February 12, 2020 by Dymphna

Overcoming a Flat Market – The Lessons You Can Learn From a Regional Couple Who Made Property Work for Them

People in regional areas often find it a little more difficult to invest in property. But with the right guidance, you can overcome the barriers and succeed.

Let’s be honest…it’s often tough to access what you need to succeed as an investor when you live in regional Australia.

Most of the big conferences and events take place in the major cities. If you want to attend them, you’ll have to shell out for travel costs as well. And it’s not like many investment gurus are making their way to your neck of the woods either.

The good news is that I Love Real Estate (ILRE) accounts for these issues. With so much of our training available online, you don’t have to let your location hold you back.

One regional couple found this accessibility extremely valuable in their efforts to escape a property catastrophe.

The Mining Boom Goes Bust

Our couple’s story starts in regional Queensland.

Together, they’d bought two properties in the region at the height of the mining boom back in 2010. Of course, the mining boom eventually went bust.

The result was a 35% loss in value for both of their properties.

And that loss amounted to about $200,000.

At least they still had about $30,000 of equity built up, even with the loss. Unfortunately, that money was all tied up in a loan, which meant they’d struggle to access it.

If they were going to succeed as investors, they needed to learn more about the property niche.

That’s when they came across I Love Real Estate.

The Jumpstart Happens

The couple calls themselves “one-day groupies” because they struggle to attend the larger ILRE events.

It was at one of our one-day sessions that they made the decision to join our community. With us, they learned about positive cash flow properties. And more importantly, they learned that such properties exist, even in a seemingly flat economy.

That was a huge lightbulb moment for them. Such properties didn’t exist in the regional area where they’d been focusing their investing.

Now, they saw that they could profit if they widened their scope.

Inspired by the sessions they’d attended, they started to take action. First, they leased out a couple of rooms in one of their properties. 

At $150 a pop, that generated some positive cash flow for them.

But at this time, they were both still working full-time and ploughing 50+ hours per week into their jobs.

Still, they found the time to research some other opportunities. And the first major one they came across was a mortgagee-in-possession property that they landed for $85,000.

They spent about $20,000 renovating it and managed to pull the value up to $140,000. And it now pulls in a positive cash flow of $6,000 per year.

That’s a pretty decent profit…

But they’d logged over 500 hours of work to get the property to that point. Clearly, there were some efficiency issues that they needed to clear up.

Still, they’d got the ball rolling and now they had some experience under their belts.

A second distressed property followed and they managed to cut the amount of time spent on it to about 200 hours.

You can see the improvement already!

They managed to land that one for $87,000 and it’s now generating about $7,000 in positive cash flow.

They’d found a formula that works! Buy at the low end of the market, renovate, and then sell for a profit.

Where Are They Now?

The couple repeated their strategy several times, and they’re now in a much stronger position.

As we mentioned earlier, they came to ILRE with an equity position of about $30,000. What we didn’t say is that they also had a negative cash flow of $30,000 at the time.

Today, they have $250,000 in equity spread across their entire portfolio. Better yet, the properties they’re renting out generate $18,500 per year in positive cash flow.

And they’re just getting started!

There are plenty of lessons you can learn from this story. Here are three that any new investor should keep in mind.

Lesson #1 – Seek Out Education

Our couple admits that they made their early investments with very little knowledge under their belts. Since they lived in a regional area, they didn’t have access to education about specific strategies they could try.

They just knew that investing could lead them to where they wanted to be.

To avoid making investment mistakes, you need to get educated before you spend. The good news is that ILRE provides plenty of online materials for those who live in regional areas.

That means you can learn, even if you can’t make it to the events.

Lesson #2 – Broaden Your Scope

Before coming to ILRE, our couple didn’t even know that it was possible to find positive cash flow properties.

They’d only experienced their flat regional market. And they assumed the rest of the country operated under the same market influences.

It doesn’t.

Each state has its own market, influenced by an array of different factors. When you broaden your scope away from where you live, you have the chance to find even more opportunities.

Lesson #3 – Figure Out What Works and Repeat It

Buying distressed properties and renovating them is the strategy that works for our couple. It allows them to get into the market at a price they can afford. And now that they’ve gotten more efficient with the renovating, they’re able to create sizeable profits.

That specific strategy may not work for you.

But there is a strategy that will. And once you find it, you need to master it and repeat it.

Don’t Let Location Hold You Back

Our couple struggled with lack of knowledge due to living in a regional area. This meant they ended up making some investments that didn’t turn out so well for them.

But once they joined the ILRE community, they managed to turn things around.

The key message here is that education is the key to property investment success. Your location doesn’t have to hold you back. Seek out the right mentors online and you can find the strategy that will work for you.