On this page you will find some of our extensive client client success stories. Please visit our client testimonials page to read our client testimonials.
Keep an eye on this page as we add additional client success stories from time-to-time!
Please feel free to read some (or all) of them, and if you have any questions please contact one of our Property Investment Advisers to be put in contact with any of these clients.
When Kate and Jon arrived in Australia in 2006 they were ready to invest in their future and were bombarded with a bewildering array of opinions about how best to do this. One salesman would encourage them to buy "off plan" whilst another promoted the "subdivide and redevelop" idea. All were promises of great wealth and untold riches. They too could be "property millionaires" in 5 minutes. The couple were sceptical about all these schemes and continued researching options whilst attending many property investment seminars, reading books and monitoring the markets. They readily admit that there was a certain amount of procrastination going on too because it was just so hard to know which way to turn.
Both being naturally cautious they had heard many horror stories of people who had lost their life savings to unscrupulous spruikers. Initially they paid for a 'wealth coaching' scheme which proved to be completely unsuitable and they discovered that they'd spent a lot of money being told what they already knew. This disappointing experience further fuelled their scepticism regarding investment planning. It was at a property expo in Sydney that they first heard Margaret Lomas speak and she struck a chord with them both. What she said just seemed common sense somehow.
It was to be another few months before Kate heard Margaret speak again and they then made an appointment with their local Destiny office. Cautious as ever, Kate and Jon went to the initial meeting with Chris Sedgmen. They were determined not to be talked into some get-richquick scheme but listened while Chris explained the strategy. Encouraged by his enthusiasm and knowledge they discussed the pros and cons, signed up and attended the Destiny training course a couple of weekends later. It was a real relief to finally get started.
After attending this EPE course with other likeminded people they began to understand how the Destiny program worked. They loved learning how to find good areas and good properties for themselves and realised how much you could get out of it if you were prepared to work at it. Kate began researching potential rental properties in earnest. Chris was an invaluable resource and help and made the process both enjoyable and relatively painless. Working within a Destiny property action team was enormously encouraging. Group members provided mutual support and information was freely shared. There's a lot of negativity and resistance out there in the world, so having this support network was a huge plus. Eventually even scary concepts such as buying a property sight unseen became accepted and this helped to dispel the fear of the unknown.
Three months after joining Destiny, Kate & Jon bought their first IP - a brand new 3 bedroom house in Raymond Terrace outside Newcastle. Having done all the research and followed Margaret's 20 questions religiously and with Chris's support they felt confident that they had found the right property in the right area. A 4 bedroom house in Ballarat followed 2 months later and they soon began to realize fully that they had found a system which made sense and worked for them.
A couple of months later, in June 2011, Kate came across a little town called Emerald, which seemed to tick all the boxes. Having been inundated earlier that year, many other investors seemed fearful of these areas that had been flooded. Undeterred Kate spoke to everyone in Australia who had ever been to Emerald, people who lived there, the council, property managers etc and looked carefully for properties on the market that had not been flooded. 6 weeks later they settled on a 2 bedroom unit with a sitting tenant and a rental return of 8%. The lease is up for renewal later this year and a sizeable increase is on the cards. Kate will happily argue with anyone who will listen that Emerald is not a mining town, but 'mining-influenced'. Even before the property market up there went crazy a few months ago, the past decade has seen a solid annual growth average of 11%, that did not seem risky to her. Kate's fourth purchase, April 2012, was a 3 bedroom unit in Gladstone and she continues to see Queensland as a state of opportunity though it's getting harder to find good cash flow properties.
As they continue on in their acquisition phase Kate and Jon are still very much involved with Destiny and continue to work with Chris as their finance broker and chief most important person. Kate likes to refer to him as the other most important man in her life. Kate's new job and Jon's end-of-year accounts will consolidate their borrowing power and their next goal is to purchase two more properties before October. Both agree that joining Destiny was one of the best decisions they have made in recent years. Good properties do not fall into your lap - you have to learn to go and find them. They have accepted that success does not come without hard work, dedication and the willingness to read through reams of Council Minutes at 11pm when all you really want to do is have a nice glass of wine and watch reruns of Escape to the Country.
- All wealth creation systems require dedication and hard work. Be prepared to commit the time to do the research.
- Never be afraid to ask as many questions as you need to. You get over the fear of sounding like an idiot pretty quickly. There are too many questions too important not to ask.
- Buying a property sight unseen in an area you may not know is very doable as long as you have some good property managers you can talk to and you ask all the right questions.
- Stick to your strategy, listen to good advice and remember it's a business. Leave the emotions behind.
- There's no such thing as the perfect property. If you wait for it you'll never buy one. If the first property isn't right or you miss out then there will be plenty more. Stop stalling and do it.
We were not so different from so many other couples, our boys turned into men, found jobs, fell in love and did all of the other things that as parents we hope our children grow up to do. Strangely enough the success of our parenting placed us in a position where we had more money than strategy and financially we had stalled. In a way it was easier when we had all of the expenses that come with raising a family. We had more income than bills and the years spent focusing on providing a good life for our children left us unprepared for focusing on providing a safe retirement for ourselves. We were not unlike a dog chasing a car down the street, what does the dog do when it finally catches one?
