'Buying NZ Property – Download the free sample readings!

NZ presents some of the most alluring property in the Western World; particularly given the greater easy of residency, the low cost of property, and the liveability of the country. In addition, there is no capital gains tax, transfer taxes, VAT/GST or wealth taxes in NZ, so rest assured that NZ property is tax-effective! Learn more now!

New Zealand Property Report 2010 - Download the table of contents or buy this 180-page report at our online store for just $US19.95.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Investment in NZ farming assets

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There was an article in the NZ Herald today highlighting the appeal of NZ farming properties as an investment opportunity. The author questioned why NZ'ers, instead even foreigners, are so interested in NZ rural property when the income is so bad. I makes the case that:
1. Rural properties are capital gains tax free
2. Rural properties have offered an average capital appreciation of 10.5%

There are another two further reasons to think there is even more upside in property:
1. Hedge: Property offers some appeal as protection from currency debasement. Commodities are priced in USDs. Thus if the NZD was debased because of poor government policy, there is a hedge in the sense that your US-denominated income will cover your capital loss.
2. Market access: There is scope for the USA-Japan-EU to eventually drop their agricultural tariffs and subsidies which have penalised NZ, as well as the third world. There is of course a trend towards free trade/trade liberalisation. The question is - how long will this take to occur?
3. Demand: There is a shift in Asian developing countries to meat-rich diets, so that demands more meat and dairy imports from places like NZ. Chinese, Filipinos, Koreans, Japanese, etc want bigger breasts, and to get those they need to drink milk. Of course they are also eating more protein like McDonalds, etc.
4. Investment: There is the opportunity to subdivide rural properties into lifestyle blocks.

A lot of property is no longer appealing for wool growing. There is some interest in these properties for timber-based industries, which are of course low-maintenance industries, and easily contracted out to third parties. There is even the prospect of tax, carbon credits and ancillary opportunities like using the waste products for renewable power generation.

Read more in this article or check out our NZ Property Guide. NZ has the obvious advantage over Australia in several respects:
1. Rainfall in NZ is more reliable
2. The currency is more directly tightened to the agricultural commodities, as opposed to metals and energy. This will not change for the next 10-15 years. NZ will eventually discover oil/gas I suspect.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

NZ government and opposition policy lunacy

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When you look at the NZ political landscape....an explorer might declare its 'desert' and sparsely populated with good ideas. Take the latest saving from both:
1. The Labour Opposition Party
2. The NZ Reserve Bank governor

The Labour Finance minister is arguing that he is not in favour of privatisation, but partnerships between private and public capital are ok. One might wonder why the distinction. It is a silly, arbitrary one....but then I never looked to politicians as moral exponents, or leaders of anything worthwhile. On the contrary, they display the hubris of wanting to look 'new age', but in the process, simply looking like idiots. What is the intent of this government policy? Maybe Labour realises that its hard to attract capital to NZ, so you have to offer 'statutory favours' (i.e. kickbacks) to business through 'partnerships'. Maybe Labour wants to make some money on the side after the travel allowances were abandoned?
Ideologically where are they going? Why retain control over SOEs? Is private business is bad, why don't they embrace the nationalisation of business? Maybe that is too politically incorrect. Maybe Labour represents socialism in its 'unashamed honesty'.. well no, otherwise they would favour nationalisation. Nope, intellectual cowards. Are they not content with extorting wealth through taxes, that they need to drive business as well? Don't they see this as a conflict of interest? i.e. Govt as both regulator, judiciary and executive? Well they do it in government to such bad effect, why not in business as well? Isn't it privatisation? Well, Labour will not allow itself to believe this because it wants to establish the support of the unions. What we are going to see is the SOEs use this concession to shift businesses into SOE subsidiaries, so the SOEs might end up functioning like the model of Singapore's cronyism, where SOEs are investing in totalitarian states like Myanmar, with utterly no accountability because they have a state minister as their patron saint.

