Building for the future

By Our Reporter
Sukhvinder Singh and Mukhtiar Singh Ramgarhia

Sukhvinder Singh and Mukhtiar Singh Ramgarhia, directors of DGN Homes, on why Adelaide is the place to invest

They are among the most talked about names in real estate today, but Sukhvinder Singh and Mukhtiar Singh Ramgarhia can tell you they worked their way here, literally from the ground up.

Sukhvinder, who moved to Australia in 1997, is from Chandigarh, and although with an electrical engineering background, worked as a farmhand, in wineries, and drove taxis and buses. “It was then that I got a chance to try my hand at carpentry, tiling, concreting, and landscaping and that got my interest in building,” says Sukhvinder, who then went on to do his Cert 4 and diploma in building and construction. He now holds a supervisors and builders licence in SA and VIC, where he also has offices.

Mukhtiar on the other hand, comes from a family of carpenters. “I’ve been working with my hands since I was 15 years old, and even did projects in Bahrain related to concreting and carpentry,” says Mukhtiar, who moved here in 2008, from Kapurthala. “I did second fix carpentry in VIC and SA,” he says.

Both Sukhvinder and Mukhtiar believe it was their hands-on work experience that made them naturals in the real estate business, and that was what made the foundation of their company DGN Homes solid. “When I was working as a carpenter for some builders, I noticed they had no knowledge of the work they were doing,” says Mukhtiar. “They were just good time and people managers. We knew we had the product knowledge as well,” says Sukhvinder. “I knew with my engineering background and Mukhtiar’s skills in carpentry we could create a successful building company,” he adds.

Sukhvinder and Mukhtiar, directors of the hugely successful DGN Homes, get talking to The Indian Sun on their passion for building.

🏠 What makes you both so passionate about real estate investing?

Well, it’s simple. Property can deliver long term returns if the value of the property increases over time. And of course, there’s also the potential to receive rent as a source of income before the eventual sale.

Unlike investing in the share market, where the companies you invest in generally have their own management, you manage the important decisions for your investment property, including ways to increase its value, such as with renovations.

🏠 Give us the history of DGN Homes.

DGN Homes is a relatively new building company which started in Adelaide in 2016 and expanded into Melbourne 2018. Both of us have over 20 years of experience in the building industry in Australia and overseas. Our initial goal is to establish a reputation of excellence in building quality and affordable homes. These goals will be the foundation for further expansion.

Our vision is to build or renovate quality and cost effective homes, which are constructed on time and within the defined budget. In 2017, we saw an opportunity in Victoria for the expansion of the business interstate. Recently we commenced our first home in Melbourne; this is a great achievement for the small team at DGN Homes. We will continue to expand in both states, and plan to recruit permanent staff to the Melbourne office, promote the business locally at multicultural community events.

DGN Homes is an inclusive employer. We employ staff/contractors and workers from diverse backgrounds, supporting particularly new migrants who are starting out in the construction industry.

🏠 What are your thoughts on the current trends in real estate? Are you expecting a further dip or do you think the market will bounce back?

With RBA cutting the official cash rate by 25 basis points to the new cash rate to 1.25% this will give investors’ confidence to invest in real estate. Recent falls in house prices in major capital cities appear to have plateaued. In some markets the rate of price decline has slowed and auction clearance rates have increased. Because of the low mortgage rates there is strong competition for borrowers of high credit quality. The rate cut will be welcomed by the property market after sustained price declines in cities such as Sydney and Melbourne in the lead up to last month’s federal election. The combination of the Coalition returning to Government, no changes to negative gearing, continued easing of finance and the first home buyer low deposit scheme, will drive real estate price growth.

🏠 From an investment perspective, can you tell us where is a good place to buy in Adelaide?

Stick to the middle and outer suburbs at the moment as they offer both affordability and better price growth, rather than in the inner city suburbs.

Investment property hotspots include suburbs around Marion, Thebarton, Richmond, Largs North, and Rostrevor.

🏠 For our readers in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, could you take us through SA’s real estate landscape in brief? What kind of growth do you get there?

Adelaide is one of the most affordable cities in Australia and offers a relaxing lifestyle with thriving arts and culture, and food and bar scenes—it offers great liveability.

Adelaide has managed to dodge much of the “property market crashing” that Sydney and Melbourne have been bearing the brunt of, and with low interest rates and relatively affordable housing compared to the rest of the country’s capitals, the past five years has seen a 3.8% per annum rise in the average house price in Adelaide.

The conditions that supported the moderate price growth in Adelaide in recent years are forecast to continue, and even slightly improve. Prices remain relatively affordable and the rate of population growth is expected to improve. Dwelling commencements are beginning to ease and should remain suppressed for some time as the current excess of dwelling stock is progressively absorbed. Overall, Adelaide’s median house price is forecast to grow by 12% over the forecast period to reach $555,000 by June 2021, which will be a similar rate of price growth (4% pa on average) to that seen in recent years.

🏠 How about the rental market? With more students moving to the area, it should be a hot market?

The Adelaide rental market is strongly favouring landlords with a tight vacancy rate of 1.2%, seeing rents in the region rising rapidly. Rents have increased by 2.6% for Adelaide houses to sit at an average of $380 per week, while units have seen a 3.4% rise at $300 per week. I would predict that rents will continue to rise. Students will find it challenging to find suitable rental at a reasonable rate. Shared rental is usually favoured by students to make it more affordable.

🏠 What have you got planned for DGN Homes?

To create a jobs for our new generation in construction industry and to expand our business in other states and regions as well and get into commercial projects like community aged care and child care.


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