Larry Schlesinger | 26 November 2012

Property investment proceeds not an alternative to full-time job: Australian buy-to-let landlord survey

Property investment proceeds not an alternative to full-time job: Australian buy-to-let landlord survey

Only one in 20 property investors is making enough money from his or her rental portfolio to no longer have to work full time, according to a landlord survey carried out by research consultancy group BDRC Jones Donald.

Based on an online survey of 500 Australians who own one or more rental properties, it found that just 6% of respondents earn a profitable full-time living from rents paid by their tenants.

Just over a third (35%) derive income from their rental properties to supplement their full-time income, while a quarter (26%) break even on rental activity, and just under a third (32%) make a small loss.

While the report does not delve into the actual dollar earnings of the landlords who are making a living off their rental yields, it does reveal that the average property value for those making a profitable full-time living is $915,000, with these landlords holding a portfolio with an average of 4.3 properties, equating to total average value of $3.9 million.

 "Of these people, the average household income is $111,000 before tax," says a spokesperson for BDRC Jones Donald.

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The most recent statistics from the Australian Tax Office (ATO) for the 2009-2010 tax year show that the majority of property investors own just one investment property, indicating that it is not a full-time occupation for most.

Of the 1.7 million individuals who reported net rental income from rental property in the 2009-2010 tax year, 73% own just one rental property.

The ATO figures also show that 63.4% of property investors with net rental income reported a taxable loss (net rental income less than zero) from their rental property.

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