What does their suggestion achieve? Firstly, it entails the ongoing enslavement of private capital for public purposes, with the perpetuation of the state/public delusion of economic, moral or political worth. It totally ignores the problems caused by the state, it ignores the psychological impact of slavery, moral scepticism and marginalisation of everyone, or at minimal the fear of being marginalised, alienated or imprisoned for some arbitrary statutory law conjured up by the government, i.e. Speeding camera fines for which their is no logical justification, or the blatant lack of accountability of judges in the judicial system, nor the failure to address the conflict of interest in having judges appointed by the two major parties. It matters little the judiciary is bipartisan, since both parties retain an entrenched interest in their longevity, at the expense of other parties.. But on a more fundamental level, who cares what the parliament thinks. They are a pack of idiots. They don't convey moral authority. Have you ever heard political philosophy spoken from George Bush? No. Have you heard of John Key consulting a moral philosopher? A scientist? Well yes, but they do this only on the margins. Public policy is decided in cabinet with the support of the party. Its party generated, and its utter evil. It is indefensible, but it does not need to be defended because they have the majority. The public who voted for them have to trust them...because they have a choice every 3 years, and if they are wrong, they get to vote for another group of extorting, thieving idiots who fundamentally support the same thieving system.

The Reserve Bank has advised the government to adopt the Nordic system of taxing the income from capital rather than income. This is because NZ does not produce any income, so you have to tax the holders of capital. Hmmm? The problem with that is that it will diminish the value of capital by making it a cost burden, making it cheaper for foreign enterprise to buy. More importantly, it does not change what is fundamentally wrong with taxation and centralised, arbitrary government control - that they are coercive, centralised and arbitrarily defined. This is merely an idea from a government agency bereft of ideas, playing on the fringes of a very evil system. Democracy will not lead us to some form of collectivism...it is collectivism. We are slowly seeing individualism undermined by the 'common interest', or at least the pretense of it through imaginary representation.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The future of the NZ Pike River mine

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During the Pike River mine disaster I have raised some questions for journalists to ask, and raised some suspicions. As news becomes available, it is apparent that the mining company has done a good job in undertaking the rescue. The latest reports are available here. The next step will be to restore ventilation to the mine in order that the bodies may be recovered. It also seems likely that the mine will be sealed up and become their tomb. The reality is that this decision may depend upon a decision to re-open the mine.

I have previously argued that the mine should not be reopened without coal methane extraction. These coal seams need to be degassed. The reason is not simply that the coal is gassy, but that I suggest its because the coal is relatively deformed, resulting in strong hydrostatic pressures within the rocks. I would not be surprised if the mine was subject to sudden inflows of water and release of methane inside the mine.

It would be an expensive effort to extract the gas from the development headings. It would be even harder since you would have to get access to existing development headings. Any efforts to re-open the mine will be opposed by 'greenies' because it is a fairly pristine mountain forest environment. I really think it was poor judgement which allowed this mine to proceed. It is superior quality coal. It is the premium 'metallurgical' coal. The seams are not great, the port facilities pretty poor, the distance to market is not appealing, but the coal prices are high, and are likely to stay high. The commercial aspects tend to support mining, however I am inclined to say that its too hard. It would be far more constructive for NZ Oil & Gas to invest in offshore oil & gas exploration. Oil & gas has far more upside, NZ has considerable potential, and probably at far less environmental cost (depending on location & recovery practices) than coal mining. Coal mining is not the future of Greymouth, its the past. The town without this resource probably only had 10 years of resources left. There are far more readily available and appealing coal resources in Australia, Russia and China.
On this one, I agree with the greenies. Really the future of NZ likes in high values services, niche exports, oil & gas, farm products and tourism. Yes, coal will remain a niche export. It just didn't make sense at Pike River. Solid Energy is developing a very appealing and large lignite coal resource in Southland which will have a 100+ year life span. It will convert low grade, hydrated lignite into high energy briquettes made by compression I believe. That resource will make Southland's Gore the coal mining capital of NZ. Greymouth will lose its title in the next 10 years.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Should the Pike River mine have been developed?

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In the wake of the 2nd explosion at the Pike River Mine, we might ask whether the mine ought to have been developed, and in the wake of the explosion, whether it ought to be re-opened. I have a number of reasons for thinking that:
1. The mine ought not have been developed the way it was.
2. The mine ought to be re-opened subject to certain conditions

Should the mine have been developed.
The problem with how the mine was developed was the lack of consideration given to the high methane gas content in the coal. The reasons for ignoring or downplaying the gas content was:
1. Surface drilling to extract the gas would have required the development of roads to get drill rigs in, as well as pipe infrastructure. The gas could have been used in Greymouth, but that would have required a power station. It is doubtful that a coal seam gas power station would offer favourable availability factors given the discontinuous nature of probably gas supplies. It would have necessitated electricity supplies anyway, i.e. It would require spending more money. It therefore did not make sense to extract the gas. The other reasons for not extracting gas from the surface is the pristine forests in the region, and the ruggedness of the terrain. Clearly, coal seam gas extraction would have prevented this project from being developed.
2. Underground drilling to extract gas and pipe it out of the development heading was another option. This was less commercially appealing because you are not drilling the whole field; only those areas accessible from the development heading and ancillary tunnels. The coal seam methane extraction/drilling would also interfere with coal development; so this is even less viable than surface drilling to drain the gas out.

