The type of property investment strategy you choose to embark upon is often very much location-dependent. And, to this end, it is essential to consider your target market and their wants first, before you start looking at any properties – or even a map.
Standard buy to let investments for singles, couples and families
One-bedroom houses and new build buy to let apartments, for example, tend to fare better in urban areas, like large towns and cities. That’s because they’re often preferred by young professionals and couples who enjoy being within close proximity to restaurants, bars and other nightlife entertainment spots.
Families, on the other hand are more likely to choose a larger house with three to four bedrooms, a garden, and somewhere in a far quieter, suburban location. They will also be looking for key amenities, like nearby parks, good schools and decent transport links into the town centre. Low crime stats will also feature highly in their search.
Retirement complexes and holiday homes
If you’re fed up with buy to let and favour more of a hands-off approach to property investing, then developments such as care homes or luxury retirement apartments could be more your thing. You’ll find these tucked away in rural locations like the countryside, or smaller seaside resorts. Holiday lets will also be in the countryside or near the beach. Having said that, you will also find these in the form of serviced apartments, in cities popular with tourists for weekend breaks. This includes London, Edinburgh, Newcastle and Glasgow.
Upmarket serviced apartments for young professionals
The northern cities are also popular with property investors looking for high yielding investments. New build serviced apartments in Manchester, Liverpool and Glasgow have all done well in this respect in recent years – especially those located in newly-regenerated docklands areas, where there are clusters of employment such as IT hubs and media centres. But Birmingham too, with its proximity to the capital and improved commuting links via HS2 is also proving lucrative for investors, as is Reading, Norwich and Bristol.
HMOs for students and young professionals
Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMOs) fare well in cities where there are universities nearby. The likes of Oxford, Cambridge, St Andrews, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Cardiff etc. all meet a student’s expectations – although modern student pods are another investment opportunity that many overseas investors are looking into today. There are two reasons for this; firstly, HMOs in the UK are very heavily regulated and many local authorities are rejecting applications for HMO licenses if they believe there are already too many of these in a particular location. Secondly, students themselves tend to veer towards the more modern purpose-built pods.
HMOs can, of course, have young professionals as tenants. London, in particular, is a city where there are thousands of such properties – but then house and apartment prices in the capital are too expensive for most young professionals and couples to buy, so they are often forced to rent in shared houses. And while a shortage of housing remains, this will continue to be the case.
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