The new decade is getting off to a strong start, as the property market is powering forward following the general election, pulling the UK out of a period of economic uncertainty.
Since the EU referendum, three-and-a-half years ago, the UK economy has been dominated by political unrest, which meant many big business investment decisions were put on hold.
Throughout this period, the UK property market remained relatively buoyant, with prices continuing to rise in many parts of the country but the picture was varied. Now, post-election, we’ve entered a period of stability which has increased confidence and created a level of pent-up demand, resulting in a surge of interest and enquiries.
Looking ahead, we’re expecting a very active spring market and we’ll be keeping a close eye on how the Brexit deal pans out over the coming months to ensure we use our insight to provide great investment opportunities that are safe and secure.
Residential property in the regions
While the residential property market in prime locations in London has stagnated with prices plateauing in the last three years, prices are now on the rise and continue to rise at an impressive rate in many regional towns and cities. Locations such as Birmingham, Liverpool and Bristol alongside many other smaller cities and towns where employment is booming are likely to see house price rises throughout 2020. This makes these regional centres attractive investment opportunities, particularly in ‘up and coming’ areas undergoing a surge in popularity where investors are likely to see a strong return on their initial investment.
The student accommodation market is currently one of the safest places investors could channel their money. Student housing is very resilient to the effects of Brexit or any other political and economic upheaval as there is a large and growing demand for student accommodation in the UK paired with widespread undersupply. Now that UK universities have to function as commercial businesses, most have ambitious plans to increase their student numbers meaning demand for student housing is only going to increase. Some university cities are better supplied than others but there are some key spots such as Lincoln, Bristol and Nottingham where the purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) market offers a sage and very secure investment.
Discerning investors should look carefully for undervalued properties which can be revamped to increase the capital value and sold off or rented at a much higher yield. Such properties are much more likely to be found in less saturated property markets outside London and the South East, in cities where employment and house prices are still rising fast. Look for cities undergoing major urban regeneration projects and the areas around them – i.e the Commonwealth Games 2022 village in Birmingham, ongoing work at Angel Meadow in Manchester and the YTL development at the former Filton Airfield in Bristol. These projects are and will transform whole sections of these cities having far reaching effects for the surrounding property markets.
Buy-to-let is still a good investment
Concerns over likely mortgage rate rises and changes in legislation have concerned some investors and landlords but buy-to-let can still offer a solid and secure investment in the right areas. The demand for rental properties continues to rise as people are forced to delay getting onto the housing ladder until much later in life due to high prices, thus landlords wanting to rent properties for the long term do not need to be so concerned by market tremors. A good buy-to-let investment simply requires some thorough research on the demand and likely returns and ideally buying in areas where the property is likely to gain in value.
So, as you can see, there is still plenty of opportunity for those looking for a fruitful property investment in 2020. Even during any unrest, the market still provides pockets of opportunity for those with the necessary knowledge, experience and acumen. Effective property investment is all about doing your homework and making well informed decisions.