How we bought 20 IP's in 5yrs

Sorry guys, will get to answering books,maintenance questions etc shortly.

Bonecrusher, I will answer your pm soon, honest:D

Nearly lost this thread as it was second last on the last page and I aint writing it all down again.

Cheers Brenda :)
Question and answer time.

Q. Do I borrow the full amount.
A. If I have the equity, I borrow 100% plus settlement costs also.

Q. Do I cross collateralise.
A. Yep, it's only security for the lender. They are hardly likely to sell up everything including your ppor for a default, is not a good look for their business.

Q. Do I use Pm's.
A. Yes always, they have more clout with tenants than I have and I have excellent PM's, friendly but savage on any defaulters.

Q. Hows the lending ppl been.
A. They flaming love paperwork but they also have never refused any of my applications and have approved the lot.

Q. Do I reno or just spruce things up.
A. Usually just a spruce as full reno's can get exxy and that will spoil my bargain buy.

Q. Do I reno it myself or use tradesmen.
A. Initially I did the labor jobs myself as money was tight but now I use trademen as they are tax deductable and you get a professional job if you pay for a professional.

Q. How do I research.
A. Internet sites, call RE offices, ring councils, visit area, talk to locals and shopkeepers (hardware shops are my favorite).

Q. What safety measures do I have for rising interest rates.
A. All loans are P&I variable, none are fixed, have a very positive cashflow at present and if interest rates rise then the surplus I have to fix all my tenants maintenance requests (they are spoiled rotten) will be diverted to the higher interest rates. If rates go even higher, I have a few very attractive ip's which would suit even homebuyers which I got for a cheap price but which have doubled in value. These are very pretty houses which wouldn't last a month even in a slow market.

Q. Have I made insurance claims for repairs.
A. No, if I can afford it, I get it fixed myself to save my no claim bonus. I feel insurance is mostly for damaged roofs or fires etc.

Cheers Brenda
Hi Brenda,

I have been interest (so say the least) in reading about your IP journey.
I only have one question (sorry, I am a novice). Do you have problems in borrowing additional funds to purchase further IP's?
I have my own property plus 2 IP's and would like to continue purchasing, however, I may not have enough equity to borrow 100% of purchase price + costs (ie - 105% of purchase price).
Any help would be great.


Hi Kidders

To increase your equity, perhaps you could do a simple cosmetic reno, like erect a nice front fence or paint the exterior. The new revaluation may turn up some more equity for you.

Cheers Brenda:)
Hi Brenda and all,

Im very new to this board, Ive been on for awhile. Didnt know this one existed, and boy am I glad I found it -WHAT A READ !

Very inspirational and reassuring stuff Brenda, thank you ! I dont think property investing gets any more aggressive than that ! I was particularly interested and glad to hear you cross collateralise your properties/loans. I am currenlty going through it with the NAB and have suggested they take a deposit rather that any existing equity (in my other IP's, only 2) as more security. So would you say that your borrowing capacity would have be reduced without their cross collateralising ?

I hope you dont mind a few more Q's (for everbody). Apart from not starting earlier in life, is there anything you would do differently ? ie. any costly mistakes ? Seeing you have the equivalent of a small army in tenants, any tips on keeping them happy (free xmas rent ? etc) Do you have any horror stories in regards to tenants from hell ?


Originally posted by Jay
So would you say that your borrowing capacity would have be reduced without their cross collateralising ?

X-coll has limited me somewhat, having gone further along the road. I've had to separate the loans- because, despite a 60% LVR across all properties, I cannot borrow any more until I rearrange.

It helped me in my last step, so I'm not twitter and bisted- but it does require the extra work now to separate. And, if it had not been for some quite unpreditable growth, I would have not been able to separate (I'm not even sure if I can now).
Tenants from Hell

I can honestly say we have never had any real tenants from hell.

Some have been flamin pests and the neighbours at times have also been difficult but on the whole all our tenants are a good bunch.:D
Thanks Geoff,

So I guess the obvious solution would be more of a deposit ie. lower LVR ? But your at 60% and you have to refinance, if you dont mind me asking why is that ? Do you have any advice or ideas in regards to X Coll and getting around it ?

Brenda, youve never had tenants that didnt pay rent or left in arrears ? Crikey, Ive had a few ! mmmm landlords insurance !


Originally posted by Jay
Thanks Geoff,

So I guess the obvious solution would be more of a deposit ie. lower LVR ? But your at 60% and you have to refinance, if you dont mind me asking why is that ? Do you have any advice or ideas in regards to X Coll and getting around it ?

I'm trying to refinance because I want to but more. I can borrow up to 80% in normal circumstances, and use that equity to buy something else.

