1st street Blog

Houses Of The Future: What Can We Expect? - 17/07/2017

With housing affordability becoming exorbitant, energy renewability growing in importance and modern technology capabilities expected by buyers, houses of the future will push the boundaries of design whilst optimising space efficiency.

Ultra-Ecological Houses

Currently, solar panels on houses are bulky, costly and often require planning permission, making their current use limited. However, in future decades, envision compulsory wafer thin solar-paneled roofing and rainwater catchment channels between the paneling. Elon Musk has epitomised this concept, creating a new solar roof made of glass that looks exactly like a normal roof whilst being stronger than standard roof tiles. (https://www.tesla.com/en_GB/solarroof). Houses of the future will optimise self-sufficient living to its finest, with biomorphic skins on the walls that change colour depending on the weather; dark for keeping the house cool in summer and clear on dull days to let more light in.

Scale

Increasing house prices and growing populations is leading to the necessary influx of innovative ways to live in smaller spaces, think modular and portable housing designs. From transforming shipping containers to building tiny houses, the idea of designing mobile houses on a small scale promotes changing relationships with our belongings and living with just the essentials in a clever, highly usable and often luxurious way.

Advanced Appliances

We already know and love induction hobs: stove tops that generate heat directly through the pan base so that no energy is lost and only turning on when the correct pan is on them, making them incredibly safe. Future appliances will extend on the technologies we currently use with a focus on making life easier. Think coffee machines built into your kitchen, allowing you to customise your perfect cuppa, poured from anywhere in your home via a smartphone app.

Tech-Free Living Spaces

The extensive new technologies can also have a negative impact on society, with most of us now admitting to spending too much time online. Getting back to basics and living tech-free is a novelty to the majority of the population now, so incorporating the simple life back into our fast-paced modern world will be a focus for future homes. The ‘tech-free living room’ is gaining ground around the world, allowing you and your family to enjoy quality time together, away from ever-present smartphones and TV screens.

Multi-Functional Designs

With the growing issue of space becoming more and more limited, house builders and designers are instead starting to look at more interesting ways to utilise spaces and rooms for multifunctional purposes. For example, garages may be designed to convert into an outdoor living room. Similarly, we will see homes focused on flexibility for the future, with new homes built with an option to be added to or extended upon at later stages if necessary.

Digital Wallpaper

Redecorating your home will become a touch of a button with internal walls featuring digital wallpaper that can be changed at any time for a refreshed new look. Selecting new colours, patterns or beautiful outdoor scenes and landscapes will simply be a matter of downloading them onto your smartphone device and uploading them to your chosen wall. Plus, with the endless developments in 3D technology, you’ll even be able to use the walls of your house as a multidimensional giant cinema!

6 Simple Strategies To Live A More Balanced Life - 12/07/2017

Are you feeling burnt out or over exhausted trying to juggle all areas of your busy life with no time to simply stop and take a breather? Life is very much a balancing act. We are constantly trying to move forward with purpose, to achieve our goals, all whilst trying to keep in balance the various elements of our lives.

Whilst we can’t anticipate and plan for everything in our lives, we can decide how, where and when to concentrate our energies. These 6 simple strategies will help you to achieve this sought-after feeling of balance and contentment.

1. Assess your life as it is now
Do you feel physically exhausted, mentally drained or find yourself without close relationships? Would you call yourself a workaholic? If the answer to any of these is yes, committing to improving these aspects is the first step in achieving a more balanced life. Assess how you’re feeling physically as well as mentally and emotionally.

2. Know what your priorities are and set goals
Balance does not mean cramming in every activity possible. Understand your values and decide what’s important to you, then set your boundaries and avoid becoming overwhelmed by juggling too many big projects in your life at once. Once your priorities are in place, set realistic and timely goals in all areas of your life. Ensure your goals cover your relationships and family commitment, physical being, spiritual alignment, mental development as well as your job and finances.

3. Take care of your physical self
Overall successes or balance will never be achieved if you’re unhealthy. Commit to getting plenty of rest each night, get active and eat properly every day. Ideally, set aside time each day for an activity that you enjoy. Get outdoors and enjoy a walk in your lunch break, catch up with an old friend over a healthy weekend brunch, or read a good book before bed each night.

