Why you should do your homework before buying off the plan

first_imgSeminars Penrith Home Show istock.FOR some, buying a house or unit that does not yet exist can be intimidating. As consumers we are conditioned to inspect goods before we buy so we know exactly what we’re getting.But buying property off-the-plan in Townsville can potentially be a sound strategy to maximise your personal wealth.A golden rule in real estate is that it is a long-term investment and not speculative. As a guide, plan to hold your property for at least a decade to give yourself the best chance for good capital growth. Benefits to buying off-the-plan can include lower prices than established properties (although, not always, so be sure to research the market), some customisation of floor plans and finishes could be available, only paying 10 per cent deposit until after the project is complete.In certain circumstances investors can access tax depreciation benefits post-settlement which means you can maximise benefits and improve after-tax cash flow. And, of course, don’t forget that the Queensland Government is offering a first-home buyer grant of $15,000 if you buy off-the- plan or build as well as stamp duty savings on properties up to $500,000. However, while there are many potential benefits, off-the-plan purchases also come with risks. If you are considering an off-the-plan purchase here are some tips that will help you make a more informed decision. ■ Research the market: The REIQ publishes a quarterly report that gives you the median price movements of established houses and apartments in most Queensland markets, comparing prices over the quarter, over the past 12 months and over the past five years. This gives you an indication of what demand levels are like and how quickly property is selling. More from news01:21Buyer demand explodes in Townsville’s 2019 flood-affected suburbs12 Sep 202001:21‘Giant surge’ in new home sales lifts Townsville property market10 Sep 2020If you’re an investor you may also want to look at vacancy rates because this data can help paint a picture about the rental market. Townsville’s vacancy rate is 5 per cent. ■ Sunset clauses: A sunset clause outlines the maximum amount of time the developer has to complete the project. This clause puts conditions and limits on the contract and it potentially could let you, the builder, or the developer cancel the contract in certain circumstances. Make sure you seek independent legal advice and understand what your contract says about when the sunset clause can be activated, why it can be activated and what happens when it is activated. ■  Background check: What other projects has your developer done? Have there been any failures? Check the builder’s references and work history, including any licence details, builders’ warranty, insurance and compliance certificates. Who is the financier of the project and what is their project history? ■ Check first: In certain markets there is some settlement risk. The property’s value may fall between the time you paid your deposit and the time it comes to settle and this may impact on the lender’s decision to approve the loan. It pays to check with your institution what conditions they’re offering on an off-the-plan loan and what happens if the bank deems the value to have fallen. ■ Rental guarantee: There’s no such thing as a free lunch and any developer who offers a rental guarantee has built this into the price. Do your homework and find out what the median rents are for similar style apartments in that suburb (our QMM report offers this information). Will you still be able to manage mortgage repayments when your rental income reverts to these more realistic levels?There are many opportunities in Townsville to grab an off-the-plan bargain, but like any major purchase, it’s important to do your homework first. If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed consider retaining a buyer’s agent who will guide you through the process and be your advocate.last_img read more

Facebook, Twitter drive record number of calls to Lifeline (Aust)

first_imgSydney Morning Herald 13 January 2016Feelings of isolation enhanced by our increasingly technology-obsessed lives have contributed to a record-breaking year for crisis support service Lifeline, which received more than one million requests for help from troubled Australians in 2015.It is the first time in the charity’s 52-year history that the number of crisis and suicide prevention calls passed the one million mark in a year, while September to December was the busiest four-month period ever for the service’s 24-hour crisis phone line.Lifeline Australia chief executive officer Pete Shmigel said it was no coincidence that more Australians were seeking help at a time when they were also spending more time online, particularly on social media.“We’ve seen the restructuring of the conventional way of our society. We don’t know the neighbours on our own streets … and at the same time you’re getting this amazing phenomenon called social media, which I believe has the capacity to accelerate those senses of loneliness and isolation,” Mr Shmigel said.“The more connected we are online, physically we don’t have time to be connected in real life, and that goes against the grain of hundreds of thousands of years of human experience.“We’ve been in families and we’ve been in communities because we need direct, real, human, sticky, gooey, social contact. It’s what keeps us well.”http://www.smh.com.au/national/facebook-twitter-drive-record-number-of-calls-to-lifeline-crisis-support-20160112-gm4p6n.html Keep up with family issues in NZ. Receive our weekly emails direct to your Inbox.last_img read more

