Sam Saggers' 10 questions you should ask about every suburb

Asking the right questions is an absolutely critical skill for property investors looking to get ahead with their investing, particularly if they're hoping to ensure the suburb or area they are looking at is going to stack up.

Positive Real Estate's Sam Saggers points to 10 easy questions that you should ask as a starting point. 

1) What is the availability of new land? Will it be effected by urban sprawl or infill development?

2) What major infrastructure projects are happening in the area? 

3) What major retailers are moving to the area?

4) What commercial office space is being expanded?  Are the more jobs being implemented in small businesses?

5) What transport plans are in the area? 

6) What is the major demographic of the area? Could it change over time positively 

7) What schools are in the area? Does that match the needs of the market? Would families fight to live in the area to benefit from the schools?

8) What ability does the market landscape have to change? Or be gentrified?

9) What are the rentals yields like?

10) What are major companies doing in the area? Are airlines flying more regularly to an area? Are major companies building in an area?

He admitted that hotspotting is not an exact science, and while not every suburb will grow as expected, he said these 10 questions are crucial for investors to be asking.

To explain how he approaches these questions, Saggers pointed to Queensland's Townsville as one area widely regarded as diverse and offering a lot of demographic changes. While it has been on investors' radars for some time, he still said it has some good investment opportunities.

"[It's] Queensland’s strongest regional economy and de facto second state capital," Saggers said.

He pointed to major infrastructure of hospital redevelopments as being important for the area's future. For instance, the Townsville Hospital has recently completed the first stage of a $437 million redevelopment project.

"Townsville has become Queensland’s largest service center after Brisbane and currently has $54 billion of committed infrastructure projects across mining, construction and transport," he said.

He then looked at supply and demand, and found the picture to be favourable.

"Demand is improving, supply of mortgage in possession stock, that was a hangover from the GFC has dried up. There is large land estates that can aid the cities growth but the supply of new housing is limited to a few estates and the Honeycombs redevelopment of the urban city fringe," he said.

Jennifer Duke

Jennifer Duke

Jennifer Duke was a property writer at Property Observer

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