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The Opulent Blog.

The significance of Crossrail on property prices

Crossrail is Europe’s largest railway infrastructure project, and it is having a transformative impact on London. Once fully open, it will serve 41 stations across the Capital, cut journey times into Central London by up to 40 minutes, increase rail capacity by 10% and add an estimated £42bn to the UK’s economy. It has also had a significant two-part impact on the Greater London property market. The first effect is the initial bounce in prices which followed the announcement and raised house prices along the Crossrail line. Research from CBRE shows that a 10% reduction in commuting time can increase house prices by as much as 6%. The same report shows that the impact of Crossrail appears to have been even greater than this. Since its announcement in 2008, an average 31% increase in property prices has been observed on top of existing gains in the wider market. Some reports from agents go even further and identify Crossrail areas where house prices have doubled since the plans for the new line were made public. What does this mean from an investment point of view? The reality is that you will be paying a higher entry price when investing in Crossrail destinations than you would have a decade ago. While unfortunate, this is the price of successful infrastructure investment in the local area. However, on the other hand, it speaks to the positive impact of Crossrail, and it does not necessarily mean that you are investing too late – quite the opposite, in fact. While some of the benefits of Crossrail have already been seen in relation to house prices, the second major impact of the new line on property prices is the ongoing aspect that will extend far into the future. The line is scheduled to be complete and fully operational by June 2022, and its impact on house prices will continue from there as demand for properties along the route continues to grow. Returning to the CBRE report, the agency expects average additional house price growth of 3.3% annually along the Crossrail route in addition to the normal market growth. This is a simple consequence of supply and demand. Improved connectivity and reduced commute times to Central London and other destinations such as Heathrow Airport will naturally make properties within a five- or 10-minute walk of the new Crossrail line more attractive. However, the impact of Crossrail on house prices is not uniform across all the stations, with some areas benefitting more than others. For example, Hayes, a town in West London, has proven to be a big winner from this new infrastructure in recent years. House prices in the town have already risen in line with this new transport infrastructure development, in the manner described above. The latest figures from Rightmove show that house prices in Hayes are 11% above their pre-pandemic peak, compared to prices in the wider local borough of Hillingdon which are just 6% above the pre-pandemic peak on average. This clearly demonstrates the benefit Crossrail has brought to the housing market in Hayes. Indeed, Hayes has been cited by JLL as one of the major beneficiaries of the new rail line, and noted that it is now, “host to the most extensive planning pipeline in West London.” Whereas this means that prices in the town are higher now than they would have been even five years ago, that downside is superseded by what this means for the future. Increased property prices are a consequence of the increased demand that we are seeing in Hayes for high quality rented accommodation close to Crossrail. This increased popularity makes it likely that both rents and property prices in Hayes will continue rising in the future as Crossrail becomes fully operational. Combine that with other benefits of life in Hayes such as its tranquil suburban atmosphere, first-class employment opportunities, bustling cultural scene and its outstanding education options – among many other positives – and you have all the ingredients needed for a growing property hotspot. The impact of Crossrail on property prices is already apparent, and the future growth potential in hubs along the route such as Hayes make this a prime investment opportunity. However, with Crossrail opening fully in June 2022, and some price rises already locked in, time is of the essence to invest, get the best possible price and make the most of the projected gains which could be coming down the track. To find out more about investment projects in Hayes, and to learn more about the benefits on offer for investors, get in touch with our team today by clicking here.
Sanjit Dhanjal
25th February 2022

Property is still a good option despite rising inflation

Rising inflation has been one of the major economic trends so far in 2022, dominating the news cycle and leading many to question whether they should keep investing or exercise a greater degree of caution. While the government had initially set the Bank of England (BoE) a target to keep inflation below 2% over this year, the Bank currently expects it to reach 7% over the course of Spring 2022. The Bank has responded to this by raising the base rate of interest from 0.25% to 0.50% this month in an attempt to reign in and control that inflation. While this may seem alarming to some, in reality, it is a positive move that is designed to have beneficial medium- and long-term effects. The headline 7% inflation figure is attention-grabbing, but the BoE believes its actions will help to bring inflation back down again from Q3 onwards. Additionally, the Bank believes that some of the underlying causes of the Spring inflation will only be in effect for the short term, stating: “Most of the causes of the current high rate of inflation won’t last. It’s unlikely that the prices of energy and imported goods will continue to rise as rapidly as they have done recently.” What does this mean for property investors? The first obvious area that inflation will affect is the mortgage market. A rising base rate has caused a reaction from lenders who are increasing their mortgage interest rates. While it is true that not all products are becoming pricier, borrowers should be aware that the majority of mortgages will now be more expensive and take that into consideration when investing. However, the increased cost of borrowing does not exist in a vacuum. It is also true that rents and house prices in the best markets like Manchester and the London Commuter Belt are rising at rates which are notably above the added mortgage costs. This means that while investors should be aware of the impact inflation is having on the base rate of interest, it should not be something which puts you off on its own. The upsides of property investment are far ahead of the downsides of mortgage costs that are rising slightly, but are still at historic low levels. It is also worth bearing in mind that more expensive mortgage products offer a natural advantage to cash buyers as your relative spending power compared to borrowers will be magnified. If you are in a position to invest with cash, this is an ideal time to do so. The second major effect of inflation that concerns investors is on the tenant side of the equation. As inflation rises, it raises the cost of living for tenants and reduces the amount of disposable income for many. This raises questions about how rents will be impacted. While there will certainly be a minority of people who choose not to move home due to the rising cost of living, that does not reflect the majority. The ongoing imbalance between supply and demand has pushed competition for apartments to new highs. Rightmove’s latest Rental Tracker notes that competition between tenants has increased by 94% in a year, and tenant demand as a whole has grown by 32% over the same time frame. This reality means that rents are not only primed to remain strong for the foreseeable future, but most reliable sources also believe that they will continue growing rapidly. The same Rightmove Tracker estimates average rental growth of 5% across the country over the course of UK in spite of the impact of inflation on the cost of living. Finally, as mentioned previously, the Bank of England believes that the rate of inflation will peak in the Spring and begin to fall towards more manageable levels over the course of 2022. With that in mind, we can have some confidence that the cost of living crisis will be temporary, and any effect it has on renters will also pass in short order. Overall, worry over rising inflation is understandable, but the reality is that UK property has proven itself to be one of the most resilient and reliable assets on the market time and time again. Property prices and rents remain on an upward trajectory, and the underlying situation regarding a lack of new supply is no closer to being solved. The market is buoyant, and the potential positives on offer when investing in UK property outweigh the negatives and concern caused by inflation – making this a good time to invest. Want to learn more about how UK property could be your best investment in 2022? Get in touch with our team today by clicking here.
Sanjit Dhanjal
25th February 2022

