Saturday, September 28, 2013

Property Education Event - packed house - masses of value!

The Ark property event on Thursday was awesome.

Chris , Paul and Myles gave a clear view of  what you need to do when buying property, that  can often be confusing and time consuming.

It is clear that in Sydney, we are experiencing record clearance rates and strong demand for properties – both as a home and for investment, which  is forcing people to act faster which often results in mistakes.

This seminar, identified the  important aspects you need to consider when buying property, and the need to have a great team around you to assist with your decision. 

An expert working for you and not the seller, an impartial mortgage broker, a great financial planner to ensure that the purchase is part of your overall financial strategy.

Here are a few pics from the event 


Building Trust and Rapport on the Phone

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Sydney Property is on the Boil - can you afford not to know what is going on?

Education Seminar on Property

13 seats left - Thursday 26 September at 6pm - at our Sydney offices - to register Click Here

Understanding what you need to do when buying property can often be confusing and time consuming.
In Sydney, we are experiencing record clearance rates and strong demand for properties – both as a home and for investment.
This is forcing people to act faster which often results in mistakes. In this seminar, we will investigate and explain the important aspects you need to consider when buying property.

This will include the following:
·     Should you buy a home or Investment?
·     Should you pay down or increase your debt?
·     What will the bank lend me? How do I get the best loan?
·     What structure do you hold the property in?
·     How do you build a property empire?
·     What are the risks? How do you mitigate them?
·     What are some common estate planning tips and traps.

We have three expert speakers on the night

Chris Gray – Founder and CEO of Empire. (Left)
Chris is one of Australia’s leading independent property experts, hosting Your Property Empire on Sky News Business Channel and a judge on Channel 10s The Renovators.
Paul Roncolato – Partner and Owner of Williams Roncolato.(Centre)
Paul is a specialist in property conveyancing and has more than 25 years’ experience.

Myles Thornton - SMSF Specialist Adviser. (right)
Myles has over 7 years’ experience in integrating property into clients strategies, including within Superannuation.

The cost of the event is $20, food and beverages will be provided and it will start at 6pm and go for 1.5 hours. There will be ample time at the end to ask questions and talk with the experts.

Click Here To Register

When: Thursday the 26th September - 6pm

Where: Level 7, 14 Martin Place, Sydney, NSW - View Map

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Why Generation Y Yuppies Are Unhappy

Posted: 09/15/2013 12:05 pm

Say hi to Lucy.
Lucy is part of Generation Y, the generation born between the late 1970s and the mid 1990s. She's also part of a yuppie culture that makes up a large portion of Gen Y.
I have a term for yuppies in the Gen Y age group -- I call them Gen Y Protagonists & Special Yuppies, or GYPSYs. A GYPSY is a unique brand of yuppie, one who thinks they are the main character of a very special story.
So Lucy's enjoying her GYPSY life, and she's very pleased to be Lucy. Only issue is this one thing:
Lucy's kind of unhappy.
To get to the bottom of why, we need to define what makes someone happy or unhappy in the first place. It comes down to a simple formula:

It's pretty straightforward -- when the reality of someone's life is better than they had expected, they're happy. When reality turns out to be worse than the expectations, they're unhappy.
To provide some context, let's start by bringing Lucy's parents into the discussion:
Lucy's parents were born in the '50s and '60s -- they're Baby Boomers. They were raised by Lucy's grandparents, members of the G.I. Generation, or "the Greatest Generation," who grew up during the Great Depression and fought in World War II, and were most definitely not GYPSYs.

Lucy's Depression Era grandparents were obsessed with economic security and raised her parents to build practical, secure careers. They wanted her parents' careers to have greener grass than their own, and Lucy's parents were brought up to envision a prosperous and stable career for themselves. Something like this:
They were taught that there was nothing stopping them from getting to that lush, green lawn of a career, but that they'd need to put in years of hard work to make it happen.
After graduating from being insufferable hippies, Lucy's parents embarked on their careers. As the '70s, '80s, and '90s rolled along, the world entered a time of unprecedented economic prosperity. Lucy's parents did even better than they expected to. This left them feeling gratified and optimistic.

