Should you buy a house with your best mate?

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Like most members of Gen Y, the concept of ever earning enough money to buy a house seems completely foreign to me. Unless I win the lottery, or somehow invent the new Facebook, it’s unlikely I’ll ever be able to achieve the great American/Australian/Western dream. Or so I thought.

As it turns out, there’s a steadily growing trend amongst consumers to invest in a property with family or a close friend. If you don’t have a large deposit, buying with family or friends could be an attractive option to tackle the cost of home ownership and help you get into the property market. Co-ownership allows you to combine your earning capacity to borrow more and you’ll only need to pay a portion of the deposit and ongoing property costs.

There are several ways family and friends can help you get into your home sooner, but you should be aware of the risks. I remember reading an article in a women’s magazine (I forget which one) a few years ago, which touted the benefits of buying property with a friend as opposed to a lover. As the article suggested, friendships can often prove far more sturdy that relationships, lowering the risk of awkward post-breakup coffees to discuss mortage splits and whether you mind if he and his new girlfriend shack up in your former love nest. That said, buying a home with a friend or family member isn’t without its own complications and potentially awkward encounters.

If you are considering jointly buying a house with friends or family, be clear about what the arrangement means to each buyer from the beginning. To avoid any disasters and get the most from your shared ownership, consider the following:

Get advice: You should always get independent legal advice before entering into an agreement with another buyer. This will help protect your interests (and your friendships) in case something doesn’t go to plan.

Draw up a contract: Formalise the arrangement so everyone knows where they stand from the beginning. This can be done with a co-ownership agreement. Consider things like how you will pay for repairs and maintenance, how long you plan to keep the property, who will live in the property and on what basis, and how you will resolve disputes.

Have an exit plan: Problems can arise when one owner wants to sell and the others don’t. Make sure you have a written agreement setting out the rules about a sale. For example, the co-owners might have right of first refusal.

Review the deal: Set up a timeline to review the arrangement and talk about any issues that come up. Make sure each party is represented at these meetings and make notes of any discussions. (Hint: meetings are always easier with a glass of wine in hand)

Also consider the co-ownership structure: Will you buy the property as joint tenants or tenants in common? These are vital differences that you’ll need to consider.

In the case of joint tenants, both parties own the entire asset, so if one owner dies, the other owner acquires their interest automatically. This is the structure most common among married couples.

Under tenants in common, each party owns a percentage share of the asset. If one tenant in common dies, they can leave this interest in the property to a new party in their will.

Pooling your resources with family or friends can be a valuable way to get into real estate or grow your property portfolio; which in turn makes for a damn good pick-up line. Make sure you iron out any issues and have adequate legal arrangements in place to get the most from your co-ownership, and you’ll be laughing all the way to your shiny new front door.

[image: tumblr]

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Cool Change

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I’ve had this post sitting in my drafts folder for months now. Originally, it was to be a virtual gust of cool air during a stifling summer heatwave; now, the crisp whites and ice blues reflect the weather outside as it eases its way towards the winter months (“Winter is coming” you guys).

For those of you playing at home, this is the ‘Cool Change’ editorial from Grazia Australia (RIP you stylish vixens) September 10/Issue #201.

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Also, can we please take a moment to reflect on what a babe Montana Cox is? I didn’t watch her ANTM cycle, but I must admit she’s one of those faces that can sell me a magazine, no matter what title it is or what’s inside of it. And doesn’t she look like a baby Miranda in the photo below? Some people…

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Finally, the lack of recent blog posts can mean only one thing: new job! Yep, I’m currently repping Adelaide Film Festival and Adelaide Festival of Ideas in the digital realm, as their Digital Marketing Coordinator. So please, if you like films, ideas, interesting stuff or me, follow us at AFFestival and ideasadelaide on Facebook; @AFF2013 and @AFOI_2013 on Twitter; and @aff_2013 and @afoi_2013 on Instagram.

[images via Chic, Rich Girlss]

When Ted met Sussan

Last week, my bestie/partner in crime, Astrid and I headed down to Adelaide’s shiny new Rundle Plaza for the opening of two very different stores.

Ted Baker launch

The city’s fashion elite flocked to the opening of iconic London label Ted Baker‘s first Adelaide store – a decadent shopfront with a decidedly South Australian twist. As a personable sales assistant explained to Astrid and I, each Ted Baker store is uniquely outfitted to reflect it’s city setting. Therefore, it was only fitting that Ted’s Adelaide home be given a wine-making twist. Wooden planks frame the front window, reflecting the rows of a vineyard, whilst further in shoppers will find hand-blown glass distillery contraptions, spherical metallic wine racks adorning the walls and a counter filled with every bottle-opening tool imaginable.

But what of the clothes themselves? Ted Baker’s garments are the kind of classic items that you’ll spend $200-$300 on and love for forever. Classic structures are livened up with rich hues and eye-catching digital prints – each one unique – in lengths that balance perfectly between office appropriate and tea party approved.

