One way to make money in property is to look for places that seem undervalued. In short, locations which you think are or which have the potential to be more highly priced than they currently are.
These locations aren’t always easy to spot. However, here are Property Insider’s latest thoughts on UK property investment locations that could be undervalued and which we think are well worth a look as a result:
Manchester. We think an average price of around £146,000 (Land Registry new UK House Price Index) is terrifically undervalued for a city which is only second (or at most third) behind London for its economic importance …. and surely one of Europe’s most important second-tier cities to boot. There’s currently a massive amount of development here, which is kind of screaming out the message that there’s not enough property supply to meet demand. So it’s hard to believe that what is, in all honestly, bargain basement pricing will last for long.
Regular Pi readers will know we’re big fans of Manchester as a really promising investment location …. almost to the point of obsession. But with very good reason. Read some of our other reports to find out why:
Warrington. Unlike many northern towns the one-time new town of Warrington has never been disadvantaged by a faded industrial past – it didn’t really have one. So it’s always been the kind of place with an eye firmly on the future. That, plus a fantastic strategic location on the road and rail network and it’s easy to see why so many businesses seem to want to locate or relocate here. Yes, it’s kind of unglamorous but we reckon Warrington must have some of the most promising prospects for growth of anywhere in the north west.
Reading. The people of Reading must have done something bad, very bad, to be overlooked for city status time and time (and time) again. It’s something that only serves to disguise the fact that Reading is one of the most important ‘de facto’ cities in the south east. It’s home to more UK and overseas company headquarters than you can shake a stick at and there’s lots of potential, and room, for expansion here. As an investment location it’s hardly cheap already of course, but we think pricing here has potential to go even higher in future.
Slough. It’s kind of fashionable to knock Slough. But property investors ought to be dealing in hard facts, not picture postcard views. And on that basis Slough has a lot to recommend it. The town is a massive commercial centre that is only going to grow. (Watch out for Heathrow expansion which, if it ever happens, could be very big for Slough!) In comparison to most places in the south east it still looks good value.
Luton. Luton shares something in common with Slough. It’s overlooked by many investors simply because it isn’t fashionable to like it. Think of it in hard investment terms though and you’ll see it has all the fundamentals that underpin a healthy property market – a broad economic base with lots of industry and commerce, good accessibility, a growing population (almost 100,000 between 2011-14 alone) and lots of housing demand.
Bristol. Let’s sit down and invent the perfect small city. That place would probably be Bristol. Bristol is a place that’s small enough to be human, yet big enough to offer all the facilities you need, and a good range of employment opportunities too. In the online age the fact that Bristol (including nearby Bath) has the second largest digital sector in the country after London, employing over 60,000 people, can’t be ignored either.
If you discount the uber-desirable Clifton then prices in most of the city still good very good value indeed.
Here’s a report on Bristol which you might find interesting: 17 Reasons To Invest In Bristol
Exeter. There’s a tendency for historic cities that offer a good quality of life to put up the ‘no vacancies, no more development please’ signs. To its credit Exeter isn’t one of those places. There are ambitious plans, already underway, to expand the economy and the new homes that people need …. but do it in a thoughtful way that actually enhances the city. We think it’s a pragmatic strategy that will pay off for Exeter, as well as investors who invest here.
Peterborough. Peterborough is the city that just keeps growing, and growing …. and growing. (According to The Centre For Cities Peterborough was fastest growing city in the UK in 2014. The population has risen by a massive 18% since 2001 alone – some going.) The underlying reason, immigration – mainly as a result of the growing economy and demand for labour here – may be controversial, but that means more demand for property with a capital D. Peterborough is far enough from London not to be affected by inflated southern property prices so an investor’s money still goes a long way here.
Nottingham. Look at the facts. It’s a major regional centre. It’s a buzzing place to be. There’s lots of development ongoing or planned for the city region, including nearby Derby. It has one of the biggest and best universities in the country. So how come Nottingham is it one of the cheapest places to buy property in the country?
Answers on a postcard please. Your guess is as good as ours. Buy now while stocks last.
Doncaster. Stock market investors might be familiar with the idea of penny shares. That is, investments that are widely misunderstood, ignored by big investors and as a result are cheap to buy into. They’re often investments which are so cheap it is difficult to foresee them falling in value and which, in the right circumstances, could return a gain belying their initial modest proportions.
If towns were companies Doncaster would probably be one of the most promising penny shares. Misunderstood. Overlooked. Value for money. (OK you’ll need more than a penny to invest here, but prices start at around £35,000.) The only way is up …. surely?
We hope you have found this Property Insider article useful. While you’re here, why not look at what else we can do for property professionals and investors.