Property editor of the NZ Herald

What's stopping us getting rich? Multi-millionaire landlord explains

Property investor Ron Hoy Fong, outside one of his properties on Gillies Ave in Epsom. Photo/Jason Oxenham
Property investor Ron Hoy Fong, outside one of his properties on Gillies Ave in Epsom. Photo/Jason Oxenham

What is stopping New Zealanders from getting rich?

That's the question a $23 million 31-property owning Auckland landlord, Ron Hoy Fong is asking at a seminar in Auckland on Saturday.

The answer? New Zealanders are hesitant to invest money.

"New Zealand homeowners are obsessed with keeping their jobs which also keeps them poor. We have a national obsession with keeping a job which stands for keeping you just over broke.

"When people work, they live according to their income and they spend it. They're not investing it. They're on a treadmill. The more they work, the more they spend. They don't invest.

"When it comes to retirement, it's too late for them make any reasonable investment so they have a passive income during their retirement because the pension is not enough," Hoy Fong said.

He encouraged homeowners to use equity in their own homes, borrow against that and invest the money.

"There are too many people now sitting on goldmines and have good equity in their homes that they are not leveraging to plan for their financial future," Hoy Fong said.

Investors like him have been criticised by Radio Live's Duncan Garner who has asked what hope buyers have against the professionals.

"No wonder other Kiwis are missing out on houses. We can't compete with organised property investment groups who are openly targeting central Auckland properties," Garner has said.

But the landlord blames our job culture and education system for not encouraging more people to get wealthy.

"Not enough thought is given to how to make every cent of your money work for you. New Zealanders lack financial knowledge in our formal education system. It breeds generations of skilled Kiwis who have very rudimentary knowledge of money management and financial planning," Hoy Fong says.

Any children talented in financial management will have their interest and growth opportunities snuffed out by the system, he says.

The third-generation New Zealander and Justice of the Peace who has a Queen's Service Medal says we're obsessed with paying off our mortgages without leveraging or planning for our financial futures.

Hoy Fong will speak at about 11am at the Waipuna Hotel and Conference Centre on Saturday at a wealth creation seminar in conjunction with the Auckland Property Investors Association. Registrations must be made in advance at www.ronovationz.co.nz/bradsugars

- NZ Herald

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