Extensive Regeneration Fuels Manchester’s Rental Growth

Bridge at night
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The English cities that have experienced significant regeneration have seen average annual rent increases of 21% since 2014, in contrast to the national average increase of 16%.

Manchester is fast becoming a property hotspot! The city is seeing the greatest population growth outside London and the Greater Manchester area as a whole is set to increase from 2.68m to 2.95m by 2031.

Research carried out by the letting agent, Bunk, examined rental prices over the past five years in 12 English cities. Manchester came top, followed by Cambridge, Newcastle, Bristol, Portsmouth and Liverpool.

Rental prices in Manchester have increased by 38% in the past five years, during which time the Greater Manchester area, especially Salford Quays, has undergone a substantial amount of regeneration.

The research discovered that regeneration leads to increased property values and rental prices, as well as offering attractive opportunities to investors and landlords.

As Tom Wollard, co-founder of Bunk and author of the research explained, the increase in prices has resulted in the provision of good-quality housing stock, for which there is tremendous demand.

Increased demand, in turn, causes prices to rise and the new generation of housing currently provides a very satisfying return on investment. For new investors, the best advice would be to look for areas that have been earmarked for regeneration but are still affordable. By doing so the investor should still see a handsome return despite recent changes in the sector.

Salford expansion

But why has there been so much regeneration in Manchester? One answer lies in the relocation of many tech and media companies, fuelling growth not just in Salford Quays but in Manchester as a whole.

Both the BBC, which spearheaded the move, and ITV have large regional studios in MediaCity. And TalkTalk announced in 2018 that they would move their headquarters to Salford. Greater Manchester is now, apparently, the UK’s tech capital outside London!

Yet more upgrades to infrastructure and investment are planned, despite the creation of thousands of jobs and homes in Salford. The development of Port Salford, the UK’s first inland waterway port, will connect Greater Manchester with new international trading routes, resulting in further growth.

Manchester – attractive and dynamic

Manchester has been for many years a fashionable and attractive city and very popular because of the high-octane club scene, job prospects and lifestyle. As one of the most dynamic cities in the UK, the increase in population which is forecast to continue for the next 12 years means that demand for housing will remain high.

The city has benefited hugely from the phenomenal amount of regeneration and investment in the city centre as well as the Greater Manchester area. And the city continues to prosper from more housing, especially build-to-rent schemes, new jobs and transport upgrades.

Unprecedented job creation and office take-up are driving the city’s property market, as the economy diversifies and results in new jobs being created in a variety of sectors.

As young professionals beat a path to the city to take advantage of the unrivalled employment opportunities, rents and demand for quality accommodation are predicted to rise. Which means there will be ample choice for buy-to-let investors.

It is inevitable that social housing will be unable to fill the property gap in Manchester, so it will be the private rented sector which meets renters’ needs for years to come. No doubt there will be plenty of room for further growth in the rental market as the population increases steadily from now on.


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