Investment Showdown - Shares vs. Property

You've likely found yourself at the crossroads of investment decisions, pondering whether to dive into the Australian stock market or delve into the property sector. Both avenues offer unique advantages and challenges, and understanding them is key to making a well-informed decision.

This article aims to unravel the complexities of investing in Australian shares and property, helping you navigate these waters with greater confidence.

Understanding Australian Shares

The Australian stock market, a dynamic and multifaceted arena, presents a variety of opportunities for investors. In 2022, the market experienced a rollercoaster ride, ending with a -7.2% annualised return for equities when looking at the All Ordinaries index​​. However, the landscape is ever-changing, and as of 2023, most research houses expect to see an annualised return of 6 – 8% over the next decade​​. These numbers are a testament to the market's potential for growth, albeit with inherent volatility.

Pros of Investing in Shares

  • Liquidity: Shares offer the ease of buying and selling, making them an attractive option for those seeking flexibility.
  • Diversification: The stock market provides access to a diverse range of sectors, reducing the risk associated with investing in a single asset class.
  • Dividend Returns: Many companies pay dividends, offering a regular income stream in addition to potential capital gains.
  • Tax Advantages: Features like franking credits can offer tax benefits to investors.

Cons of Investing in Shares

  • Market Volatility: Shares are subject to market fluctuations, which can be influenced by a range of external factors.
  • Complexity: Successful stock market investing often requires a deep understanding of market trends and financial statements.
  • Emotional Decision-Making: Investor psychology can be heavily influenced by market news and trends, leading to potentially irrational decisions. The liquidity of shares can also make this much easier than with property investments.
  • Leverage: Shares are typically purchased without the use of leverage, as this can create margin calls, which can be beyond the risk tolerance of many investors.

Delving into Australian Property Investment

The Australian property market has shown resilience and growth over the years. Over the past 5 years, we have seen strong growth in many parts of the country, and the rebound in the Australian property market even over the previous 12 months has been remarkably strong​​. Historically, since 1900, median house prices have grown by approximately 6+% per annum on a compound basis. These figures highlight the potential for long-term capital growth in property investment, particularly when factoring in the compounding power of leverage on those returns.

For example, you may only be contributing $240,000 and borrowing $800,000 to purchase a $1,000,000, even when purchase costs are factored in. A 6% return on the $1,000,0000 property value represents quite an attractive return on cash.

Pros of Investing in Property

  • Stability: Property is often considered a stable investment with less volatility compared to shares.
  • Tangible Asset: Real estate is a physical asset, which some investors may find more reassuring than intangible assets like shares.
  • Rental Income: Properties can provide a steady income through rent, contributing to the investor's cash flow.
  • Capital Growth: Over time, property values can increase, offering substantial returns upon sale.

Cons of Investing in Property

  • High Initial Capital: Purchasing property requires a significant initial investment, which can be a barrier for some investors.
  • Maintenance Costs: Property ownership involves ongoing costs, such as repairs, maintenance, and property management fees.
  • Illiquidity: Unlike shares, property cannot be quickly converted into cash.
  • Market Sensitivity: The property market can be affected by various economic and regulatory changes.

Comparative Analysis

Investing in either shares or property requires a balance of risk and reward. While shares offer potential for quick returns and liquidity, they come with higher volatility. Property, on the other hand, provides stability and tangible assets but requires a larger initial outlay and carries maintenance responsibilities. The choice between the two should align with your investment goals, risk tolerance, and time horizon.

Diversifying your portfolio with both shares and property can mitigate the risks associated with each investment type. A balanced portfolio can provide both the stability of property and the liquidity of shares, potentially leading to more consistent returns over time.

Tying it Together

Your journey in the investment world is unique, and making the right choice can be challenging. If you're contemplating your next move in the Australian investment landscape and need expert advice, consider booking a complimentary meeting with our Advisors at Ally Property Group. We're here to help you navigate these decisions with tailored advice that aligns with your personal financial goals. Don't hesitate to reach out and take the first step towards a more informed and strategic investment future.


Embark on your property investment journey with Ally Property Group, your trusted ally in Australia's real estate market. Our expert advisers are dedicated to crafting personalised investment strategies for Australian expats and residents alike, aiming to enhance your portfolio and maximise returns. Start building your wealth with Ally Property Group, where strategic insights, analysis and modelling leads to prosperous investments.

We’re more than just property advisers. As Australian expats ourselves, we've navigated the intricate world of property investment both at home and abroad. With a legacy rooted in financial services, we offer a holistic, transparent, and strategic approach, ensuring you're equipped with the knowledge and confidence to make informed decisions.

Book an obligation-free, complimentary consultation here today.

General Information Warning: The information contained herein is of a general nature only and does not constitute in any way, personal advice. You should not act on any recommendation without considering your personal needs, circumstances, and objectives. We recommend you obtain professional property investment advice specific to your circumstances.

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