Firstly you need to identify who or what is going to own the portfolio. The importance of this decision cannot be underestimated and the wrong decision could cause you plenty of grief down the track.
The major things to consider include:
- How to best control your assets
- Protecting your assets against any litigation claims
- Keeping flexibility in order to be able to distribute profits and maximise tax benefits
- Understanding the expenses you will need to meet to maintain the structure.
This process may take you some time in order to determine the best structure for you. There are several different structures that you can hold your properties in including your own name, companies, unit trusts, family trusts and discretionary trusts, for example.
It’s important to make sure that you get this right from the beginning because it can be very costly to try and change ownership once your portfolio is established.