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My journey ............

Discussion in 'Emigration Matters [no rep deductions]' started by manuka, Oct 8, 2011.

  1. manuka

    manuka Alfrescian Old Timer

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    i moved to auckland 7 yrs ago.... Got a job, but was an entry job, the salary was not as good as i was in singapore and was not commensurate with my skills and experience. It was okay as i tried to get more local experience and at the same time familiar with the country.

    We have some savings brought from singapore and was able to invest in some properties. Bought a family home which we still live in now and 2 investment properties.

    My son was born here last year at the government hospital. The after birth care was quiet good and free medical care till he is 16. My wife took a year off from work and finally decided not to go back.

    Career wide, there is no much prospect. Received a lot of rejection letters for jobs that commensurate with my qualification but not my experience. So, i finally settled with the entry job at average income and with my wife's income, we were okay.

    After my son was born, i decided to take time off and spend sometimes with him and rely soley on our rental / investment income and during these time i gave some thoughts to my future and our parents ( back home)

    i am in my early 40s and would like to have another run with my career and it is difficult to settle in with entry job and not using much of my ability. i decided to head back to asia and to prepare myself, i took up a post graduate studies for self improving and to up date myself with current developments.

    We will be selling our family home and with the proceeds to buy 2 more investment properties and ideally, would like to keep all our investment properties intake and let property manager to manage them. We still consider auckland as home, just that the carreer opportunity is not there and we don't want to spend our productive years on a retiring mode.

    I don't know what future will hold, but i want to give myself and my family another run and to spend more time with my parents back home and let them spend more time with their grandson too.

    Although i didn't achieve much in the last 7 yrs but i do learn a lot about life and to appreciate little things in life...
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2011
  2. neddy

    neddy Alfrescian (Inf)

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    Hi manuka

    Thanks for your story. Would you have preferred to remain in Singapore, on hindsight? Or has moving to NZ given you a different perspective of "living" rather than "finding money"?

    At least, for Gen X, you still can detour. The alternative is staying where you are.

    7-year itch does not just refer to marriages, it refers to human limits. That is perhaps why the 3-month long service leave is given after 7 years on the job. (In some sector, it is 10 years) People do take this long service leave to seek out what they want to do or to try out alternative job, some continue with a 1-year unpaid leave to try out the new career. (Eg I know this person who decided to go into working with robots, he bought a Lego MindStorm kit and join a interest group)

    Another colleague is back to uni to finish his degree. One past colleague moved to Melbourne and worked for a non-profit organisation-but doing something that she always loved doing.

    Basically, I am stuck as well. I want to move up the corporate ladder but the older babyboomers are not bloody retiring. The easy money days threw the boomers' caution (and their savings) into the wind. The financial crisis caught them offguard, now they regret not staying on with their defined benefit retirement plans and have to work into their 70s to maintain their expensive lifestyles.

    I am waiting to go part-time and will eventually take up another role to fill this gap. I have a career coach guiding me.

    All the best in your journey.

    *** I forgot to add, I know how it feels like working at entry level. I had been there before. There is nothing like an economic boom to add or shift the musical chairs, so I was lucky. I caught the "wind" in my direction and moved. Not once, not twice but 3 times. ***
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2011
  3. axe168

    axe168 Alfrescian Old Timer

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    Shit ! I've found my shadow ! We have almost the same situation and I am trying out the market in JB, KL and Singapore. My wife may try Singapore in Dec. Her previous MNC already offer her a consultancy role for 3 mths.

    The thorny issue is about work visa and returning CPF.

    Haiz, the PAP govt is preventing us from contributing to the society. I guess they prefer China-nese and India-ness..
     
  4. neddy

    neddy Alfrescian (Inf)

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    I thought you are in the most desirable State in the whole of Australia.

    For me,

    Pros
    Income : a lot more than what I dare imagine.
    House : 750 sq m in federation style in a desirable inner city suburb.
    Retirement planning : In good hands
    Family : Marrying a fantastic woman this summer
    Food : authentic Malaysian, Singapore, Korean and of course Japanese. Love the seafood here.

    Cons
    Work : Sick of that arrogant South African nigger director, the younger women dressed like sluts. They are here for fun not work. The men are here to feed their ego, usually into their 2nd or 3rd wife, very unAustralian, unfair, racist, petty - I suspect they are the same species as Enron Corporate.

    House : Getting more expensive to maintain. Wish I can get cheap labour like in Singapore or USA.

    Food : Hope to eat more Singapore variety. The HK food taste the same everywhere. Dim Sum variety not as good. But the best HK egg tarts are in Australia, not HK. relatively expensive.

    Healthcare: I hate co-payment and the wait! A bit of a hit or miss with specialists,at least I get to choose the non south asians, even if it means waiting. Lucky, the healthcare people here more personal.

