Every one of us suffers from this predicament. Times exist when you get overwhelmed by a decision and you choose to not to act. Procrastination is the cause of many missed deadlines, wasted opportunities and sub-par work. Taken to the extreme, it can cause irreparable damage to your financial wellbeing.
When it comes to investing in property, there’s little room for it. The costs associated with putting off a decision to buy or sell a property or act in any other beneficial manner can be extremely steep. Since most opportunities in property investing don’t come with a note that indicates them as so, you must always act to gain.
By letting you in on some property investment advice, I hope to open your eyes to why property procrastination is keeping you poor.
Procrastinating on the buy or sell
Procrastinating on a transaction has a number of pitfalls that have dire consequences monetarily.
- Inadequate research on a property
- Poor comprehension of the contracts
- Ignoring important procedures in acquiring property
Buying an overpriced property without assessing its investment merits; being unaware that the property is legally unavailable; being struck by the amount of hidden costs in buying a home. All these can come back to bite you in the backside. However, taking prompt action or rather not procrastinating can help avert or at least mitigate these problems.
Delays eat into Capital Gains
When you delay putting your hard-earned money to work in property, it’ll almost always cost you. The property market has shown this consistently that it appreciates in value as time goes on. Consider a property bought 20 years ago in Sydney by an early investor at the market price of $233,250. Right now, the same property would be worth $1,151,565; netting the buyer a return of over $900,000. Had this hypothetical investor held back on the decision to buy for just 2 years, there return could be less by around $100,000 and for 10 years, there return would be halved. In this case, procrastination would have cost the investor more than half a million dollars in capital gains.
Waiting for “the right moment”
Waiting for “the right moment” or waiting until the market “improves” to invest are the signs of a chronic procrastinator. Timing the market is an exercise in futility. You’ll always miss the market’s best days or worse, invest at its pick and catch a falling knife, which can cut into your returns significantly. In the long term, you lose more than you gain.
It’s telling that data from CoreLogic, released in April, showed house values in Sydney were up 20% for the past year. Following such numbers, you would have expected the market to continue its steady rise but that was not the case. April 2017 saw a dip in Sydney house prices—the first since December 2015.
Growth can only be experienced when you invest consistently in the market rather than watching it from the sidelines, hoping to catch a break. To avoid such scenarios in the future, one solution would be to make periodic investments through a property investment vehicle instead of a lump sum.
Not dealing with your personal finances
As we go about our daily routines we often forget the importance of keeping our finances in order. This tardiness has a direct opportunity cost. Property investing requires sufficient money management skills on a personal level in that without them you risk running out of money during an investment. There are lots of bills, taxes for which being late is tantamount to financial penalties, such as charges and interest costs that will cost you dearly. This doesn’t help your case when it comes to lenders, who will view you as a higher-risk borrower, and charge you a higher interest rate to compensate for this perceived greater risk.
The result is thousands of dollars spent in higher interest costs, a steep price that you could have done away with had you not procrastinated on a couple of bill payments.
Time is of the essence and decisions have to be made and actions taken to make it in property investing. In this regard, swift action should replace procrastination, since it’s probably crippling your chances of being financially independent.