Need more reasons to love Ted? Look no further than his Rolodex of celebrity fans. Disney star and ravishing redhead Bella Thorne rocked the elegantly understated ‘Parisian Birdie’ bodycon sheath at the LA premiere of ‘The Odd Life of Timothy Green’ last August; model-turned-presenter Louise Roe rocked the billowing ‘Attavia’ maxi in Miami last month; and Taylor Swift frocked up to the Tennessee launch of her ‘Wonderstruck’ fragrance in Ted’s chandelier print ‘Marui’ dress. However, I can’t go past Sophia Bush‘s casual concoction of the ‘Margi’ mustard blouse (with adorable beaded Peter Pan collar) and ‘Larinda Decoupage’ skirt. This is the kind of outfit that’ll take you anywhere: pair it with cute biker boots and bare legs for a breezy weekend brunch with friends; or chuck on some opaque tights and black pumps to take you from a day in the office straight to after-work drinks.

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Next door, women’s chain store Sussan has had a brand overhaul and now boasts an array of affordable basics for the twenty-something woman. To be honest, I had Sussan labelled in my head as soccer-mom territory; so I was pleasantly surprised with their A/W13 collection. In particular, they’ve got a badass array of chunky knits in bold colours that’ll brighten up even the dreariest of winter days.

Along with the delicious canapés and bubbles, Astrid and I were lucky enough to receive a $50 gift card to spend on the night. Under the recommendation of the lovely Angela (Sussan’s PR & Marketing maven), Astrid and I embraced our inner Justin Bieber with matching onesies. After testing them out on a girls’ weekend getaway down at Myponga beach, I can honestly say that it kicks the ass of any pyjamas I’ve ever owned. Now if only I could figure out a way to make it office appropriate…

You're the Onesie I want

Sussan travel wallet

I’m also excited to put the stylish organisational capabilities of this travel wallet to use once Alex and I finally embark on our working holiday (set for November – eep!). Featuring slots for your passport, ticket, ID, business cards, credit cards, cash and even a cheeky pen holder, it also comes in teal, magenta and black – if I wasn’t saving to go away, I’d grab one for every outfit!

Thanks to the crew at Ted Baker Adelaide and Sussan Rundle Plaza, along with Angela Crowe for having us.

xo

Detoxin’ with Thug Kitchen

You may have noticed that it’s been a good two months since anything happened on this blog. See, I’ve been working on this little thing called the Adelaide Fringe – the second-biggest arts festival in the world after Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Specifically, I was working on a program called Fringe Benefits: if you’re in Adelaide and aged 18-30, sign up for free here and enjoy discounts and freebies to festivals, gigs, shows, films and other cool shit all year round. You’re welcome.

With the Fringe now finished for another year (*sniff*), I’m suffering through the traditional post-Fringe flu; yearning to detox my body and return to my favourite past-times of drinking gallons of tea and falling asleep at 9pm. These images from Thug Kitchen are inspiring me to get back on the healthy living wagon… and also making me laugh. A lot.

*If you don’t like strong language, look away now

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If you need me, I’ll be in the kitchen, brewing up some tasty lavender lemonade (and sneaking in some gin when you’re not looking)

xx

 

Gemma Correll: Giggles Guaranteed

Poor Alex. Any time I flip open my laptop and fire up the internet (fire up? That’s a bit dramatic), he can expect an endless barrage of “cute” and “hilarious” discoveries to follow. The majority of which he finds only moderately cute and/or hilarious, leaving him frustrated and me exceptionally sooky.

However! Today I stumbled upon the illustrations of a lady named Gemma Correll. Falling immediately in love, I demanded Alex pause his game of DOTA (Death of the Ancients, for those of you playing at home) and pay attention to the cute, hilarious illustrations I’d found. And do you know what he did? He laughed. At every picture I showed him. Then followed them up with a couple of conceded, “that’s quite funny”‘s.

Below I’ve compiled a few of my favourites (along with a list as to why Ms. Correll and I should become penpals) so that you too, dear reader, might enjoy a chuckle or two:

Five reasons Gemma and I should totes be besties:

1. She clearly appreciates a good word. For example: Albuquerque – quoted in her FAQ’s as being her favourite word. Mine is Pudding (stolen from Seth Cohen). Miranda’s is Husk. We should all get together, drink wine and make funny noises with our mouths.

2. We both love cats. Not as much as this lady though.

HAPPY NEW YEAR! 2013! Yeah! Let’s do this.

3. We both enjoy a good pun or several.

4. We’re both big fans of beautiful men. See: RuPaul’s Drag Race; David Bowie.

5. Gemma seems to love drawing food. I love eating food.

Should you require even more giggles, you can find Gemma on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, InstagramTumblr, or on her blog. And if you like what you see, I highly recommend checking out the work of Able & Game and Kate Pullen as well – two incredibly talented illustrators (well, technically 3) from right here in Australia.

xo