    Still, there is something missing.

    ----------- I do not want to hijack this thread so I add some comments here -------------

    What is missing?

    1. So, I have some achievements here, but I see my peers leaving ("upgrade" to Melbourne/Sydney, return to Singapore, do not want to maintain contact), so it can feel a bit strange.

    2. The risk that this comfortable lifestyle will not last because I may not be so lucky the next time round should I take a fall.

    3. The yearning to take up a cause - to be a nosy busybody. Eg SAVE THE CATS, PANDA, ELEPHANT!!
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2011
  5. manuka

    manuka Alfrescian Old Timer

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    Thanks for your comments, neddy & Axe168 and i am not alone in my journey.
    On hindsight, i do not regret moving to akl, at that time my move were motivated by: 1) wanting a change and break from my works 2) to have family 3) to preserve my capital and invest in real property to hedge against inflation and felt akl was a good place to do that.

    The entry level job was okay initially, it was mainly admin and customers service and not using much of your head, but customers can be demanding and litigious. Nature of the job is like out of sight out of mind scenario and enjoy your weekend and face it again on monday and looking forward to weekend again. down side is low prospect of climbing up the ladder as a lot of locals are in the line waiting and little career satisfaction. it was like recycle bottle, most would wear off and replaceable in 2-3 yrs and at the bottom of food chain. That is one side of me, mixing with disgruntled workmates and hearing their disatisfaction and many of them have little choice to move on. As the saying goes, to the jews, i become jews and there is no much intellectual stimulation and slowly i felt myself being supressed to become one of them.

    The other side of me was more alive - In 2008 after the collapse of Leeman brothers ( when dow was around 6500), i took the risk of pouring all my capital into stock market and made some gains along the way and recycled all my gains and capital into real property and managed to bargain for some good deals. All these properties are now mortgage free.

    That was a one off event and i don't think i will want to take this kind of risk again after the birth of my son.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2011
  6. Aussie Prick

    Aussie Prick Alfrescian Old Timer

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    I would not feel too bad about the job situation. We have undergone an unprecedented worldwide structural change, so many in your position feel the same way. These are turbulent times, with fortunes being generated and lost on a daily basis, companies might be cash-rich but dont feel the incentive to hire. In my firm its like we are all a part of a money raiding machine. Gone are the days when we went to work for a salary. Times have changed.

    At least you have your rental income - this is something no company can take away from you and although tenants can move out, at least in a tight rental market there you have a stable, consistent source of income.

    And that is something.
     
  7. neddy

    neddy Alfrescian (Inf)

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    Provided you can get the right tenants.

    With rental so high in Perth, my tenants are getting sub-tenants to help cover the rent and these subs are not checked out by the property managers.
    In comes the pet, an old leaky car and partying.

    In one case,
    Worse to come - the main tenant went bankrupt and moved back to live with mom. Earned extra money from more sub tenants who turned the house upside down.

    Worst of the worse: The occupiers ran road after working holiday visa expired, owed main tenant money. The bond money could not cover the damage and re-carpeting, tenant is bankrupt. Out-of-pocket repairs fees claimed from insurance. But time spent by owner and property manager to address all these not costed!

    WANTED: Chinese tenants who just want to rent a place (not buy) to keep their expensive loots from money raiding in China. Can find any? :(
     
  8. Ash007

    Ash007 Alfrescian Old Timer

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    Mate, you consider resettling in Aussieland?
     
  9. manuka

    manuka Alfrescian Old Timer

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    At the mement i manage the properties myself. i am selective with my tenants as rental market is tight in AKL. Do the lawn myself in a way to show my present and keeping an eye on the tenants. I prefer to use fixed term tenancy for 6 months initially and renewable if tenant is good.

    i specify in the tenancy agreement - no sublet, maximum nos of people 3 etc as it is against the law for overcrowed house for health and safety reason.

    If one is serious about property investment, good to join the local landlord association and get some support from members and referral for responsible property manager. i probably will have to find responsible property manager if i no longer manage them myself.

    Ash007 - i did consider aussieland but i am out of action ( being too long on entry level job) for some times and probably will have to start all over again. i am into some studies to self improve myself and up dating myself with current developments and hopefully will make myself more marketable in asia.
     
  10. axe168

    axe168 Alfrescian Old Timer

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    Dear Manuka, like I said I can see my shadow... We have almost the same scenario... I have 3 properties too. 1 fully paid, 1 for 60% equity & another million dollar property at 25% equity. I achieved all these for a short 7 yrs in Australia. Back in SG, I lived in Jurong (SGD 250k apartment only), now I live in a good suburb at zero tax for primary - best of all, I pay no body corporate rates :)

    I was lucky when I arrived, I got promoted 3 times within 1.5 yrs and currently, I am a small mgr in a big organization. Due to my dad's poor health, I may need to return to spend some time with him.. At the same time it wouldn't harm to work and play at the same time. Hopefully, it all goes well, if I can get a job in Sg or KL. And when I return to Melbourne, I hope to be a full time employer. I need large capital to start a firm.