Association, foundation and county officials step up to improve park trails

first_imgVersailles, Ind. — Members of the Southeast Indiana Mountain Bike Association, Inc. have announced improvements to the 22 miles of biking trails in the Versailles State Park. Park officials commend the hard work by members to make the trails some of the best in the state of Indiana.In preparation for increased usage SIMBA has purchased a Rokon, a motorized two-wheel drive motorcycle to respond to emergencies. The group used matching funds from the Rising Sun Regional Foundation to make the purchase.The unique piece of equipment has a litter used to transport an injured person and can access any trails in the park, including horse and hiking trails. Ripley County Sheriff Jeff Cumberworth and Sgt. Corky Houseworth are members of the group and received authorization from county commissioners to purchase the litter with commissary funds.President of the association, Tim Webber says the trails will be highlighted this fall during the 4th Annual Hassmer Fest. Hassmer Fest is a regional event that draws many people to enjoy the park and trails.For more information about the mountain bike association you can contact: SIMBA PO Box 321, Aurora, IN 47001 or follow on Facebook @ Versailles State Park Mountain Bikerslast_img read more

Premier League hopeful over technology

first_img Plans have been in place since last year when the Premier League met with the two currently-licensed GLT companies, Hawk-eye and GoalRef, to install the system at top-flight matches. That could be as early as next season after successful tests at last December’s Club World Cup in Japan. While the Premier League is unwilling to set down an exact date for the system’s first use – a tendering process between the GLT companies is still to begin – there is a desire to have it ready by August. One of the delaying factors in introducing a new system could be over the decision of which company to employ. While both Hawk-Eye, a British-based company, and Goal-Ref were used at the Club World Cup their co-existence was in order to test each against the other. It is understood the Premier League would look to agree a deal with only one of the companies. FIFA granted licenses to both last year, which prompted the Premier League to begin talks, but it is reported up to two new companies could be given the green light by April. That could yet muddy the waters further of a Premier League decision. In Tuesday’s statement FIFA welcomed tenders from “the GLT providers currently in the licensing process” as it determines who will host the technology at the Confederations Cup and World Cup. The Premier League remains hopeful of implementing goal-line technology in time for the start of next season. FIFA’s announcement on Tuesday that it will introduce the technology for the first time at this year’s Confederations Cup will have little bearing on the Premier League’s schedule for its use in this country. “The Premier League has been a long-term advocate for goal-line technology,” a statement from the Premier League read. “We have held discussions with FIFA licensed providers with a view to introducing it as soon as is practically possible.” center_img Press Associationlast_img read more

McCarthy to undergo fitness test

first_img Republic manager Martin O’Neill has included Derby defender Cyrus Christie and Ipswich striker David McGoldrick after their eligibility documentation was finalised last week. The pair both qualify through having Irish grandparents. O’Neill had initially named a provisional 35-strong squad last month but injuries have had an effect with some players having to withdraw. “Marc Wilson misses out due to a torn hamstring during Stoke’s win over Tottenham yesterday,” said a statement on the Football Association of Ireland’s website. Press Association Everton midfielder James McCarthy will travel to Dublin to have his fitness assessed by the Republic of Ireland’s medical team ahead of matches against Scotland and the United States. center_img McCarthy, who turns 24 on Wednesday, played the full 90 minutes of his side’s 1-1 draw at Sunderland on Sunday but came off the pitch complaining of a hamstring injury. He will undergo assessment on the problem when he joins up on Monday evening with the rest of a 27-man squad which has been selected for the Euro 2016 qualifier against Scotland on Friday and a friendly against the United States next week. last_img read more

‘Invaluable’ time for T.D.

