Terry Ryder is the founder of hotspotting.com.au.

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Terry Ryder

14 November 2012

Whatever you do, don't become a savvy property investor. Stay square: Terry Ryder

Whatever you do, don't become a savvy property investor. Stay square: Terry Ryder

 This is a warning to property consumers. You need to be aware that scary creatures are prowling the Australian landscape and blazing a path to wealth and glory. 

These are the (drum roll) “savvy investors”. You need to know that they’re out there, and they’re smarter than you and me, and the only thing we can do is watch what they do and try to imitate them, without treading on their toes or getting in their way. 

I’ve been reading about savvy investors for ages, and at first I thought they were a strange genre of people who were investing money in highly seasoned smoked sausages, otherwise known as saveloys. Why, I wondered, would anyone want to be a savvy investor? 

But then I learnt that a savvy investor is one who is extremely well-informed. Someone who really knows what they’re doing, compared with the unsavvy masses. 

Savvy investors distinguish themselves by their individual behavior. They never buy things, they snap them up (I’ve always wanted to do that but don’t have the talent). Everything they buy is a bargain, and most of what they do results in windfall gains. And journalists always write about them, whereas they never bother with the non-savvy. 

So, having learnt that the best way to get rich is to study rich people, I decided to study what savvy investors were doing. 

And guess what? I discovered that savvy investors are mostly idiots. I didn’t see that coming. 

I read on news.com.au that savvy investors were buying off-the-plan apartments in inner-city Brisbane. This struck me as extremely unsavvy, especially as the stated reason for buying new product was that you get better depreciation benefits. I assumed savvy buyers would make purchase decisions based on the prospects for capital gains – but new apartments in inner-city areas seldom deliver. 

Then I read that savvy investors were snapping up apartments close to the Sydney CBD. As they were buying in suburbs with capital growth records that are among the worst in the nation, that further unsettled my faith in emulating the savvy. 

My confusion grew when I read that savvy investors were “turning to real estate agents for advice”. 

 

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