When we first started looking for Investment Strategies my husband and I had very different views. He is considered with his ideas on investing money (Superannuation and Cash) and I was more inclined to a view on property. We met with many different advisors, accountants, researched ourselves, had a lot of discussion (which became known as "Board Meetings"), put together a cashflow projection. The cashflow made us face some very confronting realities. Once we had faced the "beast" of retirement planning we knew that property would become one of the key foundations of our 3 to 5 year plan.
"You can not find positive cash flow property in Australia" one accountant told me. Just as well he said that because to me that was the ultimate challenge. My first step of defiance was to book into a Hotspotting Seminar with Terry Ryder, which is where I first met Jim from the Sydney Destiny office. With the support of the Sydney Destiny team and their assistance with getting finance (thanks Mel) we have purchased 9 properties in Rockhampton, Gunnedah, Goulburn, Whyalla ("now Margaret, no groaning") and Ceduna plus our retirement property in Kiama. The retirement property breaks even and the rest of the portfolio yields an average return of 9.3%. I did tell the accountant about these results, strangley enough he did not want to continue our conversation.
As late as last night we were discussing a purchase in Port Augusta, I looked over at my husband who after the conversation seemed to be laughing at our constant research, discussions about location, unemployment rates, proposed infrastructure and rental yields. Maybe he was crying, hard to tell sometimes. Either way we both believe that the advice from Jim and his team has certainly given us the opportunity move past the "beast" of retirement planning and have control over our financial future. The problem now is not how to find a cash flow positive property but how many should we buy and how quickly can we pay them off.
So to Jim, Mel and Tracy from us, THANK YOU.
I heard Margaret speak in March 2003 at the Investment Expo in Melbourne and made an appointment to find out if Destiny was suitable for me. My wife and I joined Destiny that month as we felt Destiny ticked all the right boxes for us. We had our home paid off and we had all this equity with no debt and we needed a financial plan to set us up for retirement.
Back in those days, Realestate.com.au had only just come online so it was a learning curve for everyone involved. It is so much easier to make informed decisions using the technology that is on offer today, when you know what formula to follow. We used our equity and acquired 6 properties within a 2 year period, then 8 properties in a 5 year period and 4 more properties from 2007 to 2011 to give a total of 18 properties. We have since sold one of our properties, the only dud we bought. We chose commercial properties for the cash flow and residential for the growth. The maximum we spent on any property was a commercial property for $460,000 which had a 10% return and all the rest were purchased for around $300,000 or much less.
These are made up of:
- 3 x 2 Brm units in Hay, NSW
- 3 Brm house in Kalgoorlie, WA
- 4 shops in Tamworth, NSW
- Set of 12 Storage sheds in Hay, NSW and
- Set of 10 Storage sheds in Deniliquin, NSW
- 4 Brm house in Deniliquin, NSW
- 4 Brm house in Springfield Lakes, QLD
- 3 Brm unit in Carrara, QLD
- 2 x units in Logan, QLD
- 2 Brm unit in Brooklyn, VIC
- 2 Brm unit in Portland, VIC
We are in the process of purchasing another commercial property at present, setting it up on a Self Managed Super Fund as we near retirement. We have achieved all of this on a modest combined income. We could not have reached this level of investment without the help and guidance of the Destiny Team.
- Purchase older houses near a new estate in large regional areas.
- Diversify your property portfolio to fit your particular goals.
- Keep in touch with your Property Manager so you get a good rapport with them so they know that you are an interested landlord. This way you can potentially nip any possible problems in the bud before they become major issues.
Peter and Therese Ryan were first introduced to Destiny in 2007 after hearing so many good reports. Peter works as a contractor with the advertising group Local Directories and Therese is a part-time licensed conveyancer at Fishburn Watson O'Brien in Coffs Harbour.
We moved to Coffs Harbour for a more relaxed life style after a major health concern for Peter. Consequently our employment incomes dropped significantly and we needed to rekindle our interest in property to secure our future and improve our short and medium term circumstances. We decided to contact Destiny's Virtual Branch to get started on the road to financial freedom. This was made possible by the new communications technology the Virtual branch offered to support us at a distance.
At first we were very frustrated as it seemed almost impossible to find a positive cash flow property except in areas that did not come close to meeting the 20 Questions. When we finally found a good property- we hesitated when it came to making a decision. Buying the first property a few months later was probably the hardest but best learning experience we had. Thankfully with Mark's continued encouragement and assistance, we learnt to refine our research strategies and became more confident in making the next move. Destiny has always been completely professional, impartial and ethical in all their dealings with us. Today we own our own home as well as 6 investment properties and they are all neutral or positive cash flow with good capital growth.
We are amazed at how quickly we have built up our property portfolio and look forward to acquiring our 7th property in the not too distant future. We would recommend that anybody considering property investing take on board the following tips/advice:
1. Always read and research as much as you can - ensure you cover the "20 Must Ask Questions".
2. Surround yourself with likeminded people.
3. Have a team of professional people you have full confidence in i.e. solicitor/conveyancer, accountant and financial broker - they will be there to support and guide you through the process.