Top 5 reasons to invest in Hayes

Hayes in West London has continued to rise in notoriety over the past few years. Whilst the people of Hayes would be the first to say that Hayes is not the most glamorous area, in terms of value for money and investment potential, there are few places that can rival it. We have put together the Opulent top 5 reasons to invest in Hayes and look to explain why property prices in Hayes have a bright future: 1) Existing Transport Links Hayes has always had great transport links both into London and outside of London to Reading and the home counties. Hayes and Harlington station has recently been refurbished ahead of the grand opening of the Crossrail in June 2022. Travel times as they stand today without Crossrail are already very efficient: Heathrow Airport - 12 mins via Heathrow Connect Train Paddington Station - 20 mins via First Great Western Reading - 40 mins via First Great Western As a result of the short commute times, more and more people have opted to live in Hayes, which has had a positive effect on house prices in the area. 2) Crossrail From June 2022 the Crossrail, Europe’s largest infrastructure project is expected to go live from Hayes and Harlington Station. Crossrail is the largest infrastructure project in Europe and is set to overhaul the already short travel times to other parts of London, in some cases by up to 40 minutes. The new service will see up to 10 trains an hour from Hayes and Harlington station with direct access to several of London’s key employment hubs. Typical journey times from Hayes once the service goes live will be as follows: Heathrow Terminals 1,2,3 and 5 - 5 Mins Paddington - 16 mins Bond Street - 20 mins Liverpool Street - 27 mins Canary Wharf - 34 mins 3) Regeneration Since the arrival of Crossrail property prices in the vicinity of Hayes have increased 50% over the last 5 years (Hillingdon Council). Much of this has been attributable to regeneration and the amount of inward investment into Hayes to transform it into a thriving commuter belt town. Through an ongoing plan, the council aim to overhaul the entire Hayes Town Centre, a project that has just gone out to tender and is expected to be in the region of £200m. In addition to this, the very site our Barnett Apartments sits on is part of a wider regeneration project that will see the creation of over 1500 new homes and lots of commercial area for businesses. This scheme itself is worth over £200m. Another significant regeneration project in Hayes has been the Old Vinyl Factory redevelopment, the former home of EMI records. This £250m project is ongoing and will see the creation of 600 plus homes, 550,000 sq. ft. of office space and 70,000 sq. ft. of retail and leisure space including a 3 screened cinema, landscaped streets and cafés and restaurants. All this regeneration has helped transform Hayes into a thriving community where we are seeing a huge upturn in the demand for property which in turn has meant prices in the area have risen considerably and are expected to continue to rise. 4) Heathrow Airport Heathrow Airport is the world’s busiest international passenger airport and employs over 70,000 employees. There aren't many towns that can boast having an international airport just 5 minutes away. Many of the airport workers reside in Hayes due to the short travel times to and from the airport. As the airport continues to expand with a proposed new runway and 6th terminal, demand for property both to live and to buy in Hayes, is only scheduled to increase and Heathrow is destined to plough even more money into the local Hayes economy. 5) Buoyant Local Economy Due to the location of Hayes being conveniently located on the cusp of four major motorways and its excellent transport links, it has always attracted businesses to set up in the area. Some of the largest companies in the world are already based in Hayes, and with the arrival of Crossrail demand for office space in Hayes is set to increase even further. All these companies bring staff to the area, all of whom require property to live in hence increasing the potential target audience size of prospective tenants and driving property prices upwards. Hayes is also very close to a large business park called Stockley Park that is home to companies such as Canon, Apple, Hasbro and Marks and Spencer to name but a few. All of this has helped transform the local economy in Hayes. To learn more about Hayes and investing in the London Commuter Belt, please get in touch with our team today by clicking here.
Sanjit Dhanjal
25th February 2022

Our top tips on where to invest in 2022

For both first-time investors and experienced landlords with an extensive portfolio, the UK property market offers real opportunity in 2022. The national economy is recovering strongly following the Covid-19 pandemic, and the housing market continues to perform well. The gap between supply and demand in the UK continues to widen. Figures from the National Housing Federation show that there is an annual shortfall of almost 100,000 new homes at the moment, and the number of new starts fell even further during Covid. This backlog will have a beneficial effect for investors in the coming years, meaning that we may be at the start of an unusually strong five-year period for UK property. The Purpose-Built Student Accommodation market is also performing strongly and could be of interest for investors looking at an asset outside of the usual residential property market. We’ve previously looked at how to decide where the best places are to invest, and here we have picked out some of our favourites which are particularly attractive for investors in 2022. Manchester, residential property Manchester has long been known as one of the UK’s top property investment hotspots, and its performance during Covid has only improved. Rental demand has reached unprecedented new heights in Manchester’s most desirable city centre markets in the last 12 months. Rightmove recorded a 36% annual increase in demand in a year, and new research from urbanbubble shows that there were only 525 vacant residential properties in the whole city at the end of 2021 – this is compared to more than 2,000 at the end of 2020, and is in spite of just under 6,000 new apartments being completed in Manchester during 2021. What’s more, the latest UK Residential Forecast report from JLL shows that rents in Manchester are set to increase by more than 15% in the next five years. This is far above the national average and a good sign for investors. House prices are rising too, with Zoopla recording house price growth of 8.5% in Manchester over the course of 2021, and Savills predicting a further 25.8% of growth in the next five years. This is based on predictions of a large population increase of at least 70,000 people in the next decade according to Manchester City Council figures. All of the above means that investors should strongly consider investing in Manchester property in 2022 thanks to this growth potential. To learn more about why Manchester is so popular with investors right now, click here. London Commuter Belt, residential property The London Commuter Belt is one of the UK’s most popular property investment markets. Its population is growing thanks to the number of people leaving Central London, and waves of regeneration are transforming Commuter Belt towns, creating desirable neighbourhoods which offer high quality job opportunities and an enviable lifestyle. Jessica Tomlinson, Research Analyst at Savills, said: “Across the commuter belt, we’ve also begun to see a change in priorities with people seeking to be closer to transport links and lifestyle amenities in town and city centres, in contrast to the flight to country properties in village and rural locations seen throughout last year.” Despite property prices growth of 10.4% over 2021, entry prices remain affordable and offer many of the benefits of buying in Central London without the cost. Furthermore, the latest residential forecast from Savills projects further house price growth (up to 17.1%) for the Commuter Belt in the next five years. Rents in the Commuter Belt are also performing strongly, and in 2021 they hit their highest levels since 2007. Savills recorded an average rental increase of 7.3% last year, and has predicted further rental inflation of up to 13% for the Commuter Belt as a whole in the next five years in its most recent residential forecasts. The London Commuter Belt has such a wide variety of properties and locations that there is something for everyone. More renters than ever before are realising this and are leaving London in response. This is a key trend of 2022 and makes the Commuter Belt a property investment area of interest. You can learn more about why the London Commuter Belt is one of the UK’s most attractive property investment markets, including which towns within the Belt you should be targeting, in 2022 by clicking here. Stoke-on-Trent, Purpose-Built Student Accommodation (PBSA) What if you’re looking to invest in Purpose-Built Student Accommodation (PBSA) rather than residential property? That requires a slightly different market, and there are not many better options than Stoke-on-Trent. Stoke enjoys a prime position 1 hour 15 minutes from London, 30 minutes from Birmingham and 40 minutes from Manchester – making it extremely attractive to businesses and, consequently, students and young graduates looking to build their careers. This is one of the UK’s most important university regions and is home to two of the country’s more impressive institutions - the University of Staffordshire (approx. 13,000 students) and Keele University (approx. 10,000 students). Crucially, these two universities have strong links to business, and are a major factor in the area being one of the UK’s strongest areas for job growth according to the UK Powerhouse Report. The arrival of the HS2 high speed rail line will only help to create more jobs and boost the local economy (already worth £23bn) even further – making the area even more attractive to students. The area also has a real shortage of high quality student accommodation at a time when student numbers are increasing, and the government is targeting an additional 200,000 international students annually by 2030. It is for reasons like the above that, in the words of Merelina Sykes, Joint Head of Student Property at Knight Frank: “Global investors continue to acquire PBSA assets in the UK, fundamentally underpinned by the UK’s world renowned higher education system. The asset class offers a stable income stream, with strong year-on-year rental growth prospects. When compared to more mature, traditional asset classes, PBSA continues to stand out.” To learn more about the PBSA investment market in the UK, and why it is such an attractive asset class, please click here. 2022 has the potential to be a good year for property investors, especially those investing in areas like the ones targeted above. Get in touch with our team today to learn more and get started with your next investment by clicking here.
Sanjit Dhanjal
27th January 2022

