Crystal Palmer has blossomed since she made her first investment almost 20 years ago. In celebration of International Women’s Day on March 8, we chat to Your Investment Property’s 2017 Strategic Investor of the Year Award winner on balancing her property pursuits with her growing family.

“I’ve always felt incredibly rewarded by property. I’ve been physically able to see the rewards of the commitment and hard work I’ve put in, particularly from a renovation perspective. Not only is it providing accommodation for others, but it is paying a mortgage off or supplementing a lifestyle at the same time,” she shares.

Her love of property has only grown, despite obstacles faced along the way.

“Investing will continually throw obstacles at you – such as issues with renovation, property management, tenants and insurance claims or settlements,” she says.

“But in the last five years or so years, the biggest obstacle by far has been financing. With changes in various credit policies handed down by APRA, lending and conditions around it have made it very challenging to keep moving forward.

“Although my strategy has remained consistent, every deal provides a new challenge or option to try something new, whether it’s talking to new people or researching and visiting new areas. I’ve experienced the various benefits of investing in property numerous times, and that certainly helps fuel the passion even more!”

Crystal believes that ambition and experience are the two things that make women successful in property.

“I think women make fantastic investors – you certainly have to be driven because it is a very competitive industry, but it boosts your credibility as a serious and successful investor in the eyes of others once you are out there either doing renovations yourself, speaking to agents and trades or making critical decisions on your own basis time after time,” she says.

“The biggest impact of being a woman in the industry is the ability to show other women that they too can achieve that. They do not need to feel intimidated by the idea of playing a part in a heavily male-dominated and stereotyped industry.”

Happily married with a young daughter and another baby on the way, Crystal is showing other women that it is possible to be a powerhouse investor and an involved mum.

“Women thrive off other inspiring women which can help them realise that there is no reason they can’t do the same thing. I think it sets a fantastic example of what is possible, even whilst juggling a career, family and life at the same time,” she says.

“Property investing has made me a stronger, more resilient and confident person with everything I have gone through. It has allowed me to spend less time at work and have more time for family, travelling and all the things I love doing!”