I’m moving in two weeks. Yep, it’s all cardboard boxes and roller tape at our house. Happily married for two and a half months now, we’re on to the next big adventure.
Buying the dream home with white picket fence? No. Not for us. Not yet. We’re signing a 12 month lease and moving to an apartment in the city to be closer to work.
You see, I’m part of Generation Rent – the generation the urge to buy property passed by.
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Darryl Kerrigan may have famously asked “what is it with wogs and cash?” He could’ve just as easily asked “what is it with wogs and property?”
The Real Estate Institute of Victoria has completed research that proves what many ethnic types have known for years; that us wogs do better in the property game than your typical Aussie. If ‘The Castle’ was real and not just the greatest Australian film ever made, Farouk would by now own half the street and his kids would be well on their way to building their own property portfolios.
REIV analysis of Census data shows that many migrants to this country have better home ownership rates than those who were born and bred here. Indeed Australians don’t even break into the top 30 in home ownership rates in their own country!
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It’s the economy, stupid. Always is. On the eve of America’s presidential elections, the world’s biggest economy is showing signs of life.
The $US15 trillion economy has been through the wringer since its subprime mortgage bubble burst five years ago and took the world financial system with it.
US homeowners watched in horror as home prices in major US cities tumbled more than 30 per cent from their peak in late 2006.
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There are lots of nasty things being said about Shannon Beveridge today. That’s probably because the 27 year old trainee commercial pilot, who still lives at home with mum in Pakenham, Victoria has got what most would consider a pretty sweet deal. Not only does Beveridge live at home rent free, mum Cindy, picks up the tab for bills and food.
Sounds like a bit of a holiday doesn’t it? No planning or organising or being responsible for anything probably means life at home just hums along. Or does it? Because when you take things like privacy, independence and the power to call all your own shots out of the equation, is not having to clean the toilet really all that good?
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Percolated coffee, home-made muffins, fresh flowers and some classical music. They’re just some of the tricks real estate agents employ to lure potential buyers when selling a home.
They’re designed to prey on the senses of taste, touch and smell and convince the buyer from the moment they walk through the door that this place could just as easily be their own home sweet home.
Good idea in theory. But as it turns out most people don’t spend enough time to take all those olfactory treats in when they’re out house hunting.
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Yesterday morning ABC Radio National led a half-hour discussion on finding pet-friendly, long-term rental accommodation.
Unsurprisingly, most people who contributed to the discussion have had a rough time finding somewhere to live with their pets in tow. Some callers complained of constantly being relegated to the end of a long waiting list.
Another said even 20 years worth of references couldn’t help them make the top of the pile. And then there were the people who had to give up their pets altogether, or pass them onto willing family, friends or the RSPCA, just so they could actually find somewhere to live.
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My grandparents never owned their own home.
Like many of their generation they were worried about taking on a mortgage. They paid for this later in life.
When they retired they had very few assets, relied on the pension for income, lived in public housing and very rarely enjoyed a holiday.
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Stop all the cheering, cut off the champagne. Prevent the pollies from barking and silence the drums. The piddling interest rate cut didn’t even happen.
Today’s widely expected drop of 25 basis points was the catalyst for plenty of chest beating. Treasurer Wayne Swan tried to unleash righteous fury, the banks tried to cry poor, the unions said the banks are squeezing ordinary Australians, and not in a good way. Nothing happened. The Reserve Bank of Australia decided to keep the cash rate steady.
But was all the hullabaloo justified in the first place?
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First home buyers have just cause to feel betrayed by the Rudd-Gillard government as they struggle under the strain of seven consecutive interest rate rises which have been exacerbated by loose fiscal policy.
A disturbing new survey by Mortgage Choice has found that 10 per cent of first home buyers, who purchased their homes in the past two years, have either sold their homes or are considering selling because of financial hardship, caused by interest rate hikes.
The survey also found that another 6 per cent would sell if interest rates climbed a further one per cent, while another 14 per cent would sell if they rose another 1.5 per cent.
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Late last Friday, on the eve of the ANZAC Day weekend, the Melbourne Storm scandal raged in the Australian media. It was then that the Rudd Government chose to announce in a statement that it was reversing its policy of allowing non-residents into the Australian housing market in unprecedented numbers.
It was the third policy backflip in as many days, all under the cover of the media storm about the Melbourne Rugby League club. First, the government pulled the plug on its home insulation scheme, citing the billion dollars required to clean-up its previous mess.
Then it surreptitiously announced that the promised 230 child care centres would not be built, also by media release.
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As you get older and more cynical it gets harder for governments’ mendacity to surprise you. But yesterday the Rudd regime announced a plan so creepy and ill-thought out that it made me want to vomit.
Responding to concerns over skyrocketing house prices which are - in my opinion - primarily a result of its own immigration policy and its refusal to do anything about the rort that is negative gearing, the government annouced it was reversing its 2008 decision to liberalise the rules for foreigners who want to buy property in Australia.
Those rules had been relaxed during the GFC panic and had - allegedy - led to an influx of foreign buyers to Australia, driving up house prices and forcing decent Australians to sleep eight a room in conditions not seen since the dark days of the 1930s. Or something.
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