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WHAT’S IN THE GUIDE?

 In simple, jargon-free language, this mini guide will give you an overview of the most important things you need to learn when starting out.

  • YOUR DEPOSIT

    Learn how to get your first deposit and find the right market to buy in

  • GOOD GOALS

    Use the power of delayed gratification to set long term goals

  • YOUR LIFESTYLE

    Weigh up the pros and cons of renting versus owning

  • STAYING FLUID

    Understand the changing landscape of investing and what’s driving it

  • GET A BUDGET

    Work out how to manage your money and achieve your goals

  • STAYING SMART

    Understand why a smart investor always chooses long term wealth

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Chapter 1

Getting Started

I would give any school leaver who, like I did, thinks stacking shelves is a lousy way of making money the following advice: buy an investment property as soon as you can. The first deposit is the most difficult to save and often you need to beg, borrow and do everything but steal to make it happen. Don’t worry though; once you’ve started building your portfolio, your appreciating assets will help you fund future deposits and your investment journey will really take off.

It is okay to ask other people for help if you are a bit short on your first deposit because by the time you save that extra money, property prices could have climbed again. Beforehand, budget and save to prove that you can stick to a plan and demonstrate that you are making a sound investment decision and have an exit strategy in place.

Another idea is to offer to pay back a higher rate of interest once the investment is refinanced and the borrowed money repaid. There is nothing wrong with using other people’s money to get started, provided you understand the basics of systematic investing and can make sacrifices when you need to. I’ll talk more about borrowing for your first deposit and sacrifices shortly.

You could also consider buying with someone else, who understands and shares you long-term plan, like your brother or sister. My brother Matt and I purchased our first property together. From this single property we each created substantial investment portfolios. If buying with friends, it is important to document the arrangement upfront, when everyone agrees on what they want. Down the track, you don’t want to find yourself in a position where one of you wants to sell and the other doesn’t.

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About the author

WHO'S AL LEWISON?

A Director of OpenCorp, Al Lewison’s property investment journey began in his 20s when he went halves in a two-bedroom unit with his brother.

It wasn’t long before he realised their equity could make him more than his day job. Over the next five years, Al built a solid portfolio of more than a dozen properties.

Al joined forces with co-founder and director Cam McLelland to turn their shared passion for property into a company. He’s had several businesses feature on the BRW Fast Starters and Fast 100 lists. Most recently, Al’s investment journey landed him a place on the BRW Young Rich list.

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