BOUTIQUE Buyer’s Agent

Sterling Property Buyers

Sterling Property Buyers is a boutique buyer’s agency run by Barney Ellevsen and his dynamic support team. Located in the northern suburbs of Wollongong on the beautiful NSW South Coast just south of Sydney. Sterling Property Buyers specialises in servicing house hunters seeking to purchase a home in the idyllic and highly sought after northern beaches suburbs of Wollongong and the Greater Illawarra region.

Unlike many buyer’s agencies, we do not subcontract work to other agents. When you engage Sterling Property Buyers, Barney will work with you personally throughout the entire process, giving you the assurance and confidence that comes from dealing with the owner of the company.

We also specialise in sourcing and securing cash positive, high growth potential properties for investors throughout Australia including all states and territories, capital cities and regional areas. If there’s a deal to be had, we’ll find it!

Barney has been a property investor and educator for 30 years (including six years as a high school principal). Barney has investment and purchasing experience across a wide variety of property types and market sectors including commercial, residential, house and land projects, renovations, duplexes, student accommodation, holiday rentals / Airbnb, buying off the plan, joint venture developments, multi tenancy and mixed use properties.

When choosing a buyer’s agent to assist you in achieving your real estate goals, it is important to work with someone who has “runs on the board” and a proven successful history of real estate investing. Having successfully built his own multi million-dollar property portfolio yielding a six figure annual positive passive income, Barney combines his passion for education and property investing by sharing his knowledge and experience to assist others in achieving their real estate goals. Barney is a licensed real estate agent and a member of the Real Estate Institute of NSW.

Barney’s recent acquisitions include the purchase of a 24 residential unit complex in Cooma NSW that is benefiting from the Snowy 2 Hydro Project and a mixed use joint venture development project on the Wollongong fringe that will consist of commercial space and affordable residential rental accommodation. 

Barney is the co-founder of a not for profit Community Housing Provider, “Housing Empowering Low-Income People” (HELP). The project is still in the infancy stage and is on track to be granted registration approval from the Registrar’s Office by mid 2022. By partnering with private developers and financiers HELP aims to build and manage100 new generation boarding houses to provide low cost housing to members of our communities who are most in need. Barney is proud to play a key role within HELP who are doing their bit to address the chronic housing crisis within Australia.

Barney lives with his wife Ruth in Bulli, NSW where they have raised their five children!

Buying a Home in Wollongong’s Northern Suburbs

The Wollongong northern suburbs covers a 25 kilometer coastal strip from Fairy Meadow in the south through to Stanwell Park in the north. The strip encompasses approximately 20 suburbs offering a relaxed coastal lifestyle with close proximity to many beautiful beaches, kilometers of cycleways, mountain walking tracks, plenty of great restaurants, cafes and watering holes. This highly desirable area includes the popular beachside suburbs of Bulli, Thirroul and Austinmer.

Located an easy 1 hour drive south of Sydney and benefiting from Wollongong’s strong local economy, a world class university, great schools and a comprehensive suite of modern medical facilities, the area has become a haven for sea changers seeking a more relaxed lifestyle in an idyllic seaside locale. 

Homes in this area have always been in very high demand and this is a trend that has continued over the past two decades. Getting a foot in the market is very competitive. You really need to be in the area or have someone with comprehensive local knowledge and networks representing you on the ground to secure a property. Many properties sell off market and never hit the real estate websites, the ones that do often sell in a matter of days.

That’s where we can help. We have lived in the area and bought property locally for more than twenty years. We have comprehensive local market knowledge, strong community networks and respectful, professional relationships with local selling agents that enable us to source and secure the property of your dreams.

Buying a Quality Investment Property

Buying an investment property is a very different proposition to buying a family home. A good investment decision is made without emotion and is based on analysis of the data and numbers. When you know what you are doing, buying an investment property is a wonderful step towards financial independence and security. We also educate our clients to understand that real estate investment is not a get rich quick scenario. Whilst it is possible at various points within the real estate cycle to make large capital gains over a relatively short period of time, the reality is that real estate investing is a long term proposition. When making a property purchase, an investor should be looking to hold the property for at least 7 to 10 years. Ideally, a buy and hold strategy puts an investor in the best position to continuously grow wealth over the long term. It is important to remember that whilst we are real estate experts we are not financial advisers and we encourage our clients to consult their accountant or financial adviser as well when making their investment decisions to be sure to decide on the correct investment strategy for their own specific situation.

The problem most people have, is that they do not know what to look for when buying an investment property and often saddle themselves with a negatively geared investment in a poor location that takes money out of their pocket every month, eats into their disposable income and has dubious prospects for capital growth. Ideally, a good investment property will be cash flow positive from day one, meaning it will put money into your pocket each month adding to your disposable income and will be in a location that has strong fundamentals for future capital growth. If the property has an upside that enables you to manufacture equity and to add further value down the track then that is even better still.

Whilst real estate investing is not an exact science and no one can guarantee how a property or an area will perform over time, if the fundamentals are right, the greater the chances of strong growth into the future. We complete comprehensive data analysis considering over 20 metrics to determine the best locations to purchase property. This data includes sales volumes, vacancy rates, rental yields, rental growth, vendor discounting, days on market, auction clearance rates, demand verses supply ratios and many more. The fundamentals we look for in a location are a diverse local economy, plentiful employment opportunities, big infrastructure spending on public and private development projects, a growing population, low vacancy rates and a strong demand to supply ratio with increasing quarter on quarter sales volumes. Locations such as these provide the best prospects for sustaining strong capital growth and rental growth for at least the next 5 to 10 years.