first_imgGREGORY DIXON/Herald photoBLOOMINGTON, Ind. — The last time UW had a Tyler Donovan sighting, the junior quarterback was walking off the field to a sea of grimaces by the Wisconsin faithful at Camp Randall after leading three drives that resulted in negative yardage. Donovan did not complete a pass to anyone but a Western Illinois defender, throwing an interception that was returned for a touchdown.With Wisconsin up 42-0 late in the third quarter it was clear that the starters on both offense and defense had made the intended statement. Head coach Bret Bielema took advantage of a golden opportunity to get his backups some playing time, Donovan included. “There’s a lot of valuable experience to be gained out there,” Bielema said. “A lot of guys had never had game experience before. There’s a lot of positives to take out of it.”This time around Donovan was much more effective. “That was a tough situation for those guys and myself,” said Donovan. “It was good to get out here and get in a little bit better situation where you actually can do something.”The backup quarterback led UW to 10 points, completing three of his four passes for 26 yards, including a conversion on third down, before making way for third-stringer Dustin Sherer, who took the field for the first time in his career. “Bottom line, if John were ever to go down, we’d have to be able to step up, and [Donovan’s] got to be able to execute,” said Bielema, who while not normally superstitious couldn’t help but literally knock on the wooden table in front of him while making the statement. “These reps today are priceless.”Mr. Smith goes to BloomingtonOne week after barely seeing the field against Michigan, freshman tailback Lance Smith made up for lost time, carrying the ball for a career-high 19 times, for 65 yards and his first career touchdown at Memorial Stadium, almost eclipsing the number of carries starter P.J. Hill received. Although Hill did gain 129 yards and scored three touchdowns, coaches are still looking for improvement from Hill in other fazes in the game. “P.J. does a good job running the football, but there are still some things he has to clean up as far as [pass] protection,” Bielama said. “The great news about P.J. is that he’s only five games into his career.”Hill showed no signs of being miffed at not getting more carries however, instead stating his belief that the combination is a dangerous one. “He brings a little thunder and lightning into the situation,” Hill commented. “I think it’s good. He has speed and he has power and that throws a defense off a lot.””I like the tandem, we didn’t get Lance in the ballgame last week, there was a concerted effort to get him early. You can see he’s got a little bit different speed than P.J.While Smith had a career day, fifth-year senior Dywon Rowan had a forgettable one, not in that he made any poor plays, but just that his name was absent on the stat sheet after the game, possibly signaling that Smith has surpassed him as the backup running back. “In the words of Paul Chryst, P.J. is No. 1, Dywon is the second running back and Lance is the second tailback,” Bielema said. “They are trying to trust me, trying to give me more chances,” Smith said. “I don’t know what they are going to do with us, but I just know when my time comes I’m going to take advantage of it.”Kickoffs return offWhile it was all smiles after the game for the Badgers and their head coach, Saturday’s contest wasn’t without its blemishes, most notably the continued struggles on kickoff returns. Freshman Josh Nettles who never advanced the ball past the 20-yard line against Michigan only got to the 15-yard line in his only return versus the Hoosiers. Complicating matters was that he fumbled on the play, allowing Indiana’s Troy Grosfield to return the fumble 15 yards for a touchdown.”Kickoff returns still an Achilles heel for us,” said UW head coach Bret Bielema. “We gotta be able to either check our personnel or [our] scheme and make sure that we aren’t trying to do something we can’t execute.” On the ensuing kickoffs, Jarvis Minton returned to lead return duties, which had been stripped from him following a fumble against Western Illinois in the Badgers’ home opener. “I feel that I can help out the team on kick off returns,” Minton said afterward. “I am going to get out there and show everybody that I can make a difference out there.”last_img read more

Ryan Garcia breaks down his ‘ghost punch’ knockout of Romero Duno

first_img“The punch was quick,” Garcia said. “A lot of people think it was the right hand that knocked him out. When in matter of fact, it was the quick left hook right around the temple that caught him. I guess it wasn’t meant for people to see because I caught him clean with that left hook. If you zoom in and slow it really down, you got to slow it down more than slow motion. I took it frame-by-frame because I knew I caught him. I knew I hit him with the hook, and his whole body disappeared. A lot of people missed that.”Because many people didn’t see it, Garcia gave the left hook a unique name. “I call it the ghost punch like Sonny Liston vs. Muhammad Ali (rematch in May 1965) phantom punch,” Garcia said. “But mine is the ghost punch.” All Ryan Garcia heard before his fight against Romero Duno ​in the co-main event of Canelo Alvarez vs. Sergey Kovalev in November was that Duno was the guy to bring him down and derail the hype train centered around him.But Garcia had other ideas in mind, wiping out Duno by knockout 98 seconds into the fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The quick finish set up Garcia’s 2020 debut, on Valentine’s Day against Francisco Fonseca from the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif., live on DAZN. MORE: Watch Garcia vs. Duno on Friday night on DAZN”Nobody gave me a shot,” Garcia said in a DAZN video. “It was weird. I’ve been boxing since I was 7 years old. I already knew I could beat this guy. I knew I could beat him very easily. Everywhere I looked, they all said I was getting knocked out. I’m finally fighting a real fighter. I believed in my skills. I believed in myself.”Garcia and Duno came out aggressive to begin the fight, throwing each punch with evil intentions. “The fight was moving fast,” Garcia said. “He was coming forward non-stop. So I just started throwing my punches. I kept seeing he wanted to duck away from my left hook. I caught a guy before with the same punch. I knew I could land this punch again. I just had to find the right time.”Moments later, Garcia (19-0, 16 KOs) landed a thudding straight right hand that went through Duno’s guard that staggered him. Garcia stayed composed and landed another right hand, followed by a glazing left hook to the temple to bend Duno backward. The fight was stopped, cementing Garcia as more than just a social media sensation but a bona fide boxer who possess legit skills and a severe threat in the lightweight division.last_img read more

