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Why does Birmingham trump London for property investment?

by Nikki Dale -

Industry experts, such as Knight Frank and Berkley Homes are predicting great things for Birmingham in 2018 and the coming years.  There appears to be a very “can-do” attitude among the policy–makers and the arrival of the HS2 high-speed rail link to London will only cement the city’s future standing.

Today, Birmingham is a city of outstanding statistics with a regional economy in excess of £90 billion. It is also a city setting an exceptional benchmark for a quality lifestyle – with the cost of living some 60% lower than London.

Thanks to its innovative 18th Century industrialists building a canal network to aid trading networks, the city has more miles of canals than Venice with 56 kilometres of waterways. For over 250 years Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter has been a national epicentre for jewellery design– producing an estimated 40% of the UK’s jewellery.

  • 5% economic growth rate in the last 5 years
  • £62bn spent on its transport infrastructure
  • 6050 people moved from London to Birmingham in 2015
  • No.1 region for job creation projects outside of London
  • Top UK regional city ranked for quality of life
  • A city focused on cultural diversity
  • 5 university’s with over 73 ,000 UK & Overseas students
  • 8000 acres of parks and open space

Why is Birmingham a property investment hotspot in 2018?

 Knight Frank’s 2017 Birmingham Report was particularly insightful where values are predicted to hit £500 per square metre by 2020.

“A year ago we suggested values for the highest quality bespoke residential schemes in central Birmingham would reach £500 psf by 2020.  We now have evidence of some niche schemes hitting £425 to £450 psf, so we are sticking with this forecast”      Mark Evans, Knight Frank

Birmingham is the youngest city in Europe, with under 25’s accounting for nearly 40% of its population – and with approximately 80% of city centre residents being tenants, there appears to be considerable room for growth in the sector – as the benefits of professionally managed Buy-to-Let over the private rented sector begin to be realised by the investor.

Birmingham is more attractive than ever with the arrival or imminent arrival of,  HSBC, Deutsche Bank, and HMRC and an expansion of PricewaterhouseCoopers Offices and the work force employed on the HS2 to London project have combinedly brought more young professionals to the area and underpin the domestic demand for high quality rental housing.

The £56 billion development of HS2 will slash current rail journey times from London by over 30 minutes (currently 1 hour 15 mins)  when fully operational.  The two new HS2 railway stations, Birmingham Curzon and Interchange, are key to massive amounts of regeneration across the wider region, which is predicted to create 50,000 jobs in Birmingham and Solihull.

By 2031, Birmingham will have undergone a transformational change that will see substantial economic growth furthering its dynamic presence on the international stage. There are six economic zones that will provide the stimulus for economic activity within high quality business environments, each one accelerating the delivery of growth to benefit the city.  These zones will attract £1.5bn investment programme generating 1.8 million square metres of new floor space and create around 50,000 new jobs.

Birmingham named fastest-improving city in the UK in which to live and work

 Last year, Birmingham was named fastest-improving city in the UK in which to live and work, which is no surprise with all the recent investment and development the city has attracted. With Birmingham on its upwards cycle of being one of the top cities to invest, live and work, and a host of future development plans in the pipeline, there is no sign of the city slowing down any time soon.

It will also proudly host of one of the world’s most recognisable sporting events – The Commonwealth Games in 2022 – the projected overall cost of the Games is expected to reach £750 million, with the government covering around £560 million of that figure and the local council contributing £190 million.

Birmingham is renowned for its vibrant nightlife, cultural event, shopping and amazing restaurants.

  • Birmingham has more Michelin-starred restaurants than any other UK city outside London
  • The Balti Triangle with its 100+ Balti houses, attract over 20,000 visitors each week
  • Over 36,000 people watch musical performances by the world-famous City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) every year.
  • It’s the only city outside of London to have a Selfridges, John Lewis, Debenhams, House of Fraser and Harvey Nichols

Universities & Education

Birmingham is an attractive proposition when it comes to schools, further education and Universities. Based on A-levels alone, the region has six of the top 26 schools in the country, while 206 schools in the region are ‘outstanding’ according to National standards body, Ofsted. Indeed, Birmingham has the highest proportion of local authority run Schools with this rating.

University of Birmingham

UoB is ranked amongst the top 100 Universities globally, its work bringing people from across the world to Birmingham, including researchers and more than 5,000 international students from over 150 countries. Characterised by a tradition of innovation, research at the University has pushed forward the impact on people’s lives.

Aston University

Founded in 1895 and a University since 1966, Aston is a long established, research led University known for its world-class teaching quality and strong links to industry, government and commerce.

Please contact one of our Property Experts to find out more about our current and new Birmingham projects.


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