4. Create an efficient mindset
Commit to being organized and plan ahead. Take time at the beginning of each week to assess what needs to be done and tick them off as you complete each task. Seeing them written down in front of you creates mental clarity to promote productivity throughout your week. Be sure to include not just professional commitments but personal ones too, such as spending quality time with friends and family and time for yourself.

5. Expect the unexpected and be flexible
Rather than get stressed and upset, learn to be adjustable and adaptive when unexpected events occur in life that are out of your control. If you accept that anything can happen at any time, it’s less likely it will throw you totally off your stride when it does. Similarly, don’t feel that your decisions are set in concrete; if you feel as though an area of your life isn’t quite working, be willing to adapt to a new approach and move forward.

6. Maintain a positive mental attitude
Begin each day with the intention of making the most of it. Life may not always go as planned, but it can go more smoothly if you continually put it back into perspective and remain optimistic. Part of living a well-balanced life is learning how to deal with adversity and uncertainty. If you practice mindfulness and try to not let things get to you, you will remain less stressed. Savour the blessings in life with a sense of gratitude. Once you’ve done everything you can within your control, simply let your life unfold. Be prepared for the future, but don’t let yourself worry about it. Life is a ride that you should enjoy!

1st Street Supports Diabetes Australia - 06/07/2017

280 Australians develop diabetes every day. That is one person every five minutes.

For the month of July, 1st Street Financial is proud to support Diabetes Australia.

Diabetes Australia works to raise the awareness about the seriousness of diabetes, promoting prevention and early detection strategies and advocating for better standards of care. Diabetes Australia is also a significant financial contributor to research into better treatments for diabetes and the search for a cure.

This is a cause that is close to our heart and for the month of July we will donate a portion of all loans settled to Diabetes Australia.

RBA LEAVES CASH RATE AT 1.50% - 04/07/2017

At its meeting today, the Board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 1.50 per cent.

For full article please visit www.rba.gov.au.

‘Rentvesting’: The new way young Australians are getting a foot into the property market - 08/06/2017

As property prices continue to rise in cities all around Australia, it’s becoming increasingly more difficult for young Aussies to get a foothold in the market. This has promoted the question of whether renting a home may work out more affordable than actually buying a property. Hence, ‘rentvesting’ has emerged.

What is ‘rentvesting’?

Once at the core of the ‘great Australian dream’, young Australians striving to buy property are being forced to come up with alternative methods due to skyrocketing prices and strong competition. With medium house prices in Sydney hovering just over the $1.1 million mark, rentvesting offers new home buyers a more affordable alternative. Instead of buying the property they want, young Aussies are renting in the areas they want to live and investing their money in properties in cheaper suburbs. This method allows buyers to rent out their investment home, helping to cover their own weekly rental payments and later selling the property for a capital gain. The idea is that it allows young buyers to live the lifestyle they want now, while building a small scale property portfolio for future ventures.

Pros and cons of rentvesting

Pros:
– Enter the property market sooner: rentvesting allows you to get a foot on the property ladder with a smaller deposit.
– Live your ideal lifestyle: you can live in your optimal location and property by renting instead of buying, without worrying about the long-term commitment of an unaffordable mortgage of purchasing that same home.
– Build wealth: allows you to start growing your investment property portfolio, generating financial stability for the future.
– Save for your dream home: owning an investment property that generates regular rental income whilst increasing overall value and wealth over time can allow you to buy your dream home later down the track.
– Flexibility: renting allows you to easily upgrade or downgrade your living arrangements if there’s a sudden change in your financial situation.
– Best of both worlds: where you want to live and the best place to invest is often not the same. Rentvesting allows you to buy wisely for investment in an area that’s going to result in the most capital gain.
– Tax perks: if the investment property is negatively geared (the rental income is less than the interest plus other expenses paid), you are making an investment loss, meaning you can claim it as a tax deduction.

Cons:
– Paying rent is dead money: some Aussie’s see renting as “dead money,” paying off someone else’s mortgage, thus deterring particular people considering this approach.
– You don’t own your home: as much as you may love the rental property you live in, you’ll never own it.
– You can’t make it your own: living in a rental property can have its setbacks. Landlord restrictions can limit your ability to hang artwork, paint walls, or do any minor renovations to make it feel more like your own home.
– Capital gains tax: when you sell the investment property for more than you paid for it, you’ll pay tax on that gain at your marginal tax rate. You can reduce this tax amount by owning the property for more than 12 months, as well as living in the property for a period of at least 3 months in the year before selling.

