NEWS & INSIGHTS

As home finance experts, we love keeping Australians like you up to speed on finance news, home advice and tips to grow your wealth.

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    Mortgage defaults improve, but highly geared borrowers vulnerable

    by Your Mortgage Magazine ( www.yourmortgage.com.au ) The number of mortgage arrears declined across Australiaduring 2009 thanks to record low interest rates and a resilient economy, according to a new survey. The Fitch Ratings report on Australian Mortgage Delinquency by Postcode 30 September...

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    Growth Areas Infrastructure Contribution - will you have to pay?

    by Craig Whatman and Jack Wang, Pitcher Partners What is Growth Areas Infrastructure Contribution? The Growth Areas Infrastructure Contribution (GAIC) is a new tax which the Victorian Government is seeking to impose on developable land within Melbourne's Urban Growth Boundary (UGB). Types of...

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    Moving house? How to make a furniture-free move

    By Alex Honey, Sterling Interiors Upsizing or downsizing and don't know what to do about furniture? Including it as a package with your property sale might be the smartest move. Sea', tree' or me' changes, new arrivals or emptying the nest can all be the catalyst for radical changes in the type,...

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    Investment Property Home Loans

    Which performs better, a house or a unit? by Alex Henderson, Prosper Group Are you thinking about buying an investment property and are not sure whether to buy a house or unit? Many investment property analysts argue that it is the underlying value of the land which drives the capital growth of...

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    Fixed Rate vs Variable Rate Home Loans

    by Sam White, Executive Director There has been a marked rise in enquiries from home owners about fixing their mortgage rates since the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) began raising interest rates. The RBA's 0.25 per cent hike yesterday will likely mean further increases to variable and fixed...

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    First home buyer incentive scheme update

    By Greville Pabst - CEO & Director, WBP Property Valuers Cuts to first home owner incentives were made in October; the first of a two phase reduction to the time limited boost that saw grants fall by $3,500 from the generous $14,000 on offer for first time buyers of established homes. Grants...

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    The future of the Australian Tax System

    By Arthur Kassos CPA Come December, the Henry Review is to be considered by the Treasurer. TheReview will decide upon prospective tax recommendations that will be adapted into Australia's Future Tax System, bringing us into the 21st century and helping enhance Australia's economic and social...

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    Tax Tips

    byArthur Kassos, CPA If you're eligible for the education tax refund but you don't have to lodge a tax return you can complete either of the following options: Item T6 and other compulsory labels on the 2009 Individual Tax Return (similar to what you do for a franking credit refund) Education...

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    Why is now a good time to buy a Sydney investment property?

    by Chris White, Prosper Group Many property investors have always regarded buying a Sydney Investment Property as one of the best and quickest methods to build personal wealth. Let's take a look at why. 1. There is good potential for capital growth, generating equity and allowing for further...

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    National property update

    Greville Pabst, CEO & Director, WBP Property Valuers Following a substantial slump in the Australian property market in late 2008, auction clearance rates have bounced back. Figures show that national clearance rates have witnessed a positive trend since June, a welcome shift from considerab...

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    Combat rate rises

    by John Kolenda, Executive Director Loan Market Group Homeowners should take steps to minimise the impact of the upward movement in interest rates. The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) increased the official cash rate by 0.25 per cent yesterday, andmany forecasters believe rates will rise up to...

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    Promising property returns on the horizon

    by Alex Henderson, Prosper Group Low interest rates, solid growth in rents and housing shortages are evident in most Australian property markets. As affordability for many property buyers improves along with the outlook for the economy, property buyers are looking to purchase well positioned...

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    Rates will increase in big steps

    by John Kolenda, Executive Director Yesterday's decision by the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) comes as no surprise with most economists expecting interest rates to remain on hold, as we wait for a continuation of the good news we are currently hearing about the local and international...