When it comes to buying investment property in the UK, location is everything. Right now, average property values in London and the South are falling, whereas ‘up north’ in cities such as Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds and Glasgow, yields are pretty impressive and certainly amongst the best in the UK.
In Manchester, for instance, the value of the average property there has increased by more than 33 per cent within the past five years. With the highest number of students in England outside London, it’s no surprise. The city has undergone a radical transformation over the past decade or so, and was voted ‘Best UK City to Live’ in 2016.
Further north, house prices in Scotland’s biggest city, Glasgow have increased by 32 per cent since 2013. But that’s not all that’s growing. Last year, its economic output was even more than Scotland’s capital, Edinburgh. The country’s media hub, with more than 120 TV companies (the most recent being an outlet of Channel 4), it’s also benefitted hugely from hosting the Commonwealth Games several years ago.
Liverpool landlords have seen growth of more than 23 per cent over the same period. Impressively, the former European Capital of Culture also has the fastest growing economy in the UK. The Fabric District in particular is undergoing plenty of regeneration, and is expected to prove a hot spot in the coming months.
What investments are being made in different areas
But of course, buying a property isn’t just about finding the perfect location – there’s also the not-so-little-matter of finding a house or apartment that is going to appeal to your target market.
If, for instance, you’re interested is student HMOs then cities, such as Glasgow, Edinburgh, Manchester and Liverpool are where you should be focusing on, in areas with large housing (preferably within walking distance of colleges and universities). For buy to let investments interesting young professionals, cities where there are large global companies employing plenty of staff are ideal – especially if those one-or-two-bedroom apartments are located in the city centre. If it’s Serviced Apartments you’re interested in, then this type of location would also work well, especially if you plan on offering them for company lets.
Families tend to prefer the suburbs where there are more parks for children to play in, as well as quieter roads and a more serene lifestyle all round. The essential here is good schools within the vicinity.
Other matters to consider when buying UK property
Stamp Duty is certainly an issue to consider when it comes to buying property in the UK – especially if you plan on investing in more than one apartment or house. The current Conservative government has also mentioned increasing Stamp Duty charges for overseas buyers, so if you’re keen on investing here, then consider doing so now.
Always check out average rentals in the area you’re planning to buy in too. That way you’ll be able to tell straight off whether or not your investment, with the additional expenses it entails, will provide a high enough yield to be sustainable over the long term. That way, you can spend time on more profitable areas – or get a sourcer here in the UK to look for you.