Financial Advice Blog

How to invest in property if you can’t afford a house

Australian's love property and owning a home is the great Australian dream. But how do you invest in property if you can't afford a house? Find out some options that may work for you.

Australians love to invest in property.  Owning a home is the great Australian dream and investment properties are one of the many ways we secure our financial future.  But almost 70 per cent of first home buyers have been forced to suspend their home ownership plans after tapping into their deposit savings due to COVID-19.  It doesn’t help either that in Sydney property prices have jumped 68 per cent over the past 10 years.  Many Sydneysiders were already struggling to get on the property ladder and now COVID-19 has made that goal even more elusive.

The good news is, starting your property portfolio might be easier than you think. Rather than focusing on a house, there are numerous options for investing in property which can be quicker and easier, allowing you to expand your investments sooner.  Here we discuss some alternative ways to invest in property if you can’t afford a house.

Buy out of your area

Buying in the suburb where you live might not be the soundest investment.  As it gets increasingly expensive to buy a home, a trend is emerging among first home buyers to ‘rentvest’.  This involves acquiring an investment property and continuing to rent, rather than moving out of your preferred lifestyle area.  Look outside your local suburb for areas with high rental yields and other desirables for a rental property. 

Consider units

If you want to invest in property but can’t afford a house, units may be a valid option. With various developments, off the plan options or complexes near universities in capital cities, there are quite a few options for buying a unit over time. Plus depending on where you buy, the rental income can be quite good.

Short term properties

With the share economy growing every day, all sorts of property options are available. People are constantly looking for unique accommodation and experiences which opens up numerous options. Land with glamping options, caravans, buses or storage converted to units are all popular on sites such as Airbnb or Riparide. With a block of land and some basic amenities, you can make $300 plus a night per accommodation. How much you make will vary depending on the area and what you offer. Check out this article on holiday homes for more information.

Buy off-the-plan

Buying a property off-the-plan means buying a property before it reaches the final stage of development. There are numerous benefits in Australia for investing in property this way, including government incentives and tax depreciation.  However, it does come with some risks, so financial and legal advice is crucial.

Keep an open mind

Even if you’re not buying a house, if you’re investing in property you still need to do due diligence. Before you start any property investing, do thorough research and get proper financial and legal advice. Ensure you save as much as you can for a deposit and fees associated with buying the property.

But also keep an open mind.  Investing in property simply because you’re fixated on the idea of bricks and mortar is not necessarily a good idea. There are commonly held misconceptions that property is the safest type of investment and that it’s always going up in value, but this isn’t always true.  Instead, you should consider which investment vehicles will be most effective at building capital based on your individual circumstances.  There are many structural, borrowing, taxation and cash flow considerations to take into account when considering the most effective investment strategy for you. So ignore the hype, media and other people’s opinions at barbeques and take the time to work out what is right for your unique situation. 

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