​The Property Prospect

We've all heard of someone who has made a fortune buying and selling homes. We've also heard of couples who, after struggling to meet the mortgage payments on their first home, finally give up and sell their home. Both types of buyers often start off with limited budgets. Why is one home buyer a success story and another a cautionary tale of failure? It all boils down to a few simple home-buying secrets.

Plan ahead - Some prospective home buyers plan ahead, while others just dream ahead. The difference is that the dreamers want their dream homes, but don't have a realistic plan.

Know the market - Looking at property prices in real estate agents' windows is the great Australian pastime. It's no way to get to know the real property market, though. Prices on display outside of real estate offices are asking prices only and are not a reflection of what houses actually sell for.

Look for hidden gems - Almost without exception, successful real-estate investors are also renovators. They find the hidden gems and polish them to perfection. There is an art to this, though.