There has never been a better time to invest in the London Commuter Belt – here’s why

The London Commuter Belt is one of the UK’s most popular property investment markets. Its population is growing thanks to the number of people leaving Central London, and waves of regeneration are transforming Commuter Belt towns, creating desirable neighbourhoods which offer high quality job opportunities and an enviable lifestyle. Entry prices remain affordable for investors despite growth of 10.4% over 2021 – and, even better, Savills projects further house price growth (up to 17.1%) and rental growth (up to 13%) for the Commuter Belt as a whole in the next five years. “Buyer commitment to moving remains strong and longer-term adaptations to home working will benefit London’s wider commuter zone,” said Frances Clacy, Associate Director at Savills. This makes it a good time to invest in the Commuter Belt – but where specifically should you consider for your next purchase? We have gathered a range of options which offer strong potential growth in the future. Chatham, Kent Chatham is a convenient 45-minute train journey outside London on the coast. From its past as a national centre of shipbuilding, today it has a population of almost 300,000 and is home to 12,000 students at the universities of Kent and Greenwich, both of which have campuses in the town. This prime location by the sea is extremely attractive to businesses of all kinds, and more than £1bn of public and private investment is pouring into Chatham. Known as the Medway 2025 plan, this money is transforming the town and turning it into a place which can offer both high quality jobs and a quiet lifestyle, all just a short journey from Central London. Notable investments include an £86m further education campus, £37m of railway improvements, and seven miles of waterfront renewal among other impressive projects. Chatham already benefits from economic growth above the national average, and it is estimated that the Medway 2035 plan will create a further 17,000 jobs in the area. Matthew Norwell, Chief Executive of the Thames Gateway Kent Partnership, said: “Chatham Waterfront is a real beacon of regeneration success. The mixed-use development – featuring hugely popular homes, leisure, retail and entertainment venues, and the outstanding Universities at Medway complex – is an excellent case study of how to create sustainable, vibrant communities. Chatham Maritime both respects the past and embraces the future”. More, better jobs means more people moving to the area, and all of them will need housing. Luxury apartments with views over the stunning Chatham waterfront are likely to be in extremely high demand in the coming years – making them an intriguing investment option. Want to learn more about investing in Chatham? Get in touch with our team today by clicking here. Uxbridge When it comes to investing in the London Commuter Belt, there are not many more attractive places for buy to let investors than Uxbridge. Located a short journey from Heathrow Airport and within an easy journey of London via road or public transport, Uxbridge is an ideal place for businesses and commuters. Heathrow Airport itself is the UK’s largest and one of the busiest in the world. Additionally, it is one of the UK’s most significant economic powerhouses, contributing £188bn to the UK’s economy every year according to the Centre for Economics and Business Research. It is projected that will grow to £204bn by 2025, and even further when the airport expansion is complete. This expansion is estimated to be worth £61bn to the country over 60 years, as well as providing 77,000 new jobs and 5,000 apprenticeships by 2030 – the vast majority of which will be located minutes from Uxbridge in addition to the hundreds of thousands of jobs in the area which Heathrow already supports. Because of this, there are nowhere near enough homes in Uxbridge for everyone who wants them, and that steady supply of residents combined with a shortage of properties is a recipe for a successful buy to let investment location. Furthermore, proximity to the airport also makes it a place with potential for successful short term lets if that is your preferred investment strategy. Want to learn more about Uxbridge? Get in touch with our team today by clicking here. Hayes Our final London Commuter Belt investment area to recommend is Hayes in West London. This town is centred on a beautiful canal and features a range of green space which makes it one of the most tranquil areas in London. It has been described by the London Evening Standard as offering “fantastic value, future potential, a swift commute and a property market that has remained on the up despite the slowdown across most of the rest of the capital.” It is that optimism and sense of opportunity that defines Hayes. A £230m masterplan to remodel the town centre entirely is underway and will span the next 15 years. It will deliver new housing, infrastructure, community areas and more which will give the town a new face and deliver economic prosperity for its residents for years to come. This internal investment will combine with perhaps the single most significant factor in Hayes’ growth – the new Crossrail line. The brand new Hayes & Harlington Crossrail station gives direct and fast rail access to both Central London and Heathrow Airport, with trains every five minutes at peak times – making Hayes a perfect for businesses looking for an ideal location between London and the rest of the world. Unsurprisingly, house prices are already rising thanks to Crossrail, and there is potential for even more significant gains in the future as companies with major bases in Hayes – such as Amazon, British Airways, Samsung and others – are joined by new arrivals looking to make the most of the outstanding location. Want to learn more about investing in Hayes? Get in touch with our team today by clicking here. The London Commuter Belt has a wealth of opportunities for investors. Towns like those described above have growing populations, substantial investment and a bright future ahead of them. Investors looking for their next property should be looking at the London Commuter Belt. Get in touch with our team today for more information.
Sanjit Dhanjal
27th January 2022