Bicycle, Blues & BBQ Festival, Beach Craft Beer Festival in Clear Lake cancelled

first_imgCLEAR LAKE — The 2020 edition of the Bicycle, Blues and BBQ Festival and the Beach Craft Beer Festival scheduled for July in Clear Lake has been cancelled.A statement from Festival Director Tim Putnam and Race Director Matt Curtis says they tried to hold off a decision as long as possible in the hopes that holding the festivities without limitations would be possible. They say as a small volunteer organization, they feel they could not reasonably hold the events while also following public health guidelines.Putnam and Curtis say that with athletes, blues enthusiasts, craft beer lovers, friends and family coming from over 15 states, plus the over 150 volunteers that help with the event, it all adds up to about 10,000 people who come to one central location in Clear Lake, and they know they would not be able to provide the needed protocols that would give everyone the confidence of a safe and healthy environment.With that, they chose to err on the side of public safety and cancel this year’s event, which was scheduled for July 10th through the 12th.last_img read more

Jacksonville beaches and parks reopened

first_imgMayor Lenny Curry of Jacksonville has announced that he will be reopening beaches and parks to the public for essential use beginning at 5:00 pm on Friday.The announcement was made one day after President Trump laid out his three-phase plan to reopen to the country, but said that city officials would ultimately decide when they will reopen their city.“This can be the beginning of the pathway back to normal life,” Curry said. “Please respect and follow these limitations. Stay within the guidelines for your safety as well as for the safety of your neighbors.”While the beaches and parks will be reopened, they will only be open during certain times.  Those times are 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. and from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. each day.Visitors will be able to walk, fish, bike, swim, and walk their dog as long as they maintain an appropriate social distance.The report also stated that those who choose to enter the water, are doing so at their own risk.last_img read more

Jessica leads South West qualifiers for Grand Medal Final

first_img Devon 14-year-old Jessica Francis booked her place in the 2013 England Golf Grand Medal Final when she scored a two-shot win in the South West Region qualifier at Sherborne, Dorset.Jessica, from Churston, had a net score of two-under 72 and leads 10 qualifiers for the Grand Final. She commented: “It’s amazing, I just can’t describe it.”She will be joined at the Grand Medal Final at Northants County Golf Club on June 29 by: Sheelah Ayliffe (Bovey Tracey), Helen Kenworthy (Axe Cliff), Alison Hooper (Henbury), Jean Booth (Burnham & Berrow), Jane Southcombe (Lyme Regis), Donna Saunders (Yeovil), Lesley Pascoe (Stover), Abigail Turner (Okehampton) and Jenny Robins (Tidworth Garrison).The event was contested by the best women club medal players from six counties: Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Wiltshire. All the regional finalists had returned the best four scores at their club in the England Golf Medals during 2012.Jessica’s round included a gross birdie three on the 17th and will help her cut her 13 handicap. The Brixham College pupil took up golf about four years ago, inspired by her brother who has a one-handicap. This season her target is to follow him into single figures.This was the second of six regional medal finals. The South regional final has already been held and the others are: East on 30 April at Gog Magog, Cambs & Hunts; Midlands South on 3 May at Hazlemere, Buckinghamshire; Midlands North on 22 May at Radcliffe-on-Trent, Nottinghamshire; North on 23 May at Eaton, Cheshire.Qualifying net scoresPar 74 CSS 7872 Jessica Francis (Churston)74 Sheelah Ayliffe (Bovey Tracey)75 Helen Kenworthy (Axe Cliff)76 Alison Hooper (Henbury)77 Jean Booth (Burnham & Berrow)78 Jane Southcombe (Lyme Regis), Donna Saunders (Yeovil), Lesley Pascoe (Stover), Abigail Turner (Okehampton)79 Jenny Robins (Tidworth Garrison) 25 Apr 2013 Jessica leads South West qualifiers for Grand Medal Final last_img read more