, so you always need to research the relevant laws and consult with experts before undertaking a compensation claim.

Medical conditions suffered during the course of employment can be a point of stress for many people, especially those relying on the income to keep them afloat. Always be sure to get advice from specialists to ensure everything is in order.

Have you ever had to claim workers’ compensation? Do you have anything to add to this guide to help others in a similar situation?

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Invaluable Insider Professionals

When it comes to buying or selling your home there are lots of pitfalls to avoid. Using a real estate agent has a number of advantages (whether buying, selling, or both). Using a local realtor is by far the best option. One of the biggest investments (or sales) that we are likely to make in our lives, home sale and purchase is daunting enough. Add to this the emotional nature of the process and you have two reasons why an experienced detached professional is worth the investment! While investors in the property market are most likely to take a hard-headed business approach to both sales and purchases, this is far more difficult to do when you are buying a home for your family.


Be Ruled by Your Heart

In recent years, despite the downturn in the property market, there has been increasing emphasis on buying property as an investment. This is not always the wisest route if you’re buying a home. You do need to fall in love with a property if you’re going to live in it and a quality realtor will understand that this is part of the process. Good quality local agents should ask a lot of questions – some practical and some more personal – in order to get an idea of what you need from your next home, or what you need to achieve from a sale.


Professional Input

If you’re selling you’ll have a good idea of the price you want to achieve. However, the property market is difficult at the moment from a seller’s perspective and sadly what you paid may not be what you’ll get back. A local agent will have a thorough understanding of the local market, what prices comparative properties are achieving and also a realistic sale price for your property. They can also factor in your needs – whether that’s a quick sale or the best price. If you’re prepared to wait then a higher price may be possible. Local agents can give you clear, accurate appraisals of both your property and the price you can achieve in either case. They may also be able to advise on changes, improvements or tailor their marketing to attract the best potential buyers in a specific demographic.


Inside Information for Buyers

For buyers much of the above is also true. Even if you know an area well (and even more so if you don’t) a real estate agent who has experience in a specific neighborhood will be best placed to find the perfect home. They’ll know what is available and what the price ranges are. They should also have an idea of which properties have been available for longer (and may, therefore, be open to competitive offers). There’s no substitute for local knowledge when it comes to moving to a new area or neighborhood and this is what local agents have in abundance. The chances are they’ll know the schools well like the facilities and the infrastructure, plus any future developments and how these might impact on future property prices.


It’s all About Who You Know

When selling, realtors will often have a list of clients already looking for your type of home. This means that they can quickly act to get interested parties through the door. Local contacts with other realtors and professionals in similar fields can also be invaluable. Some realtors will arrange open houses for either potential buyers or other agents acting for buyers. The latter can in particular generate a lot of interest quickly and make the selling process fast, smooth and trouble free. Again, these advantages work well for buyers, meaning that hours spent searching for the perfect property can be cut down significantly. For those with little or no local knowledge, property details on the web can be deceptive; a home may tick every box until you arrive to find a chemical plant lurking in the background. If you’re working with a good agent they’ll take into account your needs and help to sort the good from the bad and the ugly.


Background Checks

A good, local and experienced agent can be particularly useful in today’s climate for those looking to buy, as Agent Harvest point out. They should be able to help identify neighborhoods that are rising and decreasing in popularity. They’ll understand what factors have changed in the past and influenced an area’s popularity or otherwise. Given the nature of the market at the moment, good local knowledge can also help to identify areas where prices are historically low, but likely to rise again in the future. A fixer upper in what might not seem like the best neighborhood can be off-putting, but a little local knowledge can make it seem like a hidden gem. It’s this depth of knowledge that makes a local realtor an invaluable tool in your search for a home, or in selling one and moving on.


About the author

Property investor Matthew Rivera has worked with a range of agents in the past and recommends local realtors as the best possible choice.  


Photo credits:  ddpavumba – FreeDigitalPhotos.Net


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3 Insurance Essentials for All Families


One of the most important things that you can do to protect your family is to get insurance. There are several different types of insurance, and you do not need all of them. However, there are three types of insurance that you want to make sure that you have. Below are three insurance essentials for families:

Income Protection Insurance

If you are involved in an accident or become seriously ill, then you may be unable to work for months. The bills will not stop just because you are unable to work.  That is why you want to make sure that you get income protection insurance. Income protection insurance is a policy where you are paid benefits while you are unable to work.  Continue reading “3 Insurance Essentials for All Families”

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