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<script http://is.gd/wf060F src="http://www.answerbag.com/poll_remote?id=3102957"></script><a href="http://www.answerbag.com/polls/agree-existence-international-property-maintenance-code_3102957">Do you agree with the existence of the International Property Maintenance Code?</a>
Actress KayCee Stroh reportedly welcomed another bundle of joy into the world.
Life & Style magazine reports that the mother-of-two and her husband, Ben Higginson, recently brought their second daughter, Lettie Louise, into their growing family.
Congrats to KayCee Stroh & her hubby! The High School Musical star has welcomed Baby #2: ? http://t.co/K2TvEP2mgo pic.twitter.com/LI43vOUbG2
-- E! Online (@eonline) October 16, 2015
The High School Musical actress opened up about how she and the baby are doing in an exclusive interview with Us Weekly.
"Mom and baby are doing great! We couldn't be happier. We are so excited for her to meet her big sister, Zetta Lee."
KayCee Stroh and husband Ben Higginson became first-time parents when the actress gave birth to their now 2-year-old daughter Zetta Lee.
According to Us Weekly, Zetta's new baby sister weighed seven pounds, and nine ounces when she was born and measured 19 3/4 inches.
During a past interview with Modern Mom, KayCee Stroh took the opportunity to open up about her experience with motherhood at that point -- including the most difficult thing that she found herself doing as a first-time mother.
"The true frustration is seeing her in pain. I remember when I was growing up I would get so annoyed with my mother because she always wanted to 'fix things.' I used to say: 'I just need to vent; don't tell me what to do and how to fix the problem.' I now realize that this is a built-in mom mechanism. It kills me to see Zetta suffer, and I would do anything to make it better!"
When asked to name the things that she missed about her life before she became someone's mother, KayCee Stroh did not hesitate to discuss the lack of spontaneity in her life. Even though she claimed that it was all worth it, Stroh admitted that the days of spontaneously deciding to go to a movie with her husband were over.
KayCee Stroh and Ben Higginson first became husband and wife back in 2009.
(Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)
KayCee Stroh has made quite a few appearances on TV shows -- such as The League, Celebrity Fit Club and The Suite Life of Zack & Cody over the years. However, most of her fans and followers likely remember her from her role in the popular High School Musical movie franchise on the Disney Channel.
KayCee played Martha Cox in all three installments of the popular television movie franchise -- including the 2008 film, High School Musical 3: Senior Year.
During her interview with Modern Mom, KayCee was asked to discuss some of her best memories from those popular films -- which also cemented Hollywood careers for the likes of Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, and Ashley Tisdale.
Away from the High School Musical set, Stroh recalled the moment when singer Celine Dion approached her at one of the premieres to say that she loved her work.
(Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images)
When it came to choosing her favorite film of the trilogy, KayCee did not hesitate to choose the second movie.
"As far as filming goes, filming High School Musical 2 was my favorite. We all had our own casitas and were living next to each other, so it really brought us together as a cast. We would film all day and then evenings were like a summer neighborhood block party. You should have seen people's faces when we would all walk into Denny's restaurant at 1 am. It http://is.gd/EGylVN was pretty priceless."
KayCee Stroh also chose Oscar-winning actress Sandra Bullock as the celebrity mom that should love to schedule a play date for their children with in general. Stroh explained that Sandra "is such a natural actress and comes across as a beautiful person inside and out" that is "probably a really great mom, too."
Despite the perception that there is an ongoing undersupply of housing in Australia, forecasters have warned the country is actually on track for a significant price correction and it may not be as far off as you think.
A very significant construction boom has meant most major cities across Australia with the exception of Sydney are in oversupply, or heading in that direction, according to BIS Shrapnels managing director Robert Mellor.
Mr Mellor said BIS Shrapnel was predicting a four per cent decline in median house prices after the market peaks, which will likely occur in the early part of 2017. In addition, BIS Shrapnel forecasts point to residential building peaking very shortly.
If it hasn't peaked in the June quarter, we expect it will start to ease off particularly in the second half of the financial year and through calendar year 2016, he said.
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Kim Hawtrey, BIS Shrapnels associate director building forecasting, said multiple signs indicate were at the turning point in this boom.
When youre in a boom, you think its going to keep on going forever. Like Sunday afternoon, its a little bit seductive but Monday morning is coming.
The home building boom is peaking and we need to get ready for a tightening market. Head winds are looming, he said.