Mines in Queensland which have high methane concentrations have the methane drained from the coal prior to recovery as a matter of routine. e.g. Moura Coal Mine being a case in point.

Should the mine be re-opened?
It is easy enough to re-open the mine. The question is whether it ought to be. Logic would suggest that a mine explosion might happen again. The reality is that the mine should not be opened for a number of reasons:
1. High manning level - the mine operates using less mechanised methods of mining which exposes more labour to any explosion, compared to say longwall mining operations.
2. Difficult access - the difficulty getting access to the coal seams to drain the methane makes this a difficult task, raising opposition from the green groups.
3. Value of the coal - The coal is not critical to local industry. It is solely exported to foreign countries. It is valuable, however it might be best left where it is. Shareholders have lost all wealth; there is little to recoup from redeveloping the mine. NZ Oil & Gas was the largest shareholder. It las lost most of its investment...maybe it ought to stay lost.
4. Industry value - The coal industry is important to Greymouth. The reality is that this is one mine. Maybe the industry would be better off developing a coal seam gas extraction industry. Clearly this ought to be done solely on a scale to supply electricity to the local communities through existing electricity transmission networks. There are still several surface coal mines in the area which will continue to operate. They present no significant risk to life.

Pike River Mine tragedy: The competency of management

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The more information that emerges about this mine accident, the more one is compelled to reflect on what plausibility could be the reason for the accident. An inquiry will make the final decision after hearing submissions, however after reading the latest news from the NZ Herald, I am going to raise several points:
1. The current CEO was appealing because he had a relationship with miners in the area. He was therefore appealing as a CEO candidate because he had the capacity to keep wages low. It is a small town, so a 'liked CEO' has the capacity to stop 'wage extortion' during a coal mining boom. This is a small town, so you want to appeal to 'old town' values right? Did this result in safety mistakes? Did he have underground mine experience in Qld?
2. The latest news suggests that the operations manager at the mine was "a former Deputy Chief Inspector of Coal Mines with the Department of Mines in Queensland" (source). This is a concern to me because you have a bureaucrat running a mining operation. A certificated mine worker has since convinced me that this manager was experience in underground coal mining and that he was very safety conscious. He has worked with him, and argued that I should not attribute blame to him. I have attempted not to do that because (like most), I am on the outside...merely highlighting plausible causes for the disaster. Gas and coal dust explosions are preventable. Its possible this could have been anticipated, but it must be acknowledged that even the best supervisors cannot completely avert poor practice because they must delegate responsibility, human error, someone has a bad night, etc. Taking work in NZ could ultimately be considered a step back in one's career, or maybe it was a retirement decision. The inquiry will make the decision...this commentary is only intended to assist any family ensure all bases have been covered.

So you might ask...how is the government to blame for this? Well, its a long straw, but aside from the points I have made elsewhere, the problem arises because of government for several reasons:
1. Government regulation makes decision-making arbitrary and overly centralised, resulting in bottlenecks in supply and demand. Govt makes markets less efficient.
2. Chinese huge energy demand which sees corporate entities making 'life-threatening' decisions for the sake of large profits, or distorting markets so others are marginal, can tend to result in 'short cuts'. The Chinese demand was because of political oppression by the Chinese 'government', and now suddenly they release the oppression, you get an economic and investment boom stimulated by cheap wages. The same thing happened in the Industrial Revolution. The distortions created slum conditions, which we see today in Chinese cities. Its not news so much in the West because there is no modern-day Karl Marx going to China and reporting on it. It will probably happy. Probably some rich liberal too; but that won't stop the 'maligned working class' from blaming all rich people and capitalism.
They will be too uneducated and unthinking to make any reasonable analysis; but it won't stop them from duly disparaging capitalism and capitalists with smear as to its impracticality, when it was always socialism and the socialistic distortion of capitalism. You will hear only smear about 'greedy capitalists'. You will not hear how this Pike River CEO was under tremendous pressure, knew the workers personally, regarded them as friends; nor the fact that he cried over their losses. Cynicism will rein and they will disparage people on dubious ideological grounds. That does not mean we should repudiate ideas. You don't throw the baby out with the bath water....as moral sceptics are prone to do...you remain a critical and engaged thinker.