Whenever you can, don't take up the bank's suggestion that they hold second mortgage against another property. Instead, take out a Line of Credit loan against the house in which you have unused equity, and use that money as a deposit for your next property- it doesn't have to be with the same lender either.

I had x-coll for two reasons.

1. My first IP some years ago, when I did not know better.

2. My most recent purchase- a block of flats, where the LMI people would not give LMI, and the bank could only lend to 70% of the value of the property. Guarantees from other properties got me the deal- and I didn't have to pay LMI. (It's been a very worth while deal- cash flow positive, and 50% growth in 12 months).
I takes me hat off to you....

2 questions if you have the time.
Someone asked ( I have just read the entire thread ) if you have one or more banks ( ? ) that you deal with and who might they be? and 2 Have you a stratagy or gut feel for places that you should not buy into.
I live in Geelong and have a few ips down here but p....d off that stamp duty is so high and now looking at country towns north of the Murray where higher cash flow becons ( that doesnt look right !)

Thanks for sharing....Elwyn D
G'day elwyn.d,

Hehe, not too surprising that NSW beckons - in my recollection, Vic has THE HIGHEST stamp duty & land tax bar none !!!

NSW and QLD seem to be on par - others? who knows ..... not me.

I'm just about maxed for Land Tax in Qld, but I will be looking at northern NSW for my next (close enough !!) unless I find a "real steal" in Qld - anything's possible.....

What a post. It seems the pages were growing faster than I could read! Brenda, your enthusiam for sharing is wonderful! Wish i could be in Qld to see you and hubbie talk. Ever coming to Sydney please advise.

Brenda and/or others....

I have a few questions from someone who is planning to buy a few (5 to 10 max up to $400k each) in the next few years. I will try to structure and avoid previous Q. (In brackets is my position)

1. With this amount of property it would appear Hybrid Trust would be the best structure? ( I note this is not your case, mine are jont with wife too)

2. Are you/hubbie employed or self employed? (self employed)
If self employed is this a problem or does bank not care? (provided I can show income but they dont understand complex stuff like trusts)

3. Council Rates? are the rates low as well. examples please purchase price v rates. (in my experience country NSW can be very high compared to Sydney as a percentage!)

4. Country Properties From reading your comments it would appear your tenants have greater respect than city folk, stay longer and cause less problems. Is this a fair call generally? (only have city properties Melb & Sydney)

5. Fixed versus Variable. (conservative - always fixed)

a. Are your variable by choice or because when fixed it is hard to add properties? (can be I find)

b. How do you structure loans? I note sometimes 1 for 3, others, 1 for 1, Any reason for this? ( I keep separate i.e. multiple loans)

c. Have you considered a LOC that gets revauled regullary and grows? Is this a good idea? Any bad points?( I have just got a $500k LOC approved)

d. Tax. Do you experince any problems with mutiple IP in one loan and vica versa? (worried $500k LOC could be tax nightmare)

Having writen all this I know you are busy so please don't feel obliged to answer all or any. Others may be able to comment being such a popular post.

Kind regards
Peter 147
Thanks Kev... I think:p

Actually you got your report out before the next issue of API. I am impressed.:D

For those of you who don't know Les and I are to be featured in the next two issues of the API magazine (they couldn't fit it all in one issue).:)
Brenda, I am just getting into property, and still tread wearily.
My parents had a lot of property when i was growing up, which I helped manage. I saw a lot of the downside because we had a lot of flats in poorer areas on the outskirts of Brissy.

I would be grateful if could you tell me:
- how you manage to keep your occupancy rates up in smaller country towns
- what sort of tenants you get, considering unemployment is higher outside the cap cities.
- how you decide to put rents up
- what insurance you use
- do you stick to houses or would you conisder a 6 or 4 pack or duplexes, and why.
- have you looked at lease options or wraps for tenants

When I managed my parents properties, I was reluctant to let younger people in as their lives are less settled and they can be more trouble than oldies (stereos, cars, parties, job changes, bad mates).
I had my life threatened by a young smart ass on probation once. (didn't know he was a bad egg till a few months after he moved in) He ended up disappearing for 5 weeks without paying rent, then rocked back up. At the time, it wasn't legal for us to remove his posessions from the unit. He trashed the unit before leaving, but the police response was 'did you see him do it?" we said no, and they said we didn't have a leg to stand on. Ho hum...

I had one block of flats full of pensioners at one stage, and that worked really well.
Hi Brenda,

Can't wait to get my copy of the mag now that I know you are to be featured in it. Hope there is a photo so I can put a face to your name. Congratulations on being such an inspiration to many.