Why All The Panic?


Are we really heading for GFC Mark II?

Well, not here in Australia anyway! And even overseas, things are vastly different this time around.

In 2008/09, it was private debt causing the problems … because nobody was too sure which banks were overly exposed to the sub-prime mortgage problem. [Read more…]

Let’s Stop The Doom & Gloom! How About Some Good News?

For the past few weeks, the world’s media seems to have been dominated by two unfolding dramas:

  1. The extraordinary and rather amateur performance in Washington, as the US government lurched towards potential default.
  2. The concerning spike in euro-region yields, against the backdrop of their apparently insoluble sovereign debt issues.

However, as Amy Auster reported in Saturday’s Financial Review, there was also a really positive development last week (certainly for Australia), which seems to have simply “snuck under the radar”. [Read more…]

Commercial Property Fundamentals
Continue to Improve for Investors


The mid-year report from the Property Council of Australia (PCA) has confirmed a tightening of all major Office markets — except for Sydney and the Gold Coast.

As you can see from the graph, Sydney’s vacancy rate actually increased from 8.3% to 9.3% during the six months to July 2011.

For the remainder of Australia’s office markets, there was an overall improvement — as demand for space exceeded supply, and yields began to firm.

According to Peter Verwer (PCA’s chief executive): “This is a good result, especially now with a lot of uncertainty about Australia’s economic resilience … demand and absorption are well above the historical average, except for the orphan Sydney.”

From this second graph, you will also notice that the Melbourne Office market has been consistently outgrowing Sydney, since about July 2004.

Furthermore, because of Sydney’s heavy dependence upon the financial sector … this growth trend is unlikely to change any time soon.

Melbourne, on the other hand, has its Office demand spread across a wide number of sectors. And therefore, has been far less exposed to the recent global turmoil.

Bottom Line: Despite all the stock market gloom, the underlying fundamentals for Commercial property are strong — particularly in Melbourne.

And historically, it is in times like these when shrewd investors have laid the foundation for their extraordinary fortunes in Commercial property.

 

Smart Investor Seminar

Just quickly …

On Saturday 27 August, I have been asked to take the Session on Commercial Property Investing … at this Smart Investor Seminar.

And I simply thought you may have some interest in knowing what’s also being covered at the same time. [Read more…]

Foreigners Seem to Love
Our Commercial Property

Australia’s dollar may be considered high compared with other countries, but that hasn’t dampened overseas Investors who are clamouring to buy up our Commercial property.

And this only serves to confirm Australia’s “safe-haven status”, being closely aligned with the Asian region. [Read more…]

The Australian Office Scene


Last Friday, I attended the annual Commercial & Industrial Economic Forecast Luncheon.

And Dr Frank Gelber (director of BIS Shrapnel) kindly provided is perspective on the Australian economy and the Melbourne Commercial property market — looking forward for the next 5 to 6 years.

Probably the most pleasing aspect was … that his views will were pretty much in line with what I’ve been telling you here, for the past six months or so … [Read more…]

Commercial Property:
Pricing Your Finance – Part 2

Last week, you looked at the reasons why lenders view Commercial property in a different league to Residential property, when it comes to finance.

Many things can affect the Pricing of your LoanAnd then, we moved to the various aspects Commercial lenders look at as far as Risk is concerned.

More importantly, just how these aspects will determine whether or not they will actually lend against the actual property you are looking to purchase.

However, what you really want to know is … [Read more…]

Suburban Offices Set to Surge

Over the past few weeks, you have been reading articles about the various Office markets around Australia.

As such, you would now be aware of how each capital City compares, in relation to its … Vacancy rates … Rental levels … and expected Capital growth.

 You can expect definite Rental Growth in the city fringe.However, most of that commentary has been focused upon CBD Offices. And as a result, people have been enquiring about just how the Suburban Office markets are also likely to perform, over the next few years.

Clearly, a rent differential exists between the City and Suburban Office markets. And obviously, that rental gap will also vary, as you move around Australia. [Read more…]

Commercial Property:
Arranging Your Finance – Part 1

Commercial property finance is one of those aspects probably the least understood — and therefore, can lead to some are rather poor decisions by investors.

Take care when arranging your Commercial LoanThe most important thing you need to grasp is that there are basically no hard and fast rules about the various factors like … the leverage that is available … costs associated with Commercial loans or … the actual lending criteria most financiers and adopt.

When it comes to Commercial finance, everything has to be viewed in relation to the strength and size of each particular deal. [Read more…]

“Where You Live Should NOT
Dictate Where You Actually Invest!”

Always consider the emerging trendsWherever you live, you tend to believe (and will happily tell people) that it is undoubtedly the best place to live.

Really, it’s just human nature.

But when it comes to investing your hard-earned dollars into Commercial property … your decisions should be governed by something more than a warm and fuzzy feeling.

For the past four or five years, Victoria has led the nation in economic growth; and it is one of the few enjoying a net growth in migration from other states.

Employment Growth shows some interesting trendsFurthermore, the latest ABS figures now confirm Victoria’s continued growth and job creation — leading all-comers over the past 12 months.

And you’ll also notice most of the various service sectors are currently outstripping the mining sector, as far as employment numbers are concerned. [Read more…]

Office Sector Set to Surge Ahead

Offices are enjoying strong demand
Australia-wide, Office vacancies are falling.

And Melbourne leads the way at 5.5%; with Perth close behind, at 6.6% — due to the rebound in mining activity.

Offices set to SurgeAccording to the Property Council of Australia, these vacancy levels will reach 4.9% and 6.1% respectively, by January of next year.

With zero space coming onto the market in Melbourne, landlords will be well-placed to renegotiate far more attractive deals, as leases fall due for renewal.

Whereas, Brisbane’s current vacancy level of 9.2% is expected to blow out to 9.8% — making it very much a tenants’ market, as far as lease negotiations are concerned.

While rents are rising in most capital cities, selling yields are set to fall as well. This double benefit will be reflected in strong capital growth over the next four years.

Bottom Line: Shrewd investors are currently ranking their preferred Commercial sectors as follows …

  1. Office (both suburban and CBD)
  2. Industrial
  3. Retail

Now is the time for you to start re-balancing your portfolio — and ride the growth wave through to 2018.