    Oh well, if I can't make it.. I'll simply retire in a simple manner.
     
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2011
  11. manuka

    manuka Alfrescian Old Timer

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    hi axe168,

    Glad to hear you are doing so well in aust. One thing that is hanging in my head is my parents, i want to spend more time with them before it is too late... and to let them spend more time with their grandson too.
     
  12. Aussie Prick

    Aussie Prick Alfrescian Old Timer

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    its a question of management. tenancy issues do happen and can be expected. budgeting for maintenance is a must, as roofing, plumbing, electrical, etc issues arise. pre purchase inspections should leave you wit a clear picture. purchased two properties overseas professionally managed out and get reports, updates so yes these issues do occur but with a good manager, they are minimized. i have 2 properties overseas and have copies of background and credit checks on tenants manager selected. its not hard with good management, and rental returns are very good right now in certain markets. I am getting 20% right now after all expenses for example.
     
  13. neddy

    neddy Alfrescian (Inf)

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    I am quite unlucky to get a good-turned-bad tenant. With the current economic uncertainties, and high rental, the risks just get higher with tenants doing the wrong thing.

    The lease agreement I use include all those items which you mentioned.

    I complained at the body corporate AGM and now my neighbour has my contact number. She is a crazy grumpy woman who stopped my past tenants' removal trucks from entering the driveway,saying that it will spoil the pavers and damage the driveway plants.

    I stopped talking to her, but now, she initiated a direct contact with me after the bad experience. After all, she lived there. Nothing like a Stakeholder to help my cause. LOL

    I am prepared to reduce my rent to secure good tenants.
     
  14. manuka

    manuka Alfrescian Old Timer

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    there are some rules i set for myself when invest in investment property. Those rules probably mean that i won't get high return for my rents but probably will give me higher capital gain in the long run ( no capital gain tax in nz).

    1) not buying unit/ cross leased / apartment property. if can afford buy full section houses. They can be more pricy at the time of buying and measuring about 6-7 % return from rental only, which is okay. One property i split it into 2 incomes source so, it ends up having higher return.

    2) these properties when come to renting turns to attract better quality tenants, if they don't pay on time or try to do something funny on the property they will not get renewal for the tenancy and for them to get a similar property probably will mean higher rent and competing with others.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2011
  15. manuka

    manuka Alfrescian Old Timer

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    The family house i am staying may be too costly to maintain in the long run.... when the time is right, i will put it on the market and use the proceeds to buy 2 more investment property if we are heading back to asia. Still sticking to my investment rules.

    my simple calculation is in 5-8 yrs, there will be some capital appreciation in those properties as inflation is high and will continue to loom. Money will become quiet worthless by then. All the money those investment properties generate will be used to pay some maintainance, expenses, rates, taxes and surplus goes to saving.

    if i go to KL, i will rent a condo and (hopefully) self sufficient with the income i make there...... and have some holidays.

    One day, we may be returning to akl or to australia, at least, we won't have to start all over again like we first started with high property prices that suck out all our savings.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2011
  16. ZorrorroZ

    ZorrorroZ Alfrescian Old Timer

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    Been interesting and educational reading this thread. Hope you guys don't mind keeping in touch when I finally go down under and need some tips to get up on my own two feet.
     
  17. axe168

    axe168 Alfrescian Old Timer

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    Spot on Manuka ! Going for capital growth is the way to go ! I don't understand why ppl go for yield.. About 4-5% or $20k per annum.. Should the prices escalate, the profit is a sweet 100k..
     
  18. axe168

    axe168 Alfrescian Old Timer

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    My tips.. Start watching ceiling fan rotating.. Then read industry magazine.. Thereafter, spend time in research.. Finally, put your balls to the test ! Of course during the interim process, live lean and mean :)
     
  19. neddy

    neddy Alfrescian (Inf)

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    Confession time.

    The ducted multi-zone reverse cycle air-con is a cash burner. With electricity prices going up, I have to double with cheap split air-con in the living area I spent most time and my bedroom. Luckily, the shops offered free installation package because of poor retail market.

    Forget about swimming pool, need to build child proof fence and all that crap. An indoor jacuzzi works better.
     
  20. axe168

    axe168 Alfrescian Old Timer

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    Wahaha... Who cares about reputation.. It is all about sharing info and experience, dude.
     

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