The North / South Divide - a report by Savills . . .
As you know PIP have been advocates of investing in Northern locations for many years; having recognised early on the potential for strong capital growth in a rising market. We are therefore delighted to share with our past and future investors, details from the latest report by Savills . . .
The report on residential property forecasts predicts that the North-South divide will be turned on its head during 2019 to 2023, with the biggest price rises in the North West (21.6 %).
Obviously, this has created a great deal of media noise. Just last Friday the BBC news reported that the North-South divide in house prices will narrow in the next five years, as property values in northern England rise. The Times also published an article entitled ‘North is hot property as London cools down’.
At this point in the property cycle, growth in London typically slows as price rises ripple out to the regions. This time, the divergence appears even more marked. With Brexit uncertainty in the short term, a general election on the horizon and rising interest rates, stretched affordability will limit growth in London and the South. Conversely, they expect growth in the North West and Yorkshire to be over 20% by 2023.
Prices in the UK as a whole are predicted to rise by 14.8%, adding about £32,000 to the average house value and taking it to £248,086. A 4.5% increase in London would take its average price to £489,628.
London workers need an average of 13 times their salary to afford a property compared with 6 times in the North West, according to the Office of National Statistics (ONS).
With house prices in the North only recently returning to pre-credit crunch levels, there is greater capacity for both household finances and mortgage lenders to support more growth over the next five years than in other regions across the UK. The ability to achieve higher income yields in the northern cities is therefore likely to underpin investment demand from both institutional and private investors.
The Government has shown growing support for the institutional build to rent sector (BTR). Purpose-built rental blocks aim to increase the supply of rented properties in areas of high demand. From Q1 2017 to Q2 2018, there were just under 10,000 BTR completions compared to 72,000 buy-to-let landlords. Until the supply of BTR properties increases dramatically, the country will remain reliant on cash investors to bring more stock into the rental market. As a result, we’re likely to see demand grow faster than supply over the next five years, driving rental value growth.
With major improvements to infrastructure taking place all of the North of the country, this has encouraged large businesses and their workforce to relocate. This week Channel 4 announced it will be moving its national headquarters to Leeds. Whereas the likes of HSBC and Deutsche Bank have already successfully relocated to Birmingham. As this momentum continues to strengthen the economy in the north, this migration trend looks set to continue for the foreseeable future.
There really is no better time than now to invest in the North of England.
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