The North West of England is now the most popular region for buy-to-let investors. This was the headline in the Times last week based on research done by Savills. The North West takes over from London and the South East as the area of most properties bought using buy-to-let mortgages.
What does this mean exactly? Firstly, that the potential for higher yield is outside London. The research analyst for Savills agrees, he said ‘this is evidence of landlords switching their focus to higher-yielding markets’. Fielding has been aware of for some time, areas like Manchester and Birmingham being popular investment areas for many of our family. Savills expects the house prices to continue to rise in these areas, by as much as double the national average of 10.2% per year compared to only 4.5% in London.
Secondly, this shows a trend of professional investors taking over from amateur landlords. In the article, a Manchester-based estate agents say that buy-to-let landlords largely come from ‘London and the South East’. An example of how professional landlords will do their homework when it comes to finding the best areas to invest and not just in their local areas.
These high figures for the North West come after nationally ‘the number of properties bought by mortgaged landlords fell by 11 percent last year’ due to ‘higher stamp duty costs, loss of tax reliefs’ and stricter ‘lending criteria’. Again, showing that these changes scare off amateurs but can help us as professionals, who do the research, get great returns with the property.
Why the North-West? The Times reports that North West towns have seen an influx of young professionals and students (Manchester, for example, has the highest retention rate for students). This is due to increased employment rates in the areas and a rise in the popularity of city
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