It was just released that their has been a 2nd mine explosion at the Pike River operation on the West Coast of NZ. The Police Operations Commander has come out to defend his decisions. He argues that a 'team of experts' has made this 'logical' decision. One might wonder whether it was a 'majority' vote, and whether there were any objectors or critics of the strategy from within the team. Governments, in fact many decision-makers, are reluctant to convey that it was a difficult decision. It would therefore be good to know - who objected to the strategy and why? Have those objectors been vindicated? We might never know if their were any objections. Hopefully the media will ask the question, and if the media will have access to them. I suggest there may have been a poor decision-making process in place. i.e. A democratic one as opposed to an objective one. There is a belief that if you take a democratic vote among experts you will get the best decision. You don't! You get the smarter people stifled by political agendas and committee-talk. There needs to be a process of reconciling conflicting ideas in order to develop the best strategy. The process by which decisions were reached was not developed.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Short term accommodation in Auckland

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If you are flying to Auckland, New Zealand, then you will want a place to stay when you get here. If you are looking for a place to stay prior to boarding a flight, or before you seek accommodation, I recommend Proximity Apartments in Manukau City for several reasons:
1. You get a fully-furnished modern apartment for around $100/night - good for two people
2. There is plenty of after-hours parking around the building
3. You have an easy commute from the airport - its about 15 mins away, and its fairly close to the railway into the city
4. It adjoins the Westfield mall at Manukau City
5. The apartments have an after-hours service so you can check in late, or leave early.
6. There are a variety of restaurants and shops in the mall and in the vicinity. There are several nice restaurant/bars, or even a Wendy's and McDonalds outside of the mall.

For further information refer to this site.

NZ Property Guide Philippine Real Estate Guide Japan Foreclosed Guide

NZ - the land of milk and honey?

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There are a number of problems for NZ population growth...the appeal of Australia stands out as a sore tooth for a number of reasons. The most bleating obvious ones are:
1. NZ'ers love to hate the Ozzies, so it places a hole in their hearts to know that some of them are going off to the land of milk and honey. The land of persistent job growth and relentless balance of payments surpluses. Quite simply the land of higher incomes, job growth, housing prices rises, oh...and did I mention population growth. The population of NZ (mostly immigration) grew just 13,ooo for the year, even after including the better performances by using a rolling average. Australian immigration is growing 300,000 a year, though it might halve due to changes in government policy.

If this was the only reason to prefer Australia...
2. I would suggest Australia has the better record on crime rates...significantly so..but then I lived in the nicer parts of Australia. There are a lot of yobbos in NZ, a lot of speeding, alcoholism, bored youths, predatory natures, etc.
3. Diversity - There must be somewhere in Australia to suit your tastes. Of course it can all be about the amount of money it takes, and sadly Australian property is overpriced because of highly restrict land zoning regulations. It really is a form of slavery that the Australian govt makes you live in the city for jobs, and subjects you to rip off land prices by restricting land releases. Why? Because it wants you to be a 'good taxpayer' for the Commonwealth...to defend freedom in 'far flung' parts of the British empire. On this point, I am almost convinced Australia is not the place to live. Oh, and how could I forget the most evil organisation in the world after the MGB, the Fed, the IRS...yes, the Australian Tax Office. Its tentacles have been know to reach into a man's pants and pull off his testicles in one foul swoop on his manhood....in the pursuit of money. So you see...the choice is clear. There is no clear place to live until there is a revolution in Australia by taxpayers. I don't see that any time soon.

Don't get me wrong...NZ is a nice place to live. If I couldn't go to Australia, NZ would be a good 2nd choice...but for the lack of job growth, I'd probably not opt for an isolated island on the other side of the world (unless it was as big as Australia). If I was an American, I'd probably opt to migrate to the Mid-West, where the only crime is the stuff that stays in the family. If I was a Brit, I'd probably buy a section in the back-blocks of the UK with a commute to a city.