Student accommodation prices remain resilient

As we enter 2022, many investors are considering where to put their money to give themselves the best chance of earning reliable income. The property market has proven itself over many years to be a better option than either stocks and shares or saving with a bank, but what type of property should you buy? Residential property investment is the most popular property asset class, but the Purpose-Built Student Accommodation (PBSA) market is an alternative that should be of interest to any investor in 2022. While PBSA has many attractive features, perhaps the most important for investors is its history of resilience. It was one of the few asset classes to weather the 2008 financial crisis with minimal ill effects, and all indications are that it has repeated the trick during the pandemic. Indeed, 2008 showed us that during downturns, student numbers often increase as many who would otherwise have not gone to university choose to go and develop their skills further. The Covid-19 pandemic saw a temporary shift to online learning for many students, but they are now returning to classrooms as the standard of education received in person cannot be replicated remotely. Due to this, occupancy rates bounced back strongly in 2021, and the average sector-wide average now stands at more than 95% according to the latest Student Accommodation Survey from Knight Frank and UCAS. This has been driven by greater demand from both UK-based students and overseas students, another key factor in the resilience of the sector. In the case of international students, there was some speculation that the number in the UK may fall – something of concern for investors as overseas students are generally more inclined to pay higher rents for the best PBSA close to universities and city centres. However, the reality is that interest from overseas students remains strong and is in fact higher than pre-Covid levels. Furthermore, Times Higher Education reports that the government has stated a goal of attracting 600,000 international students to the UK every year by 2030. This is approximately 200,000 more annually than we currently see, and will see competition for PBSA reach new highs as only two of the UK’s top university towns have enough accommodation for the expected number of students according to EG. Another factor in the growing competition for PBSA is the simple fact that unites both UK-based and international students in the Knight Frank/UCAS Survey of 70,000 students: the most important factor is value for money. This means that traditional university-owned halls of residence with no amenities, sub-standard maintenance and outdated facilities are simply not as desirable compared to PBSA buildings which offer a substantially better quality of life. It is solid fundamentals like this which explain the ongoing resilience of the PBSA sector, and underline why it is such an attractive prospect for investors. The increasing popularity of PBSA, and the lack of supply against the growing demand, has led to estimates that the sector will be worth as much as £72bn by the end of 2022. This was driven by more than £3bn of transactions in 2021 as recorded by Savills, a total that is likely to be significantly outstripped in 2022. Merelina Sykes, Joint Head of Student Property at Knight Frank, commented: “A pick-up in deal volumes is a positive sign for the market, suggesting investors […] have confidence in the sector’s ability to deliver long-term, stable income streams. “Throughout the pandemic, yields have remained stable, due in part to rental guarantees but also ongoing confidence and the view that pandemic disruption is short-term. The weight of capital now targeting PBSA has increased and it is our expectation that student property will remain a key target for both institutional and private equity in 2022 and beyond.” Sykes added: “Global investors continue to acquire PBSA assets in the UK, fundamentally underpinned by the UK’s world renowned higher education system. The asset class offers a stable income stream, with strong year-on-year rental growth prospects. When compared to more mature, traditional asset classes, PBSA continues to stand out.” Richard Valentine-Selsey of Savills agrees, stating: “In contrast to many other real estate sectors, 2021 [saw] significant confidence return to the UK’s PBSA sector.” This is an ideal time to consider a PBSA investment that offers everything students want in a strong university area. For example, Poulsen House, which lies a nine-minute walk from the University of Staffordshire (approx.. 13,000 students) and a short drive from Keele University (approx.. 10,000 students). This is a fully-operational student accommodation development with a strong track record of student satisfaction and a 100% occupancy rate. A two-year rental assurance provided for the first 40 investors represents an attractive and immediate income stream for investors. Additionally, it is fully hands-off and managed by Greenpad, the university’s own management company, and it is their sole management property – guaranteeing a high level of focus and maximum occupancy each year. With properties available from just £62,950 per unit, this is an opportunity not to be missed. For more information about the UK PBSA market and investing in Poulsen House, please get in touch with our team today by clicking here.
Sanjit Dhanjal
27th January 2022

Why is Hayes, West London attracting so much investment?

