A live interview I did with Channel 7’s “Sunrise” began with this: “Finance expert Noel Whittaker says if you want to invest in property, you should stop reading newspaper headlines – would you agree with that?”
That was the perfect entrée for me to discuss media misinformation.
I often tell people the first rule of successful investing is “Stop Reading Newspapers!” People who have the newspaper habit fill their heads with negativity and misinformation, especially about residential real estate. The problem often is not the content of articles, but the headlines. Far too often, the headline does not accurately reflect the article content, but most consumers scan headlines and absorb sound-bytes, without reading the detail.
Most major media emanates from Sydney, where journalists are obsessing over the local situation and turning it into a national crisis.
It’s scaring people, particularly mum-and-dad households.
Real estate professionals – those with long experience of markets as developers, marketers, buyers agents, valuers and advisers – have seen it all before, so it’s business as usual. But impressionable consumers are allowing themselves to be spooked by negative headlines.
The reality is that there are more locations where prices are rising than those where prices are falling – and there are myriad opportunities to buy well for future growth.