The other problems with NZ are the rising consumption takes rates which fall on retirees to a large extent, like foreigners. The other problem is the incessant winds which blow all the time.

This might be why I never stay in one country but seem to travel between a few. There is no single one good place in the world....you have to keep travelling or repress or the bad points. Most of you are repressors of course.....morally ambivalent repressors.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Was NZ’s Pike River coal mine disaster a blunder?

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I am terribly suspicious of the decisions made culminating in the recent UG coal mine disaster on the West Coast of NZ.
Firstly, I tend to think the company is doing the right thing in terms of the rescue.
I don't know the specifics of the mine layout, but I tend to think mine gas concentrations are going to be lowest immediately after an explosion. The problem is that the ventilation units are likely damaged, so pertinent points in the mine are not accessible until they can develop a drill hole vent to pump air through the desired area. It’s a long wait...but perhaps they will walk out in the meantime. Maybe the 39 miners are injured or trapped; hopefully not fatalities.
Secondly, I am suspicious of the decision-making prior to the accident.
The mine operators ought to have had communications in place. This might point to the fate of the miners, an unfortunate locating of communications, damages to the communications equipment (unlikely) or to a failure by the operator to install such safety measures. This is all speculation of course...better considered after the rescue is completed.
This is why a rescued miner may have pointed to the need for mine inspectors in NZ...as is common in other countries. NZ seems to learn from its disasters. The reality is that NZ has a very small coal mining industry, so perhaps this cost saving was imprudent given the risks involved in coal mining from coal gas explosion/ignition. Basically its easy for coal seam gas to explode at concentrations between 13-45%CH4 (if memory serves me).
If communications were in place and working, and the trapped workers conscious, this could have determined whether rescuers should enter.
I am suspicious because the Pike River Coal publicity machine is trumpeting the “caringness” of its CEO. Seldom is a mine accident the result of an uncaring CEO. More often its caused by CEOs & executives who can't/don't see around corners, i.e. anticipate the dangers, or who place safety after more tangible and immediate concerns like profitability or meeting budgets. This mine was failing to achieve profitability. Were short-cuts taken? Did they promote a ‘caring local’ guy over a competent 'outsider' in order to keep wages down? After all, the local guy was 'friends' with the workers. Suspicious. If I was a journalist, I would be looking at his prior mine experience. Seldom is a miner elevated to a CEO position. One has to ask why? Financial motives? The reason why I say this is because it’s a small mining community where workers can easily extort higher wages...a 'friendly' CEO is the obvious antidote if you care little about safety. Of course safety is not the sole consideration. The question is whether financial considerations were overwhelmingly the big issue. The absence of a mine inspectorate/regulator creates the perfect storm.
The problem as I see it is that no one wants to speak badly of a company when the govt is implicated (as regulator), i.e. Mine safety personal/consultants cannot expect a job in the future if they start criticising company policy. Lax govt regulation is the likely culprit....though unions too could have done more as custodians of worker's interests. Govts are useless regulators..well useless at everything..Why we pay taxes??

Is the Keys government or NZ Oil & Gas (i.e. the largest shareholder in Pike River Coal) to blame? Hard to say..though if I was a journalist, I would be doing a lot of sniffing around whilst the workers are underground. It is not my intent to implicate the company, unions or others. I am developing a scenario. It does need more empirical evidence. I also tend to think companies have a lot of unreasonable burdens placed upon them, and it is middlemen like govt and unions which tend to precipitate these problems. These two agents extort money from people through coercion. They force companies and workers to do things which they would not otherwise do. If the government is to blame, one might be more inclined to blame Helen Clark's administration, since it had 10 years to do something. Keys is less implicated...just 2 years in power, and 1 year dealing with a recession. But he is an investment banker...sorry salesman, so he was never the person to fix the problem. But of course he will have a compelling reason now....after the fact.
There is of course a huge conflict of interest in government being the regulator and the law maker. This conflict is never resolved because it does not serve government to resolve it.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Telecommunications in NZ

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The Commerce Commission has released a report showing that NZ telecom charges are the highest among OECD countries. There are a number of problems:
1. The high cost of data capacity
2. The cross-subsidisation of 'local call' users
3. The requirement for rural customers using data only to have a landline as well, thus they are obliged to pay an extra $56/mth for a service they do not use.

