New data reveals the strength of the student property market in north-west England.
Figures released by Experience Invest show that 26% of investors based in Liverpool are at least considering putting money into student property investment.
This compares with figures of around 10% for investors based in other parts of the UK.
Why is student property investment in Liverpool proving so popular? The city’s four universities, including the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, have a student population in excess of 40,000 and numbers are rising.
A number of large, purpose-built student developments have opened in the city over the past few years, providing plenty of very attractive opportunities for investors.
But with student intakes rising each year and the market already under-supplied, the number of new beds becoming available has done little to reduce the high levels of demand.
Commenting on the data, Experience Invest’s Jerald Solis says: “Liverpool is one of the UK’s most popular cities with current student numbers increasing at a steady rate year on year.”
Pure student numbers are not the only factor driving up demand for student accommodation – and investment yields.
Many people studying for a degree or other higher education qualification are increasingly shifting away from traditional student accommodation avenues in search of higher living standards and better quality housing.
Both university halls of residence and shared family homes are losing out among certain key student groups in favour of the high-quality amenities and superior levels of privacy that purpose-built accommodation offers.
While halls of residence may lack mod cons such as wi-fi and can require students to share bathing facilities, private purpose-built accommodation generally offers modern amenities and even on-site leisure facilities.
As a result, this kind of student property asset is experiencing continually increasing demand, and is delivering strong yields for investors.
This, combined with relatively low purchase prices and full management making for a very hands-off investment, can make a very attractive package for investors.
As Liverpool is one of the key markets in which such opportunities appear, the draw for those investors who are based or active in the city is strong.
However, it is important not to neglect normal research and due diligence when investing in a student property. The reason for the shift towards purpose-built accommodation is rooted in quality.
Despite high demand and low supply, properties that are lacking in quality or are poorly-located can still deliver a performance that is only a shadow of that achieved by their more premium, better-located counterparts.