Buying An Investment Property In Brisbane? Here Are Our Inspector’s Top Tips!
Whether it’s your first time buying an investment property in Brisbane or you’re a seasoned investor, one thing is for certain – a building inspection is a must every time.
Taking the plunge in property investment can be exciting and daunting. Be confident that you’re making the best possible investment with a thorough inspection of the property you intend to buy.
You’ve researched Brisbane’s property market, growth areas and rental returns, and have considered budget and location. A building and pest inspection is the final piece to the property investment puzzle guaranteed to give you buyer confidence.
Here are some top tips from our experienced property inspection team!
Why buy an investment property in Brisbane?
Brisbane has kissed its country-town reputation goodbye transforming itself into a buzzing metropolis nestled along the Brisbane River. With its sub-tropical climate, affordable living, lush parklands, reliable transport system and easy access to premier holiday destinations, Brisbane has become a highly sought after city for property investment.
Brisbane is home to a vibrant arts and music scene, gourmet dining experiences, high-end fashion and world-class education providers.
If you’ve started searching for property in the Brisbane market, you will have found everything from traditional Queenslanders and post-war homes, to modern homes, townhouses and units.
What to look for when buying an investment property in Brisbane
Location, location, location
Choosing the right suburb to invest in is critical. Think carefully about the demographic you hope to attract. Inner-city living is popular among young professionals and university students, who want to live close to work or study, while Brisbane’s outer suburbs appeal to families and established couples.
If you have your eye on long-term renters who will treat your investment property like it is their own home, you should be targeting well-established couples and families. Start your property search in family-friendly suburbs that have quality child care centres, schools, access to main roads and reliable public transport. Suburbs close to universities will likely attract younger and possibly short-term tenants, who may or may not be as considerate of your property as long-term tenants.
Keep in mind that much of Brisbane was affected during the 2011 floods and was hit with another blow during the 2012 storms. Many houses suffered considerable interior and structural damage, while house exteriors and roofing also took a beating.
Only a qualified building inspector can ensure there is no residual damage from these events and give you bargaining power if significant issues are uncovered. A building inspector can also advise on any subsidence, hazardous tree locations, rising damp, moisture retention or other unforeseen concerns.
Don’t let first impressions fool you
Sparkling kitchen counter tops, a renovated bathroom and a fresh coat of paint could have you falling head over heels for a home. It doesn’t matter how new or beautifully-renovated your potential investment is, there could still be underlying issues not obvious to the naked eye. Only a detailed building and pest inspection can assure you that the property you intend to buy is structurally sound and free of termites and pests. If you’re considering a renovated property, enquire about council approvals to ensure all home improvements and extensions were conducted above board.
Be clever about the type of house you invest in
If you’re planning to buy an investment property in Brisbane, it’s wise to steer clear of ‘fixer-upper’ homes, or homes that will require continued maintenance. Old Queenslander and weatherboard homes will need repainting over time, while you could also be faced with lead paint or asbestos. There is the potential for repair and replacement of floorboards and external stair treads, while older homes should be checked for plumbing drainage and faulty wiring.
The last thing you want is to purchase an investment property, only to be stung a few months later with hefty repair bills. It is important to keep your eye out for properties that will withstand the wear and tear of multiple or long-term renters.
Consider the property features
Look for properties that offer something extra that will appeal to a wider demographic. It may be a double-lock up garage, ensuite or separate downstairs living area.
One-storey homes are often popular with older couples, or families with young children keen to avoid stairs.
A swimming pool or spa may seem like a major drawcard, but keep in mind the upkeep and maintenance required.
Should you invest in a house or unit?
Units offer an affordable entry-point to the property market and give you potential to grow your investment profile quickly. Inner-city units and those close to education providers could offer a good return with consistent renters.
If you like the idea of a body corporate managing the insurance and maintenance of your investment, then a unit or townhouse could be the right choice for you. Be wary however of larger complexes with potential for significant maintenance costs. Ensure you investigate the body corporate carefully, including any sinking fund and previous maintenance.
Whether you decide to invest in a house or unit depends on your budget, the demographic you want to target, how much maintenance you’re prepared to do and what will work best for you.
Secure a building and pest inspection before you buy
Protect yourself against costly risks and give yourself bargaining power with a detailed building and pest inspection. Your potential buy may look like a gem at first glance, but on closer inspection there could be underlying issues that will come back to bite you. You want to make money from your investment property, not lose it!
Being informed of any issues before you buy will allow you to negotiate the house price with the seller. This could mean a reduction in price or the seller repairing the issue before settlement.
If you are in the market for buying an investment property in Brisbane, a thorough building and pest inspection is vital. Qualified and experienced, with detailed Brisbane suburb knowledge, Action Property Inspections inspectors will give you all the information you need to make the right investment decision.