Telecom and Vodafone do not compete much. We currently get the Telecom plan because we do not require a contract. We pay $112/month for 20Gb/mth capacity. The service is reliable enough, though in some areas you can wait for up to 2 years to get a connection. I had better options in the Philippines...a third world country. Australia is about 30% cheaper I believe, though it does depend on your plan and location.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

NZ - closing the gap

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The NZ government seems to have played down the chances of NZ 'closing the income gap' with Australia. The reality is that there are several issues which are driving the widening of the income gap, and there are several issues which will close it. The pertinent factors are:
1. Energy resources: The discovery of large offshore oil & gas resources in offshore NZ basins - give it 10-15 years, but it will eventually attract a lot of capital investment in NZ. There is the prospect of further discoveries being developed sooner in the Taranaki Basin, since this field is already developed. The small size of this nation means any significant discovery is going to have a significant impact on the country.
2. Steel processing technology will eventually result in NZ producing high-titanium/vanadium, high strength steel alloys, but the technology is not quite there. NZ does however have vast resources of titanomagnetite sands between Wanganui and Auckland. It will fight with PNG over market share, and that will be another 10-15 years as well.
3. Business outsourcing - NZ wages are 30% lower than Australia, and the AUD is 0.76 NZD, so NZ is well-positioned as a business outsourcing centre, offering better educated staff than Malaysia, China or the Philippines can possibly offer. The problem is telecommunications in NZ are very expensive, and capacity is tight. Accounting services have more potential. I do however expect such solutions to offer a better outlook in the future. Expect this market to start developing, though perhaps not immediately in VOIP solutions....as NZ is not competitive.
4. Food and timber processing - Of course NZ continues to offer opportunities for value-added food output. I wonder why I cannot buy canned lamb in the Philippines, or anywhere for that matter? There is a Chinese canned lamb. I love lamb! But beef tonight. Bibinba!

I would give NZ another 10-15 years, and then I think people will start flowing back here. I agree with the Labor government. As much as I welcome privatisation and cuts in government spending, free market policies are not going to close the gap. NZ is a small market, so there is no compelling reason to spend money here, other than those opportunities above. Even if you adopt low taxes, no oil company believes any future government will retain such an 'ideological' position, so they will always pragmatically spread their bucks. NZ reforms in the 1980s did nothing to attract capital.
At the end of the day, there are compelling lifestyle reasons to live in Australia which Kiwis will never escape. They are - Australia just has a superior climate. Sydney! I wear a t-shirt or no shirt for 9 months in the year. Try that in NZ! The other is space and culture. NZ is far better when I first came here in 1986, but its still a little on the slow side outside of Auckland. NZ has more crime, but not a big issue. Maybe the greater problem is that there is so little going on that crime and dolphin sighting is all that you can report....lest you think about the outside world. The shorter day and the wind. I swear I lose two hours a day living in NZ, and its often miserably windy going outside. Its not too cold, but the wind is annoying. Australia is blissfully 'cool and breezy'. Australia - paradise...on earth. Now I know why I only bought a summer house here!

'Buying NZ Property – Download the free sample readings!

NZ presents some of the most alluring property in the Western World; particularly given the greater easy of residency, the low cost of property, and the liveability of the country. In addition, there is no capital gains tax, transfer taxes, VAT/GST or wealth taxes in NZ, so rest assured that NZ property is tax-effective! Learn more now!

New Zealand Property Report 2010 - Download the table of contents or buy this 180-page report at our online store for just $US19.95.

Japan Foreclosed Property 2015-2016 - Buy this 5th edition report!

Over the years, this ebook has been enhanced with additional research to offer a comprehensive appraisal of the Japanese foreclosed property market, as well as offering economic and industry analysis. The author travels to Japan regularly to keep abreast of the local market conditions, and has purchased several foreclosed properties, as well as bidding on others. Japan is one of the few markets offering high-yielding property investment opportunities. Contrary to the 'rural depopulation' scepticism, the urban centres are growing, and they have always been a magnet for expatriates in Asia. Japan is a place where expats, investors (big or small) can make highly profitable real estate investments. Japan is a large market, with a plethora of cheap properties up for tender by the courts. Few other Western nations offer such cheap property so close to major infrastructure. Japan is unique in this respect, and it offers such a different life experience, which also makes it special. There is a plethora of property is depopulating rural areas, however there are fortnightly tenders offering plenty of property in Japan's cities as well. I bought a dormitory 1hr from Tokyo for just $US30,000.
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Download Table of Contents here.