In this installment of Property Women in Action we interviewed Mary Ugarte, 44 years old, married with two teenage children. Mary currently owns 7 investment properties and has completed 1 renovation.
What first inspired you to get into property?
I enjoyed property, I always have. We paid off our family home a few years ago and we were sitting on all this equity doing nothing. We wanted to do something but we didn’t have the get up and go. I then went to an Anthony Robbins and Property Women Seminar last year. I became inspired and made the move.
Tell us about your property portfolio? What have you done?
Our first investment property we purchased in 1999 for $130,000 in Kingston, near the university of NSW. We still own the unit and it is currently valued at $220,000. By using the equity in our home we have also purchased properties in Tasmania, South Australia, New South Wales and Queensland.
How do you locate your investment properties?
We usually use a buyers agent.
How would you describe your strategy for investing?
Buy, hold, build equity and purchase more. We don’t really renovate but may do so in the future.
What lessons have you learnt along the way?
Watch the market. It’s a wise move.
Do you have any advice you can give to our readers?
Do your homework. If you don’t have the time, get someone to do the homework for you – it may cost you but in the long run it will be worth it. It pays to do your research.
Where are you heading now? What are you looking to achieve?
We have just purchased 5 properties in a short space of time so we are now waiting a little to have these re-valued and then we’ll purchase more.
How does your husband feel about you being a “property woman”?
He loves it! He also gets involved in the decision making.
How has your life changed since becoming involved in property investing?
Life is busier. Handling the paperwork is time consuming but you have to keep on top of it. Life is more exciting thinking about the future.
How do you picture yourself in 5 years from now?
In 5 years I would hope to increase my property portfolio significantly and become financially independent – or headed that way. Ultimately, I would like to have enough property to be able to give one away to charity.
Mary Ugarte has attended two of the Reno Kings Property Women Workshops. Her opinion: “The workshops are very informative and inspiring. It takes the fear out of buying property. It is such a relaxed atmosphere and not intimidating at all”.