With a smoother, more positive life experience than that of their own parents, Lucy's parents raised Lucy with a sense of optimism and unbounded possibility. And they weren't alone. Baby Boomers all around the country and world told their Gen Y kids that they could be whatever they wanted to be, instilling the special protagonist identity deep within their psyches.
This left GYPSYs feeling tremendously hopeful about their careers, to the point where their parents' goals of a green lawn of secure prosperity didn't really do it for them. A GYPSY-worthy lawn has flowers.
This leads to our first fact about GYPSYs:
GYPSYs Are Wildly Ambitious
The GYPSY needs a lot more from a career than a nice green lawn of prosperity and security. The fact is, a green lawn isn't quite exceptional or unique enough for a GYPSY. Where the Baby Boomers wanted to live The American Dream, GYPSYs want to live Their Own Personal Dream.
Cal Newport points out that "follow your passion" is a catchphrase that has only gotten going in the last 20 years, according to Google's Ngram viewer, a tool that shows how prominently a given phrase appears in English print over any period of time. The same Ngram viewer shows that the phrase "a secure career" has gone out of style, just as the phrase "a fulfilling career" has gotten hot.


To be clear, GYPSYs want economic prosperity just like their parents did -- they just also want to be fulfilled by their career in a way their parents didn't think about as much.
But something else is happening too. While the career goals of Gen Y as a whole have become much more particular and ambitious, Lucy has been given a second message throughout her childhood as well:

This would probably be a good time to bring in our second fact about GYPSYs:
GYPSYs Are Delusional
"Sure," Lucy has been taught, "everyone will go and get themselves some fulfilling career, but I am unusually wonderful and as such, my career and life path will stand out amongst the crowd." So on top of the generation as a whole having the bold goal of a flowery career lawn, each individual GYPSY thinks that he or she is destined for something even better --
A shiny unicorn on top of the flowery lawn.


So why is this delusional? Because this is what all GYPSYs think, which defies the definition of special:

spe-cial | 'speSHel |
better, greater, or otherwise different from what is usual.
According to this definition, most people are not special -- otherwise "special" wouldn't mean anything.
Even right now, the GYPSYs reading this are thinking, "Good point... but I actually am one of the few special ones" -- and this is the problem.
A second GYPSY delusion comes into play once the GYPSY enters the job market. While Lucy's parents' expectation was that many years of hard work would eventually lead to a great career, Lucy considers a great career an obvious given for someone as exceptional as she, and for her it's just a matter of time and choosing which way to go. Her pre-workforce expectations look something like this:

Unfortunately, the funny thing about the world is that it turns out to not be that easy of a place, and the weird thing about careers is that they're actually quite hard. Great careers take years of blood, sweat and tears to build -- even the ones with no flowers or unicorns on them -- and even the most successful people are rarely doing anything that great in their early or mid-20s.
But GYPSYs aren't about to just accept that.
Paul Harvey, a University of New Hampshire professor and GYPSY expert, has researched this, finding that Gen Y has "unrealistic expectations and a strong resistance toward accepting negative feedback," and "an inflated view of oneself." He says that "a great source of frustration for people with a strong sense of entitlement is unmet expectations. They often feel entitled to a level of respect and rewards that aren't in line with their actual ability and effort levels, and so they might not get the level of respect and rewards they are expecting."
For those hiring members of Gen Y, Harvey suggests asking the interview question, "Do you feel you are generally superior to your coworkers/classmates/etc., and if so, why?" He says that "if the candidate answers yes to the first part but struggles with the 'why,' there may be an entitlement issue. This is because entitlement perceptions are often based on an unfounded sense of superiority and deservingness. They've been led to believe, perhaps through overzealous self-esteem building exercises in their youth, that they are somehow special but often lack any real justification for this belief."
And since the real world has the nerve to consider merit a factor, a few years out of college Lucy finds herself here:
Lucy's extreme ambition, coupled with the arrogance that comes along with being a bit deluded about one's own self-worth, has left her with huge expectations for even the early years out of college. And her reality pales in comparison to those expectations, leaving her "reality - expectations" happy score coming out at a negative.
And it gets even worse. On top of all this, GYPSYs have an extra problem that applies to their whole generation:
GYPSYs Are Taunted
Sure, some people from Lucy's parents' high school or college classes ended up more successful than her parents did. And while they may have heard about some of it from time to time through the grapevine, for the most part they didn't really know what was going on in too many other peoples' careers.
Lucy, on the other hand, finds herself constantly taunted by a modern phenomenon: Facebook Image Crafting.
Social media creates a world for Lucy where A) what everyone else is doing is very out in the open, B) most people present an inflated version of their own existence, and C) the people who chime in the most about their careers are usually those whose careers (or relationships) are going the best, while struggling people tend not to broadcast their situation. This leaves Lucy feeling, incorrectly, like everyone else is doing really well, only adding to her misery:

