Real Estate

My Magazine Article!

Reading Time: 3 Minutes

Hola everyone!

How’s it goinnnnng?

Brrrrrr, winter is coming for old Sydney town ain’t it?

What better to do than rug up warm and catch another rendition of your favourite personal finance and development blogger.

Today is a SPECIAL post, because it’s the first time yours truly made it onto a national publication… YAY!

Wait, what post and what publication?

Well, I’ve been a long-time reader of Your Investment Property Magazine, which is an… investment property magazine… for errr…you.

That’s me! Schoolboy charm and dapper good looks…

“YIP” and the other publication “Australian Property Investors” were (and still is) two of my favourite past-time reads, both dedicated to property investment.

There’s always a thing or two to learn and I especially like reading up on investor’s stories – the real stories of everyday folks just like you and I.

So when the opportunity came to write for one of them – hell’s yeah I was gonna do it!

It was a simple brief:

“…At the moment, we are working on a cover feature for an upcoming issue, all about “bouncing back from property gloom”. It might be a financial setback like job loss; a divorce or separation; investments that fail to perform; or just bad decisions made along the way. Would you be interested in contributing some of your insights to this?”


For those of us frugally responsible not to spend the $9.95 on the hardcopy (good for you!), here’s the transcript of what I submitted (magazine version differs slightly… something about editing Boo).


Mistakes? I don’t make mistakes… is not what I said, for I have made PLENTY of them.

From the time when I thought I was a share-trading genius (lost $40k, the pain still stings), to the time when I slowly bid against myself under the ruse of a cunning agent (the sly fox got an extra $25k), I’ve made more investing mistakes than one can count.

But the greatest investing mistake from the school of hard knocks is the mistake of not taking action on the one that got away…

Back in 2009 – we were looking to buy around the North Parramatta region in Sydney.

After months of open inspections and calls to agents, we happened on a four-bedroom townhouse as a mortgagee sale, with the auction to be held the following week.

The poor owner purchased it 3 years ago off-the-plan for nearly $600,000.

On the morning of the auction, it felt like the heavens really opened up – it was windy, it was wet, and it was positively freezing.

Related image
“Based on a true story.”

So when we arrived, we were accosted by the sight of the agent (looking ab-so-lute-ly miserable) and one brave neighbour.

We were the only registered bidders, and thus the auction began…

“…any opening bids?” Uttered the agent.

“…” was our silent reply.

“The bank bids $310,000, this is the reserve”. He said, looking directly at us.

Now at this moment… a $1 bid over would have snatched it.

“…” Still we kept silent, just shook our heads and left.

The price of not bidding? Well, in 2017, I saw a similar townhouse in the complex sold for $1.1m.

I think, I think we’ll leave it there.

Image result for facepalm

There were many reasons which we did not bid – it was on the main road, the strata fees were too high and it was also during the depths of the GFC, when doom and gloom prevailed everywhere.

But most of all, it was fear.

Fear of the unknown, fear of making a mistake and fear of losing.

So how did I overcome this?

Here’s what I learnt from that pivotal experience.

Leave the emotions      

I’ve learnt to not be affected by market sentiment or fear of the unknown. Investing in any asset class is about numbers and strategy. If you are a believer that prices will rise in the long-term, leave the short-term thinking at the door.

Advice is key

Investing can feel like an individual sport but the best investors are team players, if you don’t know something, ask. Build your team around you, be they an accountant, mortgage broker, property manager, real estate agent, depreciation expert… the list goes on.

Forgive yourself

Recognize that mistakes and failures are going to happen to you eventually, it’s what makes us human. Don’t dwell too much on what went wrong, instead forgive yourself and learn from the errors to ensure the first time, is the last time.

Keep going

The most rewarding things in life are the hardest; don’t sit around feeling sorry for yourself, keep going! Success in investing is really just a numbers game, if you’re holding onto more winners than losers, you’ve come out ahead.

Take it from me, I’ve been using these lessons to buy the next property, and the next, and the next!

They say the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, and the second best time is now. If you want to bounce back and make a financial impact in your life, take that first step. Pick up an investing book, go to a seminar (but keep your wallet at home!) or build that team around you – in 20 years time, you’ll thank yourself for it.



So very exciting!

Mind you, would love to write a bit more for whomever and whoever, why stop at one right? Baby steps, baby steps.

I hope you enjoyed the article and frankly pretty humbled that there are one or two of you out there that see some value in what I write. Thank you!

So there ya go, thought I’d share with you all a small victory in The Frugal Samurai, onwards and upwards as they say.

Until next time!

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