The northern property market in England has attracted a great deal of attention lately – as well as a significant amount of local and international investment. The interest has helped drive up property prices, rental values and transaction levels across northern regions – especially in Manchester.

Turned off by eye watering London prices, a growing number of buyers – from families to young professionals to investors – are now looking for alternative options in England’s northern regions.

These buyers have discovered something critical: that a compromise on location isn’t a compromise on capital growth, or quality. In fact, while prices in London and the South East are starting to stagnate, northern property is continuing to appreciate.

This is helped in part by the Northern Powerhouse, as well as low mortgage rates, falling unemployment and lower prices. In Manchester, prices increased by 8.8% last year, well ahead of the 3.7% rise in London. The same phenomenon is being seen in Liverpool, where housing affordability is attracting growing numbers of buyers.

What is the Northern Powerhouse?

It’s government initiative to boost economic growth in England’s North, particularly in Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, Sheffield and Newcastle. The initiative aims to shift the country’s economic focus from London and the South East.

The initiative includes transport improvement, investment in innovation, science and arts.

Many have hailed this initiative, saying the north of England is finally coming into its own.

Young professionals are being priced out of London and hence cities like Manchester and Liverpool are looking more appealing. This is mainly due to the affordable homes and desirable job opportunities.

Also, with Manchester and Liverpool topping the charts for year on year house price growth, this has attracted the attention of property investors also.

Manchester

A new Media City (Europe’s largest Media hub), a MetroLink extension, airport expansion and a fashionable new Northern Quarter means the city at the heart of the Northern Powerhouse scheme is really going places.

The average cost of a property for sale in Manchester is currently around £152,000. The more expensive homes are found in the city centre, although Trafford and Stockport are rapidly growing in popularity.

Around 100,000 students live in Manchester, numbers which in turn ensure the city has a constant flow of young professionals. In fact, there are more 20-somethings in Manchester than anywhere else in the UK, a fact that doesn’t escape buy-to-let landlords on the hunt for an excellent investment. At 6.7%, rental returns in Manchester are the highest in the country and show no signs of going down.

Since demand for property in Manchester currently outstrips supply, experts predict city rents will rise further this year, while still leaving property affordable – a positive sign for investors since it indicates room to move.

With all the local investment and infrastructure improvements, it is little wonder that Manchester is considered one of the best places to buy UK investment property at the moment.

Liverpool

Like neighbouring Manchester, Liverpool property has also seen favourable growth recently, with house prices appreciating by 6.8% over the past year. And like Manchester, this is due in part of under supply.

With the average cost of a property standing at £115,000, Liverpool property is significantly below the UK average. However, under supply means prices are moving steadily north, and so far this year the number of transactions and sales enquiries has been strong.

Regeneration is a key strategy to rejuvenate the city’s prosperity. Helped along by Northern Powerhouse investment and infrastructure improvement, which includes a £200m central business district transformation, Liverpool is becoming a vibrant place to live and work – as well as an important northern tourist destination.

Liverpool’s rental returns are also attracting the notice of buy-to-let landlords, with returns of around 5.2%.

“Liverpool Waters will be the largest regeneration project in the city’s history, changing the look of the waterfront and the economic fortunes of the wider area and the city itself. We’re really excited about the opportunities for investors here, and are looking forward to being at the forefront of the action.”

How can we help?

When buying a new property, it is essential you have the right tools and the knowledge to ensure you make a smart investment. At Parker Buchanan, we have over years’ of experience in helping investors and homeowners excel in their property choices and improve their portfolios with great opportunities. We will also guide any new property buyers through every single process, to ensure that everything is done right.

If you’re serious about taking that first step on the UK property ladder, but you’re still unsure and have some questions, get in touch with our expert team, and we will be more glad to help in you in the right direction.