So that's why Lucy is unhappy, or at the least, feeling a bit frustrated and inadequate. In fact, she's probably started off her career perfectly well, but to her, it feels very disappointing.
Here's my advice for Lucy:
1) Stay wildly ambitious. The current world is bubbling with opportunity for an ambitious person to find flowery, fulfilling success. The specific direction may be unclear, but it'll work itself out -- just dive in somewhere.
2) Stop thinking that you're special. The fact is, right now, you're not special. You're another completely inexperienced young person who doesn't have all that much to offer yet. You can become special by working really hard for a long time.
3) Ignore everyone else. Other people's grass seeming greener is no new concept, but in today's image crafting world, other people's grass looks like a glorious meadow. The truth is that everyone else is just as indecisive, self-doubting, and frustrated as you are, and if you just do your thing, you'll never have any reason to envy others.
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Sunday, September 08, 2013

10 Quotes All Entrepreneurs Should Memorize

Joel Peterson

Chairman, JetBlue Airways. Stanford Business School

Life can be tough. As my mother used to wryly remind me, “No one gets out alive.” We all have plenty of less-than-perfect moments. Not even the most gifted, telegenic and charming people live every day in the sunshine.
The same is true for entrepreneurs. Just as “bad things happen to good people,” every great entrepreneur regularly stares down the barrel of failure.
Graham Weaver, the founder of Alpine Investors and a frequent visitor to my business classes, reminds would-be entrepreneurs that the only failures they should fear are the ones of character and effort. It’s an uncertain world, and there are only so many things you can control. Even when you’re giving 100% and doing your best to be an honorable and ethical leader, things go wrong.
What you can control is how you deal with those setbacks. However stressful failure can be, if you pick yourself up and get back on the horse, you’ve passed the real test.
And when you do, you’ll start to see more silver linings than you expected. In pushing through failure, you’ll learn who your real friends are – the ones who know what you’re made of and believe in what you’ll do next. You’ll discover reserves of energy, persistence and confidence that you didn’t know you had. And you’ll feel a new sense of creativity, the ingenuity to solve hard problems, that might have remained fallow without the challenges.
One way I’ve prepared for my own unanticipated, but nonetheless certain, failures is by memorizing these 10 quotes:
  1. "What does not destroy me, makes me stronger." – Friedrich Nietzsche, 1844-1900 (wat ne dood maak, maak vet!)
  2. "Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance." Samuel Johnson 1709-84.
  3. "Sweet are the uses of adversity." – William Shakespeare, 1564-1616
  4. "When it’s darkest, men see the stars." – Ralph Waldo Emerson, 1803-1882
  5. "Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom." – General George S. Patton, 1885-1945
  6. "When the well’s dry, we know the worth of water." – Benjamin Franklin, 1706-1790
  7. "A certain amount of opposition is a great help to a man. Kites rise against, not with the wind." – John Neal, 1793-1876
  8. "Success is going from failure to failure without a loss of enthusiasm." – Anon
  9. "He knows not his own strength that hath not met adversity." – Ben Jonson, c. 1573-1637
  10. "Life is not always a matter of holding good cards, but sometimes playing a poor hand well." – Jack London, undated
One last quote I always keep nearby is this one from Theodore Roosevelt -- about the value of “daring greatly”. It's an excerpt of a speech he gave at Paris’s Sorbonne in April, 1910:
It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.
It’s nice to remind yourself that anyone who fails at trying to do something great is in pretty good company. This group knew that the best dreams can often temporarily disguise themselves as nightmares – better to press forward and leave the fear behind.

