Leeds, Manchester, Sheffield, Liverpool – for years now these cities have been part of the great Northern Powerhouse.
The term, coined by then Chancellor George Osborne back in 2014, referred to the cities uniting economically to ‘take on the world’, or at least the dominance of London and the South East in the UK. And certainly, there has been a push for investment and jobs in the north, in addition to massive regeneration projects.
Even the BBC became less London-centric by moving its HQ to Salford, Manchester. Infrastructure too has been given a boost with investment in the Great North Rail Project to make travel quicker between northern cities. There are also plans for HS2 to eventually reach as far as Leeds.
In terms of property, within the past couple of months, Zoopla recorded Manchester, Liverpool and Leeds as the cities with the highest growth in property values at 6.6%, 6.5% and 5.4% respectively.
Manchester is one of the cities to have benefitted most from the concept of a Northern Powerhouse. In fact, it’s often seen as at the heart of it.
A vibrant, growing and increasingly confident city with a population of 552,858, Manchester enjoyed employment growth of 84% between 2002 and 2015, and it’s the top city for young professionals outside London today, according to Hamptons International.
At present, the average property in Manchester is £242,311 and the average rental yields 5.37%. Growth of 15.76% is expected over the next five years.
Liverpool hasn’t benefitted in the same terms as Manchester from the influx of population and investment the Northern Powerhouse has promised, but it’s starting to. The huge Liverpool Waters scheme is a massive £5.5 billion transformation of the city’s docklands area. It’s bringing new commercial spaces, residential apartments, retail outlets, restaurants, museums and an arts quarter. It is also sure to boost tourism.
Property analysts say the Baltic Triangle, which takes in the Liverpool Water scheme as well as the city centre, can command yields of 8.1%. The city’s population is almost half a million, with 498,000 residents.
The average property in Liverpool is around £186,527, with rental yields sitting at 5.30%. Property growth of 8.45% is predicted for the next five years.
With a population of around 300,820, Newcastle is the largest most northern city in England. There has been plenty of city centre regeneration, especially at the £350 million urban development Newcastle Helix. More development has taken place at Stephenson Quarter (£200 million) while Ouseburn is also upgrading.
Newcastle is a city with a large number of digital tech start-ups. A number of high-profile companies also have a huge presence here, such as BT and Virgin at Gosforth Business Park and Deloitte, Greggs and Nestle.
The average property in Newcastle is £198,307. Rental yield is an average of 6.50% and price growth in five years is expected to be around 6.20%.
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