Property

Granny flats - turning backyards into gold

John Collett and Caitlin Fitzsimmons Granny flats are proliferating like crazy, at least in NSW where the rules are much more relaxed than in Victoria.

SHARES RACE

Shares Race Week 2: leader plots a map to success

Vanessa Desloires There's been a shake up in the ranks this week, and one clever tipster has shot from fifth to first place on a bet in volatile small cap stocks.

Rate cut puts savers in a pickle, but good for borrowers

Borrowers could soon see their repayments fall considerably if lenders pass on the full cut in the official cash rate.

John Collett Changes in the official cash rate always create winners and losers. Irene Dumer is one of the winners.

QUIRKY INVESTMENTS

Contemporary art collectors seek next big thing

Mirka Mora's 1972 painting Mermaids and Friends sold for $3400.

James Cockington Keen buyers at the latest Leonard Joel fine art auction were ''all looking for the Brett Whiteley of the future''.

Four rules for investing in uncertain times

John Manuel Owing BHP and Rio Tinto isn't diversification, nor is owning a rental property down the road from your own home.

INVESTMENT 101

Motley Fool: compile a watchlist of companies you like and wait for opportunity

Scott Phillips If you understand a company's strategy, management and opportunity, you'll be ready to pounce when the market next throws the baby out with the bathwater.

NOEL WHITTAKER

The beauty of dividends for investors

Noel Whittaker Don't forget that it is the after-tax return of investments that counts and that is where franked dividends come into their own.

INVESTMENT 101

Motley Fool: It's not just about what a company does, but what it has

Scott Phillips In recent weeks, we've been looking at some of the attributes of a great company, on the premise that the better the business, the greater our chance of investment success.

THE MOTLEY FOOL

Motley Fool: never buy from private equity

Myer's share price has never reached the IPO height.

Scott Phillips Any time you read "accepted wisdom", you should ask yourself whether that's simply code for "I just use the same tired cliches as everyone else".

QUIRKY INVESTMENTS

Arthur Fleischmann sculptures for sale after decades in storage

Arthur Fleischmann's Spring. Estimates $2000-$3000.

James Cockington Sculptor Arthur Fleischmann spent a productive 10 years in Sydney, but his works from this period were kept in storage for half a century, and will now be sold.

NEGATIVE GEARING

How investors outgun first home buyers

The auction trail can be dispiriting for first home buyers.

Caitlin Fitzsimmons It's not just that one in three buyers are investors, it's also that they're disproportionately competing with first-home buyers.

INVESTMENT 101

The real definition of risk for investors

Scott Phillips  Throw away the textbooks: investment risk is not the same as volatility.

QUIRKY INVESTMENTS

For sale: art works by late portrait painter Judy Cassab

James Cockington Painter Judy Cassab left "an indelible mark on the story of Australian art", with her portraits of everyone from prime ministers to princesses.

MONEY BRAIN

Time for the next Big Short?

Catherine Robson Few films about finance make you laugh, are touching and leave you more informed than when you went in.

SUPER & FUNDS

Australian shares world beaters over 100 years

John Collett Australian shares have outperformed the global market over the past century, but local investors still need more exposure to international shares.

HOT STOCK

Market 'overreacting' to Ardent Leisure's Texas exposure

James Lennon Ardent Leisure's share price has experienced some headwinds recently due to market-wide falls.

INVESTMENT

Why investors should consider China in the Year of the Monkey

The Year of the Monkey could be an auspicious time to invest in the undervalued Chinese sharemarket.

Ben Hurley The rise of China's middle class makes long-term investment in China a good bet.

INVESTMENT 101

Investment 101: diversification, risk and volatility

The sharemarket has ups and downs but outperforms cash in the long term.

Scott Phillips When designing your investment goals, you need to decide where you want to be, when, and with what level of volatility.

INTELLIGENT INVESTOR

How to spot a future share price disaster

A few minutes studying a financial report can save you from a fall.

James Greenhalgh The first rule of sharemarket investing isn't to make money but not to lose it.

SHARES RACE

Shares Race: Week 3

Reserve Bank governor Glenn Stevens gave a slapdown in central banker speak.

Gareth Hutchens The Dartboard still reigns. Richard Pritchard is still coming second. But they're the only contestants who remain in the black.