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Investors set record in rush back to the market

Posted on Monday, September 02 2013 at 11:31 AM  - Property Investor

Property investors are returning to bricks and mortar – and in a big way.

Around 49.5 per cent of home loans processed in New South Wales last month were for investors, according to mortgage broker company Australian Finance Group. This is the highest level of investor activity the company has ever recorded for any state. Other areas around the nation were also strong, with investors comprising of 36.7 per cent of new home loans processed in Victoria, 35.8 per cent in Queensland, 32.9 per cent in South Australia and 28.4 per cent in Western Australia.

General manager of sales and operations Mark Hewitt says $3613 million worth of loans were processed in August, which is higher than the record-breaking figure of $3608 million in May.

“With property prices starting to rise and rates set to remain low for a while yet, a lot of investors are anticipating the next property cycle,” he says.

“The New South Wales figure is very strong, but in part this is because two thirds of first homebuyers exited the market after the withdrawal of buyers’ grants.”

Along with unprecedented levels of investor interest, New South Wales saw the average mortgage size break through the $500,000 barrier for the first time, to $505,000. Fixed home loans are also becoming more popular, with 26.1 per cent of new loans now fixed. This suggests many borrowers are locking in part or all of their loans, in anticipation of the next rate cycle turning, Hewitt says.

How to find new business opportunities

It’s not rocket science.  The key ingredients to finding new opportunities are an open mind, observation, curiosity and some simple innovation tools and techniques. 

Here are some quick tips from Roger La Salle the developer of La Salle Matrix Thinking™.

Observe new trends and look at their implications.  For example an ageing population creates opportunities not only in health care, fitness and residential accommodation,

but in new co-living models and in many related services from home deliveries to entertainment, connectivity and travel.

Look for predictable behaviour.  

If a person buys a new car – invariably they go for a drive. 

Where are the opportunities?  

Hotels, motels, restaurants, garages, tourist destinations and others within a few hours drive can offer special deals through the car dealership.  Lots of opportunities here. 

Observe consistent and repetitive behaviour.  What do people do every day or frequently that represents an opportunity?  For example, many people commute to Melbourne using trains.  Yet it is still difficult to buy breakfast, coffee, newspapers and snacks on commuter trains.  
A long trip offers time to do something productive such as watch/listen to a seminar, learn first aid, study French, play chess, speed dating, share a common interest with other commuters.  
On a simple journey, there are plenty of untapped business opportunities for enterprising people. 

Future positioning.  Everything changes - and very few products, services and processes will be unchanged in the next few years. 

Consider how this will affect what you do today and your current 2 – 5 year plus business model.  Don’t just respond – lead the way.    

Hear Roger La Salle and learn more about Matrix Thinking at the Opportunity Café on 222nd November, 2013.  

The Opportunity Café is an action-packed event for innovators, start ups and budding entrepreneurs to help create, refine and fast track viable new ideas and opportunities.  It covers IP, the idea-to-market process, how to find funds and woo investors, collaborative pitches, innovation exercises and more! Check it out at

Roger La Salle is a successful entrepreneur and technologist.  La Salle Matrix Thinking™ is a practical tool that provides ‘structure’ to creativity and uses ‘seeds’ and ‘catalysts’ to drive the thinking process.  He is a director of INNOVIC.  See

Contact:  Joss Evans, CEO INNOVIC
Tel: (03) 8060 3504        and