The London Commuter Belt is one of the UK’s most interesting property investment markets. As we enter 2022, investors are looking for the best property hotspots for the new year, and the London Commuter Belt is a leading contender. According to reports, the sharp rise in home working caused by the Covid-19 pandemic led more people than ever before to abandon Central London and look for property elsewhere. The Commuter Belt was the most popular destination, and a record £54.9bn was spent on housing here over 2021 as per data from HM Revenue and Customs. Reports from local agents in London show that the vast majority of people leaving the Capital (92%) ended up in London Commuter Belt towns. This population growth has put serious pressure on housing markets across the Commuter Belt as there are simply not enough homes to go around. Almost all Commuter Belt agents surveyed by Savills towards the end of 2021 reported that their available stock had dropped to unprecedented levels. Consequently, Savills has predicted strong house price growth (up to 17.1%) and rental growth (up to 13%) for the Commuter Belt as a whole in the next five years. However, not all areas of the Commuter Belt are made equal, with some areas proving especially dynamic and popular with new arrivals. One such area is Hayes in West London. Hayes was once famous for being a major industrial area, but in the 21st century it is busy transforming itself into the picture of a modern neighbourhood which offers all the benefits of suburban life with convenient access to the West End and Central London. Plenty of green space and the Grand Union Canal create an atmosphere of relaxation in a picturesque setting. The progress made in Hayes has been so impressive that the London Evening Standard has named it one of the top seven key regeneration areas that buyers should watch out for, and described the area in glowing terms as, “fantastic value, future potential, a swift commute and a property market that has remained on the up despite the slowdown across most of the rest of the capital.” The number one factor which has gone the furthest in turning Hayes into such a successful and popular area is the arrival of Crossrail. While the area already close proximity to the M25 and M4 motorways, the brand new Hayes & Harlington Crossrail station gives direct and fast rail access to both Central London and Heathrow Airport, with trains every five minutes at peak times – making Hayes a perfect spot for young professionals looking to live outside the city. House prices are already rising in line with this new transport infrastructure development, and there is a lot of headroom for more gains in the future. The effect Crossrail has had on Hayes cannot be underestimated. JLL has cited the area as one of the major beneficiaries of the new rail line, and noted that it is now, “host to the most extensive planning pipeline in West London.” This pipeline includes a £230m masterplan to remodel the town centre entirely over the next 15 years, providing new housing, infrastructure, community areas and other facilities which will make Hayes one of the most desirable areas to live in West London. This regeneration is smartening up the town centre and promises to deliver economic growth, new jobs and a vibrant economy for Hayes. And this is on top of the outstanding employment opportunities which already exist in Hayes. Blue chip companies including Amazon, SAP, British Airways, Hewlett Packard, Samsung and more have a significant presence in the town – providing the sort of high quality, professional employment that a successful town is built on. Hayes is a place that property investors should consider when looking to expand their portfolios. Its position between Heathrow and Central London makes it a natural home for business, and this is even more the case with the new Crossrail line. Prices are below the London Commuter Belt averages and, consequently, potential yields are higher. Its attractiveness to renters is clear, and it should continue to grow in future thanks to a programme of investment in the town centre. To learn more about Hayes and investing in the London Commuter Belt, please get in touch with our team today by clicking here.
Sanjit Dhanjal
27th January 2022

How to decide the best area to invest in property in the UK

No matter whether you are a first-time investor or a seasoned professional, the same fundamentals apply when you are looking for your next investment. Arguably the most important consideration of all is where to invest. Finding the right location can be the difference that makes your investment a success and ensures long-term profit for many years to come. In this article, we have gathered some essential tips to help you look for the right things and find the best investment markets in the UK. Population growth The first thing to look for is a rapidly growing population – if you can find out where people are going rather than where they are now, you can buy in a growing market and make the most of the demand that will increase year on year. This is particularly the case in city centre markets where housing is already at a premium and a large number of young professionals are attracted to the area for work and the lifestyle on offer. Manchester is the perfect example of this principle in action. The latest figures from the City Council and the Greater Manchester Forecasting Model show that the population of Manchester is expected to grow by at least 70,000 people in the next five years, to a total of more than 625,000. Data from the Office for National Statistics shows that this population growth is approximately double the national average. All of these people will need homes, and it is anticipated that this will put significant pressure on the luxury residential market focussed on the city centre and other Manchester investment hotspots like MediaCityUK. A high level of population growth is fantastic news for investors and should be one of the first things you look for when considering where to invest. High demand for homes is a priority for any successful investment strategy. Undersupply of homes The other side of that equation is a low supply of new homes being built in the city. If the number of new properties completing and coming to market is insufficient, demand will continue growing and lead to high house prices and rental growth. The UK market has one of the largest gaps between supply and demand that you will find, making it an ideal place to invest. It is estimated by the National Housing Federation that at least 340,000 new homes are needed each year to keep up with national population growth. In reality, fewer than 300,000 are being built every year – and this undersupply is what leads to the high demand investors should look for. To return to the example of Manchester, despite the aforementioned 70,000 extra people expected to move to the city in the near future, the number of new homes coming to the market is nowhere near enough – only another 12,000 are set to be completed by the end of 2025, according to the Deloitte Manchester Crane Survey 2021. Another city with a significant undersupply of homes is Birmingham, which Deloitte shows completed just over 2,000 new homes in 2020. A study from JLL shows that the city needs more than 4,000 new homes a year to meet demand, and this has led the company to predict that Birmingham will see the strongest house price growth of any city in the next five years – a total of 27% by 2026. Over the same period, JLL predicts that rents will go up in Birmingham by 15%, also reflecting the undersupply of homes. If you are looking for investment property in Birmingham, this is the ideal time to buy and secure an impressive income in the years ahead. As an investor, if you can find a place where an undersupply of homes combines with a growing population, it is worth your attention and further research. Infrastructure and regeneration This leads to the obvious question – why is it that some places attract such a large number of people? The answer lies in a mix of factors that are centred around regeneration, infrastructure investment and the positive gains they bring through high-quality employment opportunities and an enhanced lifestyle offering. In Manchester alone we can see ID Manchester, the Mayfield regeneration, the expansion of MediaCityUK, the creation of a new 23,500 seat arena, the enormous Northern Gateway project and much more. Together, these projects represent billions of pounds of investment, millions of square feet of new office space, thousands of homes, new public parks and piazzas, and a vibrant future for the city. Manchester also has a long history of investing in its transport infrastructure and has become one of the world’s best-connected cities. The Metrolink tram system now stretches across the region, providing convenient and easy transport. More expansion is coming in the future with additional lines to nearby economic centres such as Stockport having been proposed. Likewise, Manchester’s national rail links are being upgraded by the HS2 high-speed rail line which will cut journey times to London and Birmingham substantially: Birmingham Interchange, HS2 time 37 minutes (current time 1 hour 46 minutes) Birmingham, HS2 time 40 minutes (current time 1 hour 28 minutes) London, HS2 time 1 hour 7 minutes (current time 2 hours 7 minutes) Additionally, a £1bn investment into Manchester Airport is ongoing which will expand it even further and ensure Manchester remains an accessible international hub in the long term. This connectivity is second only to London in the UK and has drawn international giants such as Amazon, Microsoft, the BBC and many more to Manchester. In turn, this has made the city more attractive to young professionals and graduates, who are in turn pushing up house prices and rents by increasing demand for the best quality housing in the most desirable areas. In this way, finding a location that can add infrastructure investment and regeneration to the aforementioned population growth and undersupply of homes is the ideal scenario for any investor. In truth, all three factors discussed in this article tend to fuel each other as cities like Manchester and Birmingham can attest to. Whether you are an overseas investor, are looking to secure your children’s future, wish to generate a reliable income stream, or are investing for any other reason – investing in UK property is a good choice. By following the recommendations in this article, you are sure to find your perfect investment location and start earning income. For more information about the UK’s best investment areas, get in touch with our team today by clicking here.  
Sanjit Dhanjal
23rd November 2021

Just why is Manchester so popular for property investment right now?

