New home? Art collecting for the young investor.

hannahsroomThe home is one of the biggest investments you’re likely to make in your life. The things that go in it? Not so much. With the exception of antiques, anything you’re likely to put in your home will depreciate quickly. That giant TV? Outdated in 12 months. The super expensive leather Chesterfield couch? It may become more comfortable, but not more valuable.

There another exception to this rule—one that looks more in place in a modern home than great-grandma’s tea chest. Art.

Not only is art a potentially profitable long-term investment, but collecting is a lifestyle that can be a lot of fun. And as the gorgeous photos at Hannas Room show, it can make an incredible difference to the livability of your new place. While the perception of the art collector is one with grey hair, plenty of expendable funds and time on their hands, the modern collector is often a young professional or couple looking to move away from the band posters and Kmart prints that covered their walls during their uni days. Lifestyle magazines like GQ regularly feature art updates in their culture sections. And with recent changes to how art is valued in self-managed super funds, art has become a buyer’s market. There has never been a better (or cheaper) time to start investing. Continue reading

When off the plan apartments go wrong

Off-the-Plan or Off the Rails? What happens when things go wrong.

With home buyers (particularly first timers) becoming increasingly price conscious in recent years, off-the-plan developments have really taken off. Buying off the plan presents an opportunity to save money and buy a beautiful new home or investment property. But like any type of investment, it also carries some risks.

What’s important is how you, as a buyer, mitigate those risks and ensure you’re working with a developer that has your best interests at heart and will deliver a quality product that matches the promise you’re essentially paying for in the first instance.

So how do you really know what you’re paying for? How can you ensure you don’t buy a lemon? We talked to Independent Property Group’s Managing Director of Strata Management Erik Adriaanse and Executive Director of Project Marketing, Wayne Harriden to get their insights on what to watch out for, the issues surrounding off-the-plan development, problems with the industry and how to ensure you get what you pay for.

The Problem at Hand

The headlines have been coming in thick and fast recently—‘Asbestos Discovered at WA Hospital’, ‘QLD Asbestos Scare Prompts Union Alert’, ‘Asbestos Tests Halt Chinese Products’… the list goes on, but the question remains: Why is this happening? Continue reading

Dirk Bolt Goodspeed house Curtin

Behind the masterpiece ‘Goodspeed’ house.

Raoul and Helen Middelmann moved to the Goodspeed house in 1983, drawn to it by its location backing on to Oakey Hill Nature Reserve and its architectural design. Set well back from the street and without a back fence, the sense of space is uninterrupted. The Goodspeed house was designed by renowned architect Dirk Bolt and built in 1967. It was one of several private properties in Curtin that he designed during a period when he was contracted to help shape the look and feel of Canberra’s suburban centres.

The detached residential homes designed by Bolt were based on three principles: the seamless flow between the indoors and outside, the use of natural materials and attention to detail, and proportions based on the golden mean.

The Goodspeed house makes the most of its setting. For Helen this interplay between the home and its surroundings is what makes her house special. “When you come home you open the door, walk through the entrance hall and up the five stairs and look straight out to the reserve at the back. This always gives you a sense of peace.”

The large front garden with a variety of established deciduous and evergreen trees and shrubs screen the home from the street and provide a park-like setting for the home.

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Auctions – losing the property, our dreams and faith in the system

Auctions are hard. Mondays with no Game of Thrones kind of hard—particularly if you’re emotionally invested the property you’re after. The never-ending merry-go-round of inspection, auction, inspection, auction can become both exhausting and disheartening. And every time an agent does a Charleston two-step trying to avoid the pretty simple question of how much?, every time a property goes for well above the price guide, every time it gets passed in despite your very reasonable bid, that iron nugget of disappointment in your stomach grows a little hotter, until you’re burning with fury.

Account Manager Jade Merriman knows the feeling all too well. “It’s devastating; you get your hopes up; you imagine living there; you start planning your interior design; you’ve gone 10 times to the property; you’ve snuck in there on a weekends because it’s empty and you can’t help yourself; you’ve told all your friends about it—and then the opening bid is higher than your top bid. Continue reading