Property News > Commercial property investors see opportunity in the North of England

Commercial property investors see opportunity in the North of England

The East Midlands and the North of England are seen as regions with big investment and development potential over the next two years.

Indeed, a new study has found that investors are enticed by the prospect of creating offices and flats in parts of the UK, with 39% citing the East Midlands as the best place to invest. 

Additionally, 37% believe the North East and the North West to be a better bet, while 27% see the West Midlands as the best investment opportunity, according to the research by specialist finance company Together.

Government backed initiatives which aim to boost local economies is seen as a major factor in uniting these choices, with almost half of those surveyed claiming that their positivity towards the North stems from the concept of the Northern Powerhouse. Meanwhile, 40% say that they have confidence in the Midlands due to the Midlands Engine initiative. 

Interest in southern regions is more subdued with just 8% of landlords believing that the South East and East Anglia are the optimum locations, while only 3% believe it to be the South West. However, London remains relatively attractive, with 36% maintaining that the capital is the place to invest. 

‘The North of England and the Midlands are attracting interest from commercial landlords who can see real opportunities to expand over the next two years,’ said Andrew Charnley, head of corporate relationships at Together.

‘The Northern Powerhouse and Midlands Engine initiative are playing a part in helping to boost both areas, but landlords are very focused on where they see the opportunities with differences in which sectors are seen as offering the best chances for developments,’ he explained.

‘That underlines the need for lenders who do not take a one size fits all approach and are willing to be flexible in responding to what are often very tight deadlines for funding to be agreed,’ he added.

The study, which questioned a national panel of commercial landlords about their economic confidence in the UK, also found that over 40% plan to increase their stakes in the Midlands over the next two years, while roughly the same amount plan to do the same in the North of England. 

As a result, both the Midlands and the North are likely to see increases in the developments of offices and flats. 49% of northern investors see office space as the best area to maximise returns while 44% of Midlands investors agree. Landlords also see strong potential in the development of flats across both regions, but there are differences with landlords seeing strong opportunities in semi-commercial developments in the North and in retail in the Midlands.

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