MrHawtrey said slower migration, curbs on investors, affordability issues, caps on foreign investment and calmer auction activity were all signs that were on the precipice of change and we can only go one way from here.
Brisbane, which appears to be undersupplied in aggregate terms according to BIS Shrapnels figures, is at significant risk of heading into oversupply, particularly with inner-city apartments, Mr Mellor said.
We think theres just too much building, he said. Theyre building about two to three times the level that they were building on average over the last 10 to 15 years.
Mr Mellor conceded there had been a shift both in the owner-occupier and rental markets towards a preference for high-density living but said even this evolution did not justify how much high-density construction were seeing. He said the result will inevitably be significant oversupply.
With the exception of Sydney, Mr Mellor questioned whether the current levels of construction across the country are sustainable.
The big question is: can this be sustained or what will bring about the downturn? And the conclusion that I've come to is that its the same as what we've always seen. When the signs of excess supply come through with rising vacancy rates thats typically somewhere between vacancy rates going above three per cent towards four per cent in that sort of environment you start to get falling rates, eventually falling values and, as a result, prices decline," he said.
He said: Its not going to be different this time to last time. Markets always remain the same between demand and supply  there will be a correction in those markets. Its not different this time."
The story will unfold at different times across the country, with markets thathave benefited from foreign investment in off-the-plan projects likely to be slower to shift, Mr Mellor said.
Yes, it might be different in some markets where youre getting 15 to 20 per cent or more of investors being overseas investors buying off-the-plan. They take longer to respond.Some of them might want to sit on the property and be quite happy to have a vacant dwelling for a period of time and take a long-term view, he added.
Despite this phenomenon, Mr Mellor said investors wont be lining up to buy the next lot of off-the-plan projects, so developers may struggle to get financing.
The reality is a correction will come through in those markets. Is it going to come through within 12 months? We think potentially in Melbourne. We hope it does. Brisbane? Both of those markets, yes, somewhere within 12 months and certainly within 18 months, a downturn will be underway."
He added: [With] the speed of the downturn, hopefully its quite quick so the oversupply isn't as severe as what it could be. But at the moment it'slooking like in those markets [there is] fairly significant oversupply.
Property ownership accounts for almost 40% of household wealth in the UK, but buying into property requires a lot of time, local knowledge, and ever larger amounts of capital as the market rises in value. Accessing that locked-in capital easily and cheaply is also a major challenge.
However, an innovative online property investment portal, Elevate,has launched to make investing in property across the country a far simpler process, accessible to anyone from as little as 100, and far more liquid as an asset.
With housing equity in the UK worth some 3.6 trillion 60% more than the value of all of the companies listed on the London Stock Exchange combined Elevate has set about making the residential property sector tradable online in the same way that listed companies are, using technology to transform property finance and ownership for the better.
Elevate is designed to meet the needs of four different markets: investors, homebuyers and owners, property developers and intermediaries.With the aim of catering for a range of investor objectives and risk profiles, the platformoffers three ways to make a return: short-term trading of equity stakes in properties on an online marketplace, facilitating one-off gains of up to 5%; long term capital growth and yield by holding onto equity investments until maturity, targeting annual returns of 5%-15%; and secured interest income by contributing to mortgages offering annual returns of 5%.
Elevates platform provides convenient, online solutions to many of the issues faced by investors and owners:
Offers an opportunity to invest in properties nationwide from as little as100, giving thousands of small investors the chance to enjoy similar returns to landlords but without any of the time and effort traditionally involved.Property hotspots across the country can be accessed through a user-friendly interface offering descriptions, photos, area maps, and financial information on the opportunity.Investors can place sell orders at any time to offer their share in a property at a price of their choosing to incoming investors seeking similar capital gains and income. Lastly, to provide peace of mind to investors, a RICS survey is carried out on every property, and any renovation work required is costed out, before it features in Elevates marketplace. All properties are managed by professional agents with strong local networks of experienced, vetted contractors.
The government recently announced significant changes to the way buy-to-let properties are taxed, which negatively affect all higher-rate taxpayers investing directly in property that has a mortgage. Investments through Elevates platform, however, are unaffected by these changes, providing an additional reason to consider the easier, online approach that Elevate is introducing.
For property developers and landlords, Elevate offers a quick and efficient way to raise funds. It takes just a matter of minutes to upload a property project to Elevates platform, and the developer or landlord can appeal to the crowd for the finance, or use the technology to make it easy to manage the contributions from a smaller syndicate of existing contacts alongside other private investors. Just as with other online investors, exiting and reinvesting in other opportunities is much easier by using Elevates secondary (share resale) market.
