Mark Hamilton is a Residential Investment Specialist at Tommys Real Estate in Wellington. We talked to him recently regarding the current market.
Years selling investment property in Wellington: 14
Which areas did investors want to buy in when you started?
Primarily areas on the city fringe with easy access and good sun exposure.
Which areas are in the most demand now?
It hasn’t changed, the main focus is still on the city fringe areas that have easy access and good sun. Though now more investors are also looking for properties with some kind of twist or with opportunities to add value. At the moment, large sections are generally considered a thing of the past, however sub-dividable sections are highly sought after. The geographic constraints of Wellington means that general common sense properties with good attributes are always in demand.
What are the early signs you see of an area becoming popular with buyers?
Usually when the local village becomes a more popular place to visit - Berhampore is a current classic example. It may have been considered as the poor cousin of Island Bay in the past, but now it's more popular, especially with first and second home buyers.
Do the investors who own the greatest number of units have specific niches they stick to?
Generally speaking yes - although having different types of residential properties tends to insulate investors from the vagaries of the market.
What are the best ways to add value to a rental property?
Increase the rents! Better presentation will lead to higher rents. Ensure tenancies are married into the best letting timeframes - generally speaking the January-Early March period is the best time. You should also add another bedroom if possible - although then you tend to get different types of tenants - more groups than couples.
Have you any tips for first time investors?
Buy a good property at market price and use your common sense.
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