Manchester has been the UK’s number one property hotspot for many years, but its popularity among property investors has gone through the roof over the last 12 months in particular. The Covid-19 pandemic threatened to slow down the UK investment market, but Manchester led the way and went from strength to strength instead, defying expectations. Here’s why you should be looking to buy property in Manchester… Unprecedented rental demand Manchester city centre is seeing higher rental demand than ever before. Passive rental income is the basis of any property portfolio, and investors should look no further than investment property in Manchester to find fast-growing and reliable rents. Reports from Zoopla in November 2021 show that rents across the country are rising at their fastest rate in 13 years – and nowhere is that truer than in Manchester. Tenant demand in the city is growing at unprecedented levels, with Rightmove recording a 36% increase year-on-year to September 2021 in its latest Rental Tracker. This incredible growth is reflected in stock levels across the city. Research from urbanbubble in Q3 2021 shows that fewer than 500 rental homes were available across Manchester, despite 9,200 new homes being completed since the beginning of 2020. This is the lowest number on record and reflects the demand that Manchester is seeing. Not even the pre-pandemic market – when it was widely agreed that Manchester was reaching a new peak – could compete with the current situation. The research from urbanbubble goes on to confirm that rents for studios, two- and three-bedroom apartments are at record highs, and average rents for one-bedroom apartments are following close behind. In contrast to last summer when tenants were spoilt for choice, this is a landlord-friendly market where rents across certain types of apartments have increased by 6% in the last quarter alone due to the overwhelming tenant demand and low competition rates for new homes. What’s more, the latest UK Residential Forecast report from JLL shows that rents in Manchester are set to increase by more than 15% in the five years to 2026. This is significantly more than the national average, and it would be no surprise to see that turn out to be a conservative estimate if the market continues its trend of outperforming expectations in the years to come. Strong house price growth The same JLL report also showcases the strength of house price growth in Manchester. Whereas the national average house price is predicted to increase by 21.6% over the next five years, those in Manchester are anticipated to go up by 25.8% over the same period. This is on top of the 8.7% increase in house prices that Manchester has seen in the last 12 months, as per figures in the most recent Hometrack UK Cities Index. This compares favourably to the UK average growth of 6.1% over the same period, and the Index states that “demand looks set to end the year more strongly than last year and we expect this to carry into 2022.” JLL cites the lack of available homes in Manchester as the main factor in this strong growth – and that is something which is unlikely to change in the near future. Whereas Manchester’s population is expected to grow by 70,000 over the next five years, nowhere near that many homes are being completed. The Deloitte Manchester Crane Survey 2021 estimates that only 12,000 homes are scheduled to be completed in the city by 2025. Even with additional planning permissions being granted in the future, this leaves a shortfall of tens of thousands of properties – reinforcing the demand and competition that has will lead to substantial growth in the coming years. A booming economy and office sector Manchester’s story in recent years has been one of incredible economic success which has put it second only to London in the UK. The city centre economy alone is forecast to be worth more than £6bn annually by 2025, and overall the city is growing significantly faster than the UK average. Oxford Economics predicts economic growth of 16.4% by the middle of the decade. This is being driven by a huge drive to create world-class office space in the city. The aforementioned urbanbubble quarterly report shows that almost 3 million sqft of new office space has been submitted for planning permission since the beginning of 2020, which is a record high. Take-up of office space has been equally strong so far over 2021. The latest reports from the Manchester Office Agents Forum show that total take-up by the end of the year is likely to exceed 1 million sqft in the city and that take-up over the last quarter has increased by as much as 17%. “An almost 17% rise in just one quarter highlights the fact that the Manchester office market is back with a vengeance”, said Steve Brittle, partner at Matthews & Goodman. “Manchester is one of the most active commercial centres in the country, we think this trend will continue.” Major transactions of note during Q3 2021 include: Cloud Imperium Games taking 87,130 sq ft at Allied London’s Manchester Goods Yard Deliveroo committing to 10,002 sq ft at 5 New York Street Accenture taking 25,000 sq ft at Bruntwood’s Sci Tech’s Circle Square scheme on Oxford Road This level of economic activity is important for Manchester and helps to explain why so many people are moving to the city. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, Manchester managed to attract some of the world’s leading technology and communication companies including Amazon, Google, Microsoft and the BBC. Now, it is clear that wasn’t a one-off, and the city is attracting the next wave of emerging giants, as well as developing its capacity to produce more homegrown “unicorns” like The Hut Group. This means that Manchester can offer top tier employment prospects to the most promising young professionals and graduates – drawing people to the city from across the UK and the world, continuing the cycle that creates demand and competition in the housing market. This is an excellent time to invest in Manchester, and those looking for the best investment areas in the city would be advised to look at city centre areas close to established or emerging business districts. These include MediaCityUK, Castlefield, the Northern Gateway area and the emerging skyscraper district among others. For more information about investing in Manchester property, get in touch with our team today by clicking here.
Sanjit Dhanjal
23rd November 2021

Just why is the UK so popular with foreign property investors?