So what’s right for you?

Unfortunately, there’s no stock-standard answer to this question. The right approach will depend entirely on your individual lifestyle and financial circumstances. There are both pros and cons of rentvesting, so consider all your options when looking to make a property commitment to ensure it’s the right for you.

Lifestyle, Home and Design Instagram’s You Need Now - 07/06/2017

Whether you’re looking to restyle your home, buy property, a DIY weekend renovator, or simply love amazing home and garden design, Instagram is an amazing tool to gather inspiration. These are the top Insta accounts you should be following for all things home, lifestyle and design.

Fiona Michelon @fiona_michelon_stylist
Fiona is an interior stylist and photographer and the queen of all things DIY. Her profile is filled with different styles and themes that you can implement yourself, including easy DIY tricks to create modern, balanced and inviting spaces around your own home.

Martine Vanderspuy @Martine_gallery
Martine is a graphic designer and artist, best known for her highly unique pieces that combine high key photography and painting with tactile effects like resin, varnish and perspex. Her profile is a highlight reel of stunning artwork displays conveying themes from earthy tones to oceanic abstracts. Her designs will inspire the styling within your own home.

Million Dollar Listing Sydney @milliondollarlistingsydney
An account showcasing Sydney’s finest listed and sold properties, be prepared to be wowed. From beautifully renovated federation homes in Sydney’s best leafy suburban pockets, to new sheike penthouses with panoramic harbour views, we’re all allowed to have dreams, right?!

Three Birds Renovations @threebirdsrenovations
These three inspiring women are friends, renovators and mums who swapped the boardroom for building sites. Scroll through their incredible renovation projects around Sydney, showcasing their transformations of tired, lifeless homes into welcoming masterpieces that ooze style and sophistication.

Garden Life @Gardenlife_syd
Whether you have a green thumb or not, this Insta profile will inspire you with all things flora for both inside the home and around the garden. Garden Life showcases beautiful greenery displays, from oversized potted trees to small succulent collections, use this Instagram as inspo to create a peaceful sanctuary for yourself.

Grand Designs @granddesignsau
Be inspired by the most unique homes from all around the world. From a clay mud brick home conveying Mexican heritage, to a self-sustainable development built on top of sand dunes, this Insta showcases the vast opportunities when designing and building your own home.

Mark Tuckey @mark_tuckey
Mark Tuckey is an Australian timber furniture designer with a focus on simplistic, yet rugged and recycled pieces. This insta profile is a display of their one of a kind custom made designs that will make any area of your home feel warm and welcoming. If you’re a lover of all things timber and natural products, this profile will work wonders for your style inspiration.

RBA LEAVES CASH RATE AT 1.50% - 06/06/2017

At its meeting today, the Board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 1.50 per cent.

For full article please visit www.rba.gov.au.

Black Dog Institute– Because Everybody Deserves Peace of Mind - 01/06/2017

1st Street are proud to support the Black Dog Institute in the month of June.

The Black Dog Institute is dedicated to understanding, preventing and treating mental illness, and the promotion of wellbeing.

Their mission is to enable mentally healthier lives through innovations in science, medicine, education, public policy and knowledge translation.

We will donate a portion of all income earned in June to this very important cause.

RBA LEAVES CASH RATE AT 1.50% - 02/05/2017

At its meeting today, the Board decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 1.50 per cent.

For full article please visit www.rba.gov.au.

1st Street Helps Kiss Goodbye to MS - 01/05/2017

For the month of May, 1st Street is proud to support MS Research Australia in their initiative, Kiss Goodbye to MS.

MS Research Australia’s mission is to accelerate research targeting the prevention, better treatments and a cure for multiple sclerosis.

We believe this is an important cause and will donate a portion of our proceeds for all loans settled in the month of May.

If you would like to discuss your home loan options please contact 1st Street today and help us fight MS! Or for more information and details on how you can donate directly visit http://www.kissgoodbyetoms.org/

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