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The Urban Exodus: Why It’s Grand Up North

Hey there #Storetroopers. Welcome back to our weekly property roundup! Today, we’re having a candid chat about the current landscape of the UK property market, tailored for you, the experienced investors. You’ve been around the block a few times, so let's skip the basics and dive straight into the nitty-gritty of why a move up North could be “Bob on.”


Alright, let's set the scene. We're all aware that the property market has been like a game of Monopoly on steroids lately. I’m not going to regurgitate the usual Brexit and pandemic dross – it's been a whirlwind - we know. Prices in some areas have shot up faster than a rocket, while others have been more of a slow burn. It's been a mixed bag, but hey, that's what makes this game exciting, right?

The Big Trends: What's Hot, What's Not

Urban Exodus

This trend is gaining momentum and has turned into more than just a fleeting shift. It's a profound change in lifestyle preferences that's here to stay. We've all noticed many city dwellers moving to the suburbs or countryside for more space and greenery. But here's the question – is there still time to rethink city investments? And what does this mean for us seasoned property investors?


Major cities, especially London, have always been our safe bets. But now, it's time to question the status quo. As people move outwards seeking more space and a better quality of life, we should start looking at suburban or even rural properties. As a Northerner it’s a no brainer, the yields in some of these areas are increasingly attractive.


"London, have always been our safe bets. But now, it's time to question the status quo."

The Anonymous Investor.

Eye Spy Opportunity

Rural towns on the outskirts of major cities are becoming hotspots offering the best of both worlds – more space and a sense of community, yet close enough to the city for those necessary commutes. Plus, property prices in these areas often offer better value for money, with a higher potential for growth.


But do you go long? What I mean is long-term rentals over short-term. With this urban exodus people are looking for more secure, long-term rental solutions. This could mean a shift in our rental strategies – moving away from the short-term, high-turnover rentals to longer, more stable tenancies.


Why It’s Grand Up North


Affordability and Growth Potential

When we turn our gaze towards the North of England, we uncover a treasure trove of investment opportunities that are too significant to ignore. Northern towns and cities are increasingly becoming hotbeds for savvy property investors. Let's delve into what makes these Northern gems shine in the property market.



The Initiative

The Northern Powerhouse Initiative, the government-backed push, has been helping boost economic growth in the North of England for several years now, primarily focusing on major cities like Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, and Sheffield. The initiative was not just about enhancing infrastructure but also about nurturing talent, innovation, and business growth, creating fantastic opportunities for job creation and therefore, property demand.


With many of these Northern towns and cities undergoing significant regeneration, old industrial areas have been transformed into vibrant residential and commercial spaces. This has the knock-on effect of boosting local property values too, making them more attractive to businesses and residents alike. These often-overlooked neighbourhoods can transform into trendy, sought-after locations, bringing in great ROI as values rise, driving demand for both residential, and commercial properties.


Smaller Towns, Big Potential

With property prices in many Northern towns and cities considerably lower than in the South, especially London, this affordability makes them ‘hot spots’ of appealing entry points for both newbie and veteran investors looking to maximise their returns.


When we talk about 'hot spots' in property investment, it's all about catching the wave before it peaks. You know the drill – location is everything. Let’s put London to one side for the moment and think about the untapped potential in smaller towns, especially those with big development plans or those located near major transport links such as Prestwich, Altrincham, and Didsbury. Potential goldmines with upcoming development plans.


University Towns - A Consistent Market

Of course, cities like Manchester, Liverpool and Sheffield are buzzing too. They're not just economic powerhouses; they offer cultural and lifestyle appeal too. With significant investment in infrastructure and a growing job market, these cities are attracting a younger demographic looking for rental properties in dynamic and lively areas. This is like music to the ears of any buy-to-let investor.


Northern university towns like the above, with campuses and hospitals, are goldmines due to their consistent demand for rental properties for students and nursing staff. With the growing population and economic activities, rental demand in these areas is strong, investing in HMO’s and other student accommodations can offer a steady rental market, thanks to the perennial influx of students.


Let us not forget the North’s beautiful landscapes, tourist hotspots, like the Lake District, historic York, and Chester. These offer great opportunities for holiday lets and short-term rentals. Making them increasingly attractive to people looking for a better quality of life away from the hustle and bustle of the South.


If Only We Had a Crystal Ball

Okay, I’m no fortune teller, but let’s speculate a little. Interest rates, government policies, and even global events could rock our boat at any time. Preparation is key. Diversification should be the word of the year; it will pay you to think about spreading your investments to mitigate risks. The rental market may be tougher than old boots, but on the flip side, it's crucial to identify the 'not spots', those areas that may be in decline or not showing promising growth. It’s not just about finding the next big thing but also about avoiding potential sinkholes. Three things to remember:


  1. Diversify Your Portfolio: If your investments are predominantly in the South, looking North could provide a good balance, spreading your risk and potential growth opportunities.

  2. Research Local Markets: Each Northern city and town have unique market dynamics. It's crucial to research the local economy, future development plans, and rental demand to ensure healthy growth prospects.

  3. Think Long-Term Potential: Remember, many Northern investments may not yield immediate high returns, but their long-term growth potential, especially in the wake of ongoing investments and developments should be promising.


There you have it. Northern towns and cities in the UK are no longer just the 'alternative' option; they are rapidly emerging as front-runners in the property investment race. With their combination of economic revitalisation, affordability, and cultural appeal, these regions offer a compelling proposition for veteran and newbie property investors alike. In the search for new opportunities and diversification, as I said, it’s grand up North!


Until next time, keep your investment compass steady and your dreams of property prosperity alive!


The Anonymous Investor.

*This blog post is for general information only and is not financial advice. Always speak to a financial advisor for guidance on your specific situation.



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