The UK is known around the world as a safe haven, and the latest data from EY shows that it has maintained its position as the most attractive destination in Europe for Foreign Direct Investment (FDI). The country has retained its top spot throughout the Brexit process and the Covid-19 pandemic, managing to actually increase its share of FDI through those turbulent periods. For this reason, EY believes that the UK will maintain this position for many years to come as its underlying stability and reliability is extremely attractive to investors. Nowhere is this clearer than in the world of property investment. The UK is incredibly popular with foreign property investors, and investment hotspots like Manchester have a strong claim to be the best property markets in the world. But what exactly is it which makes the UK so popular with foreign property investors? Long-term undersupply of new homes The foundation of the UK’s strength as a property investment market is the enormous gap between demand for new homes and the available supply. According to the UK government, at least 345,000 new homes are needed in the UK every year, but their most ambitious targets will only deliver a maximum of 300,000 a year – and the actual number they delivered in 2019-20 was just over 240,000. This shortfall of 100,000 homes a year puts tremendous pressure on the existing housing stock, and fuels demand. This lack of new homes has a dual benefit for investors. Firstly, it constrains supply for home buyers, and this lack of availability is predicted to push house prices up a huge amount in the coming years. The latest Residential Forecasts report from JLL notes that the national average house price has been growing at its fastest pace since 2008, and projects a further increase of 21.7% by 2026. The country’s strongest housing markets such as Manchester (25.8%) and Birmingham (27%) will perform even more impressively than that. By investing in Manchester or Birmingham property, you can secure high levels of capital appreciation in a reliable, predictable way. The second way that the UK’s housing shortage is good for investors concerns monthly rental income – a passive, regular income stream that investors can rely on. If there aren’t enough homes to buy, more people will rent, and therefore competition for homes will increase and rents will go up. Due to supply issues, the number of renters in the UK is expected to exceed the number of homeowners by 2039; in the shorter term, competition for rents is already intensifying and pushing rents upwards. Reports from Zoopla in November 2021 show that UK rents are at a 14-year high having increased by an average of 6% in a month. In a market like Manchester, where there are fewer than 500 homes available to rent in the whole city, JLL believes that additional rental growth of more than 15% will be seen by the end of 2026. Favourable borrowing rates The Bank of England recently voted to maintain the base rate of interest at 0.1%, meaning that borrowing rates are going to remain at a historic low. This offers opportunities for property investors who can either borrow for new purchases while rates remain low, or remortgage existing properties to lock in low rates now before they rise. How much of a risk is there of rates rising in the future? There are indications that 2022 could see at least one, and possibly two, rate rises which will affect those borrowing with a mortgage. Indeed, major high street lenders including Lloyds, Halifax, Barclays and Nationwide have already announced interest rate rises for some of their mortgage products, and it is likely that this signifies a slight shift in the market. However, it is worth noting that there are still many products available at lower rates of interest which investors can take advantage of – but even if mortgage rates do rise slightly, foreign property investors should not be deterred. Even rises of a few percentage points will mean mortgage interest rates in the UK will be notably low compared to historic averages. For example, Zoopla research shows that the base rate averaged approximately 4.5% in the early 2000s. Finally, as mentioned previously, the pace of house price and rental growth anticipated in the UK over the coming years will be far greater than any minimal rise in mortgage rates. They are set to stay at a level so low that investors looking to buy UK property with a mortgage will barely even notice – the income they will earn will make sure of that. A stable, landlord-friendly environment The UK has a political system that is stable and reliable and has proven itself to be resilient through multiple major economic events over the past decades. This is an important factor that property investors should consider as a stable country is a place you can trust with your money. The political and economic system in the UK is built around the housing market, with everything from government bonds to pension funds relying on the health of property to function properly – creating a major incentive for all political parties and non-government bodies to support and encourage the market. There are very few restrictions on who can buy property in the UK, and no discriminatory laws which put foreign investors on a different footing to domestic investors. Financially, the UK has a premium currency that is trusted around the world and contributes to the overall stability of the country and its economy – the twin foundations which support the property investment market. Likewise, it is a simple matter to access capital and borrow to purchase in the UK through its mortgage market. As explained above, it is currently an advantageous time to borrow and buy in the UK thanks to low mortgage interest rates. These interest rates are themselves a tiny fraction of the profit that is on offer through rental income and capital appreciation. Finally, the tax regime in the UK is simple and convenient for foreign investors. Barring a small surcharge on Stamp Duty, you will pay no more than a domestic UK investor on your profits, unlike the situation in countries like Australia where foreign investors face a different set of requirements. You can find out more about the tax implications for overseas investors, and everything else you need to know, by clicking here. Robust property management infrastructure in place The UK’s success and popularity as a destination for foreign property investors has created an ecosystem of experts at all stages of the process. One of the major benefits of investing in UK property is the lettings and management structure in place following purchase and handover. In other countries which don’t have such a robust system in place for foreign investors, there are obstacles that are hard to clear. So many aspects of letting and managing a property are extremely hard for foreign landlords to undertake, including: Marketing and viewings Furnishing the property Key handover and inspections End of tenancy inspection and checks Repairs and maintenance Bi-annual property inspections Rent reviews Because of this, the vast majority of overseas investors rightly decide that it is simply not worth the hassle, time and expense to manage a property themselves and instead appoint a local expert to do so on their behalf – allowing you to sit back, earn your returns and plan your next investment. It is so much easier to deal with a single company from the initial point of sale through to the ongoing lettings and management of your property. Having a single point of contact throughout keeps the process as hassle-free as possible, and at Opulent we are pleased to take this approach and operate our own in-house management company which can take care of everything on your behalf. Choosing to continue your investment journey with Opulent following the completion of the sale comes with many benefits in addition to removing an enormous workload from you. As your trusted partner throughout the sale, you can rely on us to ensure that your returns are maximised, and profits are delivered efficiently and on time. Click here to find out more about the advantages of using the Opulent lettings and property management service The UK is one of the most popular destinations for foreign investment in the world – and that is especially the case when it comes to the property market. The profits on offer through rental income and capital appreciation are high; the political and economic climate is friendly to overseas investors, and the infrastructure to make the process completely hassle-free is in place. For more information about buying UK property as a foreign investor, get in touch with our team today by clicking here.
Sanjit Dhanjal
23rd November 2021

What is the best way to build a passive income for your retirement?

