Get on the Property Investment Track

Get on the Property Investment Track

Private Property South Africa
Neale Petersen

You’ve decided to become a property investor. There will be many choices to make along the way. Do you want to invest in residential or commercial property, or both? What categories flats, houses or townhouses? Are you going to invest in just one specific suburb or province, high growth areas or just anywhere you can find a good buy? Are you only going to invest in your own country or are you going to have a global approach and hedge yourself against the Rand?


To make informed decisions that will lead to investment success, you need to know exactly where you are in terms of your financial status, establish where you want to be, acquire the knowledge that will get you there, and select an experienced team to assist you.

Finances reality check

  • Do a reality check on your finances. Get a grip on how much money is coming in and what is going out. Do a thorough income, expenses, assets and liabilities exercise.
  • Analyse your finances and investments with the assistance of a financial planner. Your bank has financial planners that can assist you free of charge.
  • If your expenses are too high, identify unnecessary expenditure or poor investments. Also decide where you can cut back to free up cash to either settle debt or as a down payment property investments.

Educate yourself

  • Improve your investment education so that you take responsibility for your finances. Read books on property investment and personal development. It is a well-established fact that achievers are readers who are selective about the kind of books they read.
  • Network with property investors, estate agents, developers, property managers, specialist attorneys and accountants and ask them for their expertise. Take them to lunch if necessary.
  • Go online to find helpful websites. Once again we have provided a list of useful sites for you to look at. You can contact these companies for more information by email or telephone.
  • Listen to CD’s and watch videos and DVD’s of specialists who have invested in property and listen and watch their advice. We have also provided a list suppliers and where you can order them from.
  • Attend courses and seminars on property investing, exhibitions, property shows to gain information and ideas for investing.


True achievers will always acknowledge their team. Nobodyhas ever achieved anything of lasting value on their own. As you set out to select a team, be careful about your choice of advisors.

Ask yourself these questions
: Does this person earn the bulk of their income from property investments? Or do they make most of their money selling advice? Get references from other people in property investment about service providers who are investors themselves. Clarify what you’ll be getting from each advisor. Ask about billing and payment. Interview more than one candidate and always check the references they give you.

Who should be on your team?
You are getting set to embark on the journey to financial freedom by building wealth through property investment. You should never be on this journey alone. Even the most experienced investors use knowledgeable advisors and rely on competent professional assistance. Here are some guidelines as to who should be on your real estate team.

  • Estate Agent/s:
List your name with estate agents as a serious investor and build relationships with them. Give them a profile of the investment property you are looking for and they will scout for the property you want. Preferably find an agent who is also a property investor as they understand your needs better.
  • Attorney: You will need conveyancing services and legal advice on buying in various legal entities such as in your own name, a company, a trust, or a closed corporation.
  • Accountant/Tax Specialist: Seek a specialist accountant who can offer accounting and management services, as well as tax advice.
  • Bookkeeper: As your portfolio grows, it becomes essential to hire the services of a part-time bookkeeper for proper administration of your properties.
  • Bond/Mortgage Originator: Identify a person or company who can source finance from the banks and lending institutions and manage your portfolio of properties.(see page x for getting a finance power negotiator)
  • Insurance broker: Get upfront advice on getting house cover on your loans to prevent extra costs on your mortgage.
  • Property Inspector: Use the services of a registered property inspector who can identify defects and problem areas when buying an existing property.
  • Letting Agent/Property Manager: As your property portfolio grows, it is better to hire the services of professionals who specialise in this area, than to try and do it in your spare time.
  • Handymen: Get a list of reliable plumbers, electricians, and maintenance experts who can give you service when you need it most.

    Select your investment strategy with the help of your team. Set your goals for the next year, five years and twenty years. Then break them down into daily, weekly and monthly steps. Now get going with your first investment. Be willing to learn from your team on an on-going basis. Also assess your team members from time to time. With every property investment you will learn something new. It is a process. No-one has ever achieved success without a few setbacks along the way. One of the secrets of success is to take the time to learn from your mistakes.

    Recommended Reading:

    Real Estate Riches - Dolf de Roos
    21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership - John Maxwell
    Failing Forward - John Maxwell

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