Why Are So Many Londoners Buying a One Way Ticket to Manchester?

Traditionally, cities like Greater Manchester might have been concerned about a ‘brain-drain’ to London, but new figures reveal that a record number of Londoners are actually making the move North – with 10,200 people settling in Greater Manchester last year.

Exclusive analysis conducted by Reach PLC’s Data Unit reveals that growing numbers of people are leaving the capital to live in the country’s third biggest city and its surrounding areas, such as South Manchester.

Last year, 10,200 people left London to move to Greater Manchester – while 8,870 people made the opposite move. This resulted in London suffering a loss of 1,330 people – more than three per day.

According to new data from the Office for National Statistics, that’s the highest loss to the region that London has suffered in at least five years. It’s an impressive feat when you consider that Manchester is approximately 210 miles away from the capital.

The BBC’s decision to move to Salford Quays from its previous base in west London has made towns like Altrincham and surrounding areas in South Manchester very popular. Large members of staff from the corporation are choosing to live in the towns, due to their ideal location for commuters who work in Salford and the city centre.

Voted Regional Winner in the Sunday Times “Best Places To Live in the UK 2018”, Altrincham is one of the premier towns among several affluent residential areas. Residents benefit from easy access to Manchester and the Trafford Centre, whilst being surrounded by leafy suburbs, beautiful countryside and excellent local amenities.

A local reporter and her friends are among the numbers who have moved to Manchester from London in recent years. She had left the region for London in 2011, before heading back in 2015. She said:

“I moved back to Manchester three years ago. Over the past two years, friends who are actually born and bred Londoners have followed suit and are living up here.

“In London, I lived in the living room of a two-bed flat in Zone 3, with two other girls. It was tiny and really noisy. For the same amount of rent I now live in a Manchester city centre flat. In London, I had to catch a train and two tubes for the 7 mile journey to my office, spending £40 a week to top up my Oyster card. Now it’s just a 20 minute drive and I can afford to have a car and go on holidays.

“I think people are becoming aware of the fact it is no longer necessary to build your career in the capital. There are many opportunities for graduates in Manchester.

“One key reason why more people are moving to Greater Manchester from London is the price of property, which remains substantially lower. The average home in the North West of England costs £155,868 – some 67.8% less than the average £484,584 it costs to buy a home in London.
Overall, London is hemorrhaging more people than ever, suffering a net loss of 106,620 people to other parts of the UK in 2017. Some 225,690 people moved to the capital while 332,310 left. That’s a huge increase from the net loss of 50,670 people in 2012.

Stephen Clarke, senior economic analyst, said: “London is a net exporter of people to the rest of the UK. This is likely due to high housing costs, with figures suggesting that people are leaving London when they have children and want to put down roots – a struggle given property prices in the capital. London needs to get a handle on its high housing costs if this ‘living standards exodus’ is to be stopped.”

As a property investor/developer in these areas of South Manchester I can confirm first hand, that the rise for good quality accommodation has risen exponentially over the last 5 years. This is why I focused my attention on these areas and pride myself on finding such properties for both residents and investors.