Tag Archives: property news

Where can you have your smashed avocado and buy a house too

By now most people have probably heard about Australia’s “avocadogate”.

In case you missed it, a couple of weeks ago high-profile demographer Bernard Salt wrote in his column for The Weekend Australian Magazine that young homebuyers would have a better chance of securing a home if they gave up ordering “smashed avocado with crumbled feta on five-grain toasted bread at $22 a pop and more”.

Bernard’s comments have been met with a lot of criticism, with the accumulated cost to buy smashed avocado for breakfast every now and again probably not going to be a major contribution in affording a property in one of Australia’s major cities – namely Sydney or Melbourne.

If you bought an expensive breakfast at $22 every weekend, which adds up to $1,144 a year – it’s not going to put much of a dent in saving for a home loan deposit in Sydney where the median property price is over $1 million.

The struggle to buy in a competitive market like Sydney isn’t going to go away any time soon, no matter how many smashed avo breakfasts people go without.

Young buyers are turning to other options to get into the property market, and one of them is to move away from places like Sydney to find a lifestyle that is more affordable.

One place that is popular with young people looking for a better option than the hustle and bustle and ridiculous prices of Sydney is right here in Mudgee.

We’re seeing an increasing number of young buyers looking to buy in Mudgee and take advantage of cheaper home prices and a more peaceful way of life.

And why wouldn’t they? In Mudgee the current median house price is just $376,00 according to RP Data, and there are many fantastic properties that can be found under this price too. You would struggle to find even a unit for the same price in a popular area in Sydney.

Having the NBN service available and frequent flights to and from Sydney makes the move from Sydney to Mudgee much more appealing to young buyers than what it was in the past. Some are even able to keep their jobs in the city thanks to more jobs now offering remote working arrangements.

Plus, we have lots of fantastic cafes and restaurants around where you can still order a delicious smashed avocado dish, but it will probably cost you less than $22.

If you live in Sydney currently and would like help with finding a property in Mudgee, contact the team at Professionals Mudgee Real Estate.

Interest rates remain on hold… but for how long?

The Reserve Bank of Australia has again decided to keep the official interest rate on hold at the record low of 2 per cent.

This is now the 11th consecutive month that the official cash rate has been left on hold, despite a strong Australian dollar threatening to force the RBA to lower rates very soon.

The AUD reached an eight month high of USD $0.77 early this week, which while great for Aussie travellers, is not so good for the Australian export market where we are competing with other countries like Japan, where rates are in negative figures.

An interest rate cut may come as an easier decision for the RBA now that the Sydney and Melbourne housing markets have started to cool somewhat and there are tougher lending conditions in place for investors. Because of this there would be less chance that an interest rate cut would reignite the housing market as it would have in the past and it may in fact be a good thing for some of the slower property markets around the country.

However, even if an interest rate cut is looking more and more likely in the near future, it’s important to keep in mind that a cut won’t necessarily be passed onto homeowners.

As we have seen in recent times, a reduction in the official cash rate doesn’t necessarily mean that mortgages will become more affordable. It’s just as possible that the banks will lift their interest rates despite any decisions made by the RBA, or simply not pass on any cuts.

While we all wait to see if or when the RBA will lower rates, it’s worth keeping on top of the interest rate you’re paying with your lender and to shop around for a better deal if you think you’re paying too much.

At Professionals Mudgee Real Estate we’re interested in hearing your interest rate predictions for the coming months – do you think we’re due for a cut soon?

What home features will buyers pay extra for?

Wondering what home improvements you can make to help attract homebuyers?

Well you might not have to wonder any longer, with a survey from comparison website finder.com.au revealing the 10 most popular home improvements for Australians, and they might not be what you would expect.

While swimming pools and built-in barbecues are still desirable features for some, it was air-conditioning that topped the list of home improvements.

Of the survey’s 1,043 respondents, 65 per cent believed that air-conditioning was the most desirable property feature, closely followed by a carport or garage at 60 per cent.

A backyard (52 per cent), solar panels (33 per cent) and outdoor entertaining area (24 per cent) were also found to be popular on the home improvement list.

According to Bessie Hassan, consumer advocate at finder.com.au, the more demand there is for a feature, the more value it will add to a property.

“A home needs to have air conditioning, a backyard and off-street parking to command big bucks these days,” she says.

“Australians have become more accustomed to air conditioning and plenty of people now see it as vital. It’s pretty common in some parts of the country to get temperatures in the late 30s and buyers are prepared to contribute more if it means keeping cool at home.”

After the hot summer we’ve had in Mudgee, we’re sure that many homeowners will be considering installing air-conditioning in their homes before next summer.

However, before you go to make any home improvements to your property to help it sell, it’s always worth asking for advice first so you don’t overcapitalise.

With something like air-conditioning, it may not have the big price impact on your property that you would expect, especially as we’re coming into the warmer months where homebuyers might be more concerned about keeping the house warm.

So before you go to make home improvements to sell, give us a call at Professionals Mudgee Real Estate and have a chat about which home improvements will add the most value to your home – because every property is different and might require different improvements to help it sell.

The 10 most popular home improvements, according to finder.com.au:

  • Air conditioning (65 per cent)
  • Carport / garage (60 per cent)
  • Garden / backyard (52 per cent)
  • Solar panels (33 per cent)
  • Deck / pergola (24 per cent)
  • Dishwasher (17 per cent)
  • Swimming pool (17 per cent)
  • Built-in BBQ (4 per cent)
  • Water feature (2 per cent)
  • Garden gnomes (2 per cent)

How low can interest rates go? Will we see a New Year rate cut?

For most of 2014 financial experts have been speculating that a rate rise is in store for us in 2015, however over the last couple of weeks those predictions have been changing.

There’s now growing speculation that there will be an interest rate cut early next year, after 16 months of interest rates holding steady at the record low rate of 2.5 per cent.

At the last Reserve Bank meeting the board stated that interest rates are unlikely to change anytime soon, however there are some key indicators that could lead to an interest rate drop such as rising unemployment in the country and a cooling off of residential property growth.

The most recent official GDP numbers also show a weakening in economic growth to about 2.7% from 3.2%.

All of the above could be signs that interest rates need to be lowered to help drive spending and residential investment in Australia.

If interest rates do drop next year, the Deutsche Bank predicts that there will be two quarter-point reductions, which would bring the cash rate down to just 2 per cent.

But as we have seen with interest rate predictions in the past, things can change quickly so we will just have to wait and see what 2015 has in store for us.

What are your interest rate predictions for 2015? Will interest rate decisions affect your property choices?