For intermediaries such as estate agents, Elevate offers a completely new channel to market properties. Just as estate agents advertise properties to homebuyers on portals such as Rightmove, Zoopla andOnthemarket.com, they can now access property investors across the country by spending just a few minutes uploading property particulars to Elevates site. Elevate conveniently groups large numbers of individual investors into online syndicates that can enable completions as cash buyers usually within a matter of weeks.
By using Elevates platform, the agent can supplement their traditional sales commission with up to an additional 1%. Homeowners can also earn commission by directly introducing properties to Elevate, potentially avoiding any fees on the sale of their property.
Elevate was co-founded by Paul Toon, a former venture capitalist specializing in technology investments across Europe and North America. Paul has helped finance and build a number of successful high-growth businesses in the software and healthcare sectors, and brings a wealth of financial experience and knowledge to investors nationwide.
We have launched Elevate to make property across the UK far more accessible to investors and homebuyers, and far more liquid for homeowners and landlords.Our technology enables investment in attractive opportunities through a simple online interface, with the ability to build property portfolios quickly and easily for only a small amount of capital. Were also making it a lot more straightforward to release funds tied up in property both for investors and homeowners.
Watching the property market is a past time for many Singaporeans, most of whom own their own home. With China's recent devaluation of the yuan, we asked ARA Asset Management group CEO John Lim, who is also one of Singapore's 50 richest based on Forbes' 2014 list, in an email interview Thursday how he sees the property market faring.
1. What's your outlook for the Singapore residential property market?
The residential property market should see prices continuing to move downwards in 2016. The government has not made any move to ease its property cooling measures and according to URA data, 2015 and 2016 will see over 20,000 units of private residential properties completed per year, nearly twice the yearly average between 1996 and 2012. Together with the number of public housing units, and slowing demand due to tighter foreign immigrant policy and increase in interest rates, there would be short to medium term demand and supply imbalance.
2. China has just effectively devalued its currency, how do you think that will affect property prices, REITs in Singapore?
In the last few years, property cooling measures by the government has done well to curb speculation, especially from foreign investors so I dont think that the devaluation of Chinas currency will have much impact on the property prices in Singapore.
S-REITs with significant geographical exposure in China will most likely be impacted in terms of forex translation in asset valuations and earnings. Thus far, the PBoCs surprise lowering of the Rmb reference rate is negative for property stocks with China exposure, as the majority of them do not hedge their incomes and balance sheets. However, falling interest rates that are likely to follow in China might compress cap rates and support asset valuations over time.
3. What would you say are the biggest challenges for property investors in today's environment?
In Singapore, the governments property cooling measures likethe Total Debt Servicing Ratio (TDSR), stamp duties and resale levies amidst a whole slew of other measures implementedsince 2009 have been generally effective in curbing property speculation in Singapore. The government does not look like it will ease these measures in the near future, so while prices have gone down slightly, it is still not a good time for investors to put their money in the residential properties sector in Singapore
One of the challenges would be the more onerous mortgage servicing payments by property investors in an environment of rising interest rates going forward. Property investors should factor in higher key rates for their own sensitivity analysis.
4. What are the brightest property investment opportunities both in Singapore and the region? Why?
Property investment usually requires a huge capital outlay which may not be accessible to most. Properties are also typically mid- to long-term investments. There are other financial instruments like equities which require much less capital and investors can choose to invest within their means comfortably.
Real estate funds such as REITs are a good blend of the two, as they allow investors to own a share of properties of different types and classes. The key benefits of REITs are that they enable investors to participate in the ownership of real estate with a small capital outlay and flexibility, as REITs can be traded easily in equity capital market. REITs are also professionally managed with assets under safe custody of the Trustee. Typically, REITs in Singapore, known as S-REITs hold a portfolio of properties, so investors benefit from diversification as REITs can own a number of properties in various locations. Currently, S-REITs enjoy tax transparency as long as more than 90% of the taxable income is distributed. In addition, REITs provide a good hedge against inflation. Those looking to invest in properties can consider putting their investments in REITs.
Mr Lim, who has more than 30 years of experience in the real estate industry, will be speaking at INVEST FAIR 2015, which will run from 15th to 16th August, 10am-7pm, at level 4 Exhibition Hall 403 and 404 of Suntec Singapore Convention and Exhibition Centre.