Hi folks, I’m looking for some inspiration regarding future direction for my wife and me. I’ve pretty much reached analysis paralysis so am after some fresh ideas. Let me outline the situation without disclosing too much personal info; We’ve been investing in IPs pretty heavily for about 7 years now, purchasing frequently and having a pretty robust buy-and-hold portfolio now worth many millions. We caught the tail end of the last boom on the Gold Coast and have made some great buys in Sydney over the last few years so even though we financed everything between 90% and 100% we now have an LVR under 70% so heaps of equity. At today’s interest rates we’re also pretty much CF neutral after taxation advantages so everything is ticking along nicely on that front. We’ve also both been going gangbusters in the corporate world with a couple of high incomes and consequently lots of savings even whilst putting a lot of it into IP purchases. Given we’re in our early thirties, we’re obviously pretty happy with how things have been progressing. My wife is now on maternity leave and at this stage goes back to the office in September (our son is four months old). We’re starting to throw around ideas about alternative sources of income and in particular, what other options she might have beyond returning to a professional life. We’re ideally looking for greater flexibility and more opportunity to spend time with family but without paying a financial penalty. She’s a qualified town planner and has spent the last 10 years working in various areas of the property industry including with a council in the UK, a large national apartment developer in Australia and in recent years for a global real estate services company servicing corporate clients. Here she has done everything from development management, strategic consulting (highest and best use of real estate assets, portfolio analysis) and most recently client relationship management (matching existing customers to real estate services offered by the firm). Obviously this has given her some pretty valuable skills in the industry. So this brings us to the current conundrum; with our personal investing experience and her professional property experience, what should she do next? There are obviously a bunch of common avenues to pursue such as developments, renovations, subdivisions, etc but I don’t think the best use of her time and expertise is hands on renovation work and it seems like every man and his dog is doing small developments. I feel our position gives us a great advantage but the difficultly is in identifying the best way to leverage it. I would like to see wheels being put into motion now and her retaining the option to return to work if necessary and pursuing personal interests in parallel for the sake of keeping options open. Having said that, we’re pretty comfortable with risk so long as we’re confident about what we’re doing. This feels a little like one of those crossroads in life and is the cause of much pondering. There has been a huge amount of hard work put in to get to this stage and I want to keep the momentum going in this next phase of life. We have very high aspirations and are loving the journey; hopefully there are some good ideas out there about where it could take us next.