One of the most important questions a person can ask themselves is: how should I prepare for my retirement? While the state pension offers a stable income past retirement age, it is understandable that many people wish to build a larger nest egg that will allow them to live a more comfortable lifestyle once they have finished working. Sound financial planning is vital, yet many don’t make it the main focus until later in their lives. Data shows that more than a fifth of people in Britain do not have a private pension – if this applies to you, we strongly urge you to start your financial planning for retirement as soon as possible. The best way to do this is to build a passive income stream to generate income and replace your salary. Doing so will provide the stability and security you need to enjoy your retirement. Here, we examine some of the main ways you can do this and assess which ones are the most suitable passive income streams to prepare you for a comfortable retirement. Stocks and shares Arguably the most well-known way to build a passive income is to invest in stocks and shares. It comes with some advantages, such as the relatively low entry point and the fact that it is now easier than ever to invest in this way. However, there are also notable downsides to investing in stocks and shares vs. investing in property. While the potential rewards from stocks and shares can be impressive, the risks are also comparatively high when compared to property investment. Their reliability can also be called into question. Unlike the property market – which has proven its ability to weather storms in recent years – investing in stocks and shares is more volatile. The future is much harder to predict with stocks and shares, with the sector vulnerable to factors outside your control. If you are looking to build a passive income for retirement, stability and predictability should be near the top of your list of priorities, and it is uncertain whether stocks and shares can provide that. Find out more about how stocks and shares compare to property investment by clicking here. Saving with a bank Saving with a bank to generate passive income for your retirement is a tried and tested method that is understood by everyone – but will it generate a suitable income to secure a comfortable retirement? Saving with a bank is notably low risk. The Financial Services Compensation Scheme guarantees up to £85,000 of your savings will be protected in the event of a bank going under. This offers a level of predictability to your saving. However, this does not mean it is risk-free. The biggest danger is that the rates offered are unlikely to ever outpace, or even keep up with, inflation. This means that while your money won’t go anywhere, you will be falling further behind and effectively losing money compared to the cost of living at all times. The Bank of England has retained the base rate of interest at 0.1%, and even the best savings accounts do not offer much more interest than that. Meanwhile, the Office for National Statistics announced this month that inflation, or the Consumer Price Index, is at 4.2%. Altogether, this makes saving with a bank a poor option if your goal is to generate passive income for your retirement. Safety is one thing, but can a savings account really be classed as a low-risk option if it leaves you without enough income to live comfortably? Choosing a savings account is simply moving the risk onto your day-to-day life rather than eliminating it entirely. Find out more about how saving in a bank compares to property investment by clicking here. Buy to let property investment In contrast, investing in property offers the best of both worlds. The market has proven its strength, persisting in the face of volatility, and its underlying foundations mean that it is not as susceptible to outside forces as stocks as shares. Likewise, when compared to a savings account, investing in property to fund your retirement offers a comparable level of safety with a hugely more impressive rate of return. The housing charity Shelter estimates that we need to build at least 3 million new homes in the UK over the next 20 years to meet demand as it exists now – a figure which will only increase as the UK’s population does in the future. In reality, the latest UK government figures show that only just over 240,000 new homes are being built per year at the current pace, and that will not be sufficient. This shortfall in available homes is fuelling competition and pushing house prices up on a monthly and annual basis at a pace that has rarely been seen before. Data from the Land Registry shows that property values have increased by almost 12% in the year to date. Furthermore, because there is no prospect of the pace of housebuilding being accelerated to the necessary levels, this situation will continue into the future and lead to an additional 21.7% house price growth by 2026, according to JLL. However, for the purposes of building a regular, passive income for your retirement, what is most interesting is how this affects the rental market. Monthly rental income is your dependable, predictable income stream that will allow you to live comfortably in your retirement years. Luckily, the aforementioned shortage of new homes is good news on this front too. Rents in the UK are rising at their fastest ever pace right now, according to Zoopla. Competition for the best homes pushed up rents 6% in the last quarter alone. The rental market is exceeding pre-pandemic records and reaching new heights on a monthly basis. The lack of supply and the massive demand ensures that the rental market will remain healthy and continue to grow for years to come – making it the perfect choice to provide you with a passive income in retirement. The outlook for rental growth in the UK is so good that the latest forecasts from Savills have actually been upgraded recently to reflect the growth of demand and lack of supply. The company predicts average rental growth of 19.9% by 2026 on top of the gains already made in 2021 – and areas with rapidly growing populations like Manchester, Birmingham and the London Commuter Belt are expected to see rental growth even more impressive than that. Investing in property is the perfect way to develop a passive income stream to fund your retirement, and the team at Opulent are ready and waiting to assist with a comprehensive plan which meets your specific needs. Get in touch today by clicking here and start securing your future.
Sanjit Dhanjal
23rd November 2021

Property investment vs stocks and shares

One of the major questions that investors face is what they should put their money into in order to achieve the maximum possible returns. The most common conundrum is whether property or stocks and shares are the most favourable option. These are the two most well-known and accessible types of investment, and both have attractive characteristics which will appeal to different types of investors. Here, we will explain both and point out the positives and negatives. Property The UK property investment market is known around the world as an opportunity that is both profitable and stable. For many, property is a safe bet that offers the prospect of long-term returns in a simple format. When you purchase a property to rent out, you are doing so with the potential to earn two streams of income: capital appreciation and rental income. The former is the profit you make over the initial purchase price when you sell the property down the line; the latter is the steady monthly income you receive from tenants paying rent. This dual income stream is a major advantage of property investment – and the best part is that the ongoing supply and demand issue (known as the ‘housing crisis’ by many) means that there is little prospect of a slowdown in growth, and therefore profit, anytime soon. The UK Government estimates that as many as 345,000 homes are needed each year in the UK. However, the reality is that we are only building approximately 240,000 a year. That means that every 12 months sees the available supply drop even further, ensuring that demand, house prices and rents continue to increase. With this in mind, it is no surprise to see Savills predict that the average UK house price is set to increase a further 21.1% by 2025. Some areas such as the North West (28.8%) and the West Midlands (24.0%) will exceed that and see even more impressive growth – making property in Manchester and Birmingham even more desirable as an investment than ever before. This combination of profitability and stability is extremely rare and makes UK investment property a very strong choice for investors looking at reliable, long-term profits. This profitability can be magnified by investing off-plan and purchasing a property at a below-market rate which will instantly have earned significant capital appreciation upon completion. For more information about investing off-plan in the UK, get in touch with our team today by clicking here. Stocks and shares Investing in stocks and shares is an altogether more volatile prospect than property. While the potential rewards are high, the chances that you will get that reward are both unreliable and much lower. It is rare that you will be able to find a stock that grows enormously without taking a large risk. The two income streams available when investing in stocks and shares are capital gains (when you sell your shares) and dividends (which are when you receive a portion of a company’s profits relative to how many shares you have). Despite sharing this superficial similarity to property investment, investing in stocks and shares has some features which are quite different. A point in favour of stocks and shares is that a range of mobile phone apps and other small companies are now making it easier than ever to invest – though it should be noted that using a service like eToro or Acorns is unlikely to net you the big payouts. Likewise, it is possible to enter the world of stocks and shares at a much lower entry point than property. Buying a bundle of shares is not as expensive as buying a property. However, again it is worth noting that unless you are buying in bulk – and therefore putting a large amount of money in – it is highly unlikely that you will be able to make the enormous returns that are the main potential benefit of this type of investment. The third point to bear in mind about investing in stocks and shares is that they are nowhere near as reliable as investing in property. Whereas the property market is stable and demand is increasing year-on-year, the stock market is vulnerable to factors outside of your control. The most obvious recent example is the Covid-19 crisis. Whereas property continued to grow throughout it, and demand grew more than ever, it is estimated that more than £191bn was wiped off the FTSE 100 at the beginning of the crisis. Furthermore, many are predicting a tough period ahead for the stock market thanks to a global economy that remains uncertain – in stark contrast to the UK property market which common consensus agrees will continue to grow. Both the property market and the stocks and shares have their benefits but, overall, property investment is the way forward for most investors thanks to its reliability and the strong growth ahead of us. For more information about investing in UK property, get in touch today and speak to our expert team by clicking here.
Sanjit Dhanjal
12th October 2021