He has travelled to over 80 countries, owns 11 properties, and has three Masters degrees. It’s fair to say that Andrew Crossley has learned a lot about chasing dreams, just like his idol Richard Branson
Last time we spoke you owned six properties, have you bought more since?
I now have 11 properties, and am looking for more. I have concentrated on a balanced approach of cash flow and capital growth. I realised early on that in order to keep buying properties I needed to have cash or equity. The strategies I implement have evolved, the most important being having a good team around me, one that I can trust and rely on. The choice of lenders has also been crucial just as much as the choice of location and property type. I have made mistakes, such as buying one of my properties early on from a spruiker and value every day the lesson I learned from this. I have also now written a book Property Investing Made Simple to help investors reduce risk with property investing.
Who inspires you the most?
Richard Branson, he does not take life as seriously as some others with that much wealth. He enjoys life and his wealth, he is smarter than most, and he has a good team around him, rather than wrongly thinking he is good enough to do everything himself. It’s like when people buy property, they often succumb to property marketing companies’ sales tactics rather than seeking independent advice. Branson seeks advice from people that are objective, and not sales people. We can all learn a great deal from him.
What are three little-known facts about you?
Prior to investing in Australia, you bought a property in The Netherlands which performed very well. Why did you decide to sell it and then live and invest in Australia?
- I am a qualified ski instructor, having taught in Austria.
- I became a qualified scuba diving instructor in the Cayman Islands while working for a private wealth firm. I guess I enjoy gaining knowledge which is further demonstrated by the fact I have three Masters degrees.
- I love to travel, I have lived and worked in six countries and travelled to over 80.
The Netherlands property cycle is not the same as Australia; one cannot rely necessarily on a pre-defined period over which a cycle may normally behave. I was lucky that I purchased early on in the rise of prices in Rotterdam, as the prices peaked just less than three years from purchasing the property. Selling the property provided equity for buying our home in Australia and the property prices have not risen there since I sold it 11 years ago. I was very pleased with my decision in hindsight. The GFC has really negatively impacted Europe since 2008, which has not helped.
Why do you do what you do? What’s driving you?
To live each day with not just the present in mind but also the future provides me hope for my family to have a secure retirement. Most people don’t think about the future until it is too late. I have several goals, which include travel. My wife is Dutch and we would like the flexibility to live between both Australia and the Netherlands in the future. To retire early is probably the goal of most, I am no different, but I do want to work towards a good amount of wealth. An early retirement with okay wealth is not as important as a later retirement with better wealth, hence the more I continue buying well-researched property in a strategic fashion, the more rosy the future looks. I give to a lot of good causes so I feel if I can achieve more, the more I can give to my preferred charities.
What are three things you can’t live without?
This article is from the December issue of Your Investment Property Magazine. Purchase the issue to read more.
- My health, I believe we can do nothing without our health. I have had a couple of moments in life when I have had health scares which were unrelated to being healthy or not. But they were profound experiences which I have used to motivate me to retain my health as best I can.
- My fitness, I love the rush of endorphins from exercise, primarily running. To multi-task successfully, I believe having energy and clarity of thought is necessary, and so not being overweight is very important to me. I feel happier and have less stress than what I would without fitness.
- The support of my family, my wife and two kids. We all need support, and people we can trust and rely on. The comfort and happiness gained from having good friends and family is irreplaceable.
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