4. Start investing sooner rather than later -the more time you have in the market the more "time" can weave its magic -we wish now we had started years ago.
My name is Julie Hope and with my husband Martin Bigmore, we were first introduced to the Destiny 'concept' in mid-2007. A good friend handed me one of Margaret's books - How to make your money last as long as you do and I read it from cover to cover in one sitting. Immediately I knew that Margaret's common sense and safe approach to investing in the property market was for me. At that stage we already had two investment properties in our hometown, but this was more through dumb luck than good management, and we had no future plan or exit strategy. With only Martin working, money was tight and we felt like our investment dream was quickly spiralling out of control. Our debt and the repayments were keeping me awake at night and the concept of positive cash flow was unheard of.
Upon meeting Tim and Ellie at Destiny Mawson we soon realised - you don't know what you don't know - and although it was a struggle financially, we signed up to have a financial report done. The report and the possibilities contained within it changed our life and financial future.
Challenges: Although Martin attended the focus groups and 'got educated', we sat on our hands for 18 months with the excuse that life was too busy...that was until we attended one of Margaret's seminars. Someone in the audience made a comment about not having enough time to work, raise a family and do investment property research. Martin and I felt the same way, but it was Margaret's response about how she always made time to search the internet despite raising five kids and running Destiny that motivated us into action. If she could do it, then we had no excuse. We were in our 40s, had two teenage boys and financial freedom was our goal.
It was mid-2009 and it was an invitation to participate in a Property Action Team (PAT) group that helped us take a leap of faith...buying remotely. It scared me to death, but we were able to make informed purchasing decisions by discussing the process with my fellow PAT members, crunching the numbers and setting goals. Within months we had purchased our 'first' Destiny property (Sept 2009) followed by a second two months later. In less than two years, and due to Tim and Ellie's encouragement, we are about to settle on property number seven (July 2011).
In addition to our own home we currently have two onebedroom apartments in Canberra, one two bedroom unit in Albury, NSW, one two bedroom unit in Branxton, NSW, one three bedroom house in Bridgewater, TAS, one four bedroom townhouse in Bathurst, NSW and one three bedroom house in Churchill, VIC.
Tips and advice:
- Make realistic annual goals and write them down
- Achieve those goals through monthly action steps
- Treat each purchase as a business decision
- Negotiate on everything
- Stay motivated by networking
- Surround yourself with professionals - property managers, an accountant and financial adviser - and if you are lucky, you will have your own Tim and Ellie!
Date joined: June 2007
Why we joined: As John came to near the end of his 20+ year career in the military, we started researching and reading many property investment books and magazines. We came across Margaret Lomas' books and read them from cover to cover. We did Margaret's risk profile and determined that we were in the low risk/long term category and that property would be the best fit for our financial future. We were fortunate enough to have purchased our home before the boom in the late-90s. Together with John's military 'golden handshake' we were able to capitalise on the equity in our residential property to re-invest. We became a member of Destiny Virtual Branch in 2007. We currently have 6 properties, including our residential home.
- Two three-bedroom houses in Horsham, Vic
- One three-bedroom townhouse Newcombe/Geelong, Vic
- One two-bedroom unit in Mt Druitt, NSW
- One three-bedroom house Orange, NSW.
It took us nearly 18 months to purchase our first property as we kept over analysing our decision-making process - rather than just jump in with a 'leap of faith'.
What were the key motivators?
We are both in our mid-forties, with two teenage sons, and want to retire by the time we are 55 years of age. We are of the opinion that superannuation alone is not going to see us through our retirement years. In addition, we have been observing our 'baby boomer' family members nearing their retirement age and the strategies they have or have not put in place.
Difficulties with bank valuations: Recently we applied for a loan for an investment property and our own home needed to be re-valued. From the previous valuation we had gone down by $15,000? Even after disputing the valuation and providing examples of other similar properties, the bank still went with the valuation provided by the independent valuer. We ended up not going through with the loan. Four months on, we again applied for an investment loan. In the meantime, the bank had implemented a new computer system used to credit check current and future loans. The computer rejected our credit check, until human intervention came into play. The bank then happily used our original valuation of our own home at the higher value. We often get asked "aren't you worried about losing your home?" We happily reply that we are able to sleep easy at night. We are secure in the fact that we have followed the Destiny 20 Question process for investing and have conducted due diligence in selecting the right professionals (e.g. Destiny Adviser, Accountants, Property Managers, Solicitors etc.).
How we research:
We research our properties using the skills that we have learnt from the Destiny focus groups that we have attended.
Tips and advice for Destiny clients:
I heard Margaret Lomas once state "everything is negotiable." We now live by this rule. Do your homework on selecting the right property manager who is there to look after you best interest. We often get feedback from property managers stating that we are easy to deal with tenant requests. Each request is assessed as to whether it is a "want" or a "need". Attend every property workshop to keep motivated, network and exchange ideas. If we walk away with one or two ideas, then it was all worth it!