Forget About Brexit, Let’s Head North West!
Are you tired of hearing nothing but Brexit at the moment? I for one certainly am! Poor Theresa May, eh? She’s not had it easy, what with taking on the job of getting the UK out of the EU in the first place, but also the backlash she’s received along the way and more recently over her proposed deal.
Over the past few months, Hopewiser has turned to The Times’ Bricks and Mortar to seek clarity on how Britain’s looming divorce from the EU is affecting the property market. We found that rental prices were up due to a lack of buyers in the midst of Brexit uncertainty, meaning there has been a surge in the demand for rental properties, thus giving landlords the power to hike up their prices. Cheeky devils.
That said, it would now seem that Brexit is failing to put certain buyers off claiming their property prizes. Charlie Kannreuther of Savills, who runs both the Chester and Knutsford offices, states that he barely hears the word used in the North West, claiming, “it’s almost as if this part of the country is insulated from it”. Any chance this area can remain whilst the rest of Britain leaves? No? Worth a try.
One wonders why this region lives in blissful ignorance whilst others panic about what state the country will be left in once the die is cast? It’s a well-known fact that the number of Londoners abandoning the capital to move “up North” has reached record-breaking levels, which isn’t surprising considering that more and more homeowners are being enticed by larger homes at a fraction of the cost. Talk about dangling the carrot! This isn’t to mention the increased job opportunities, with such contributions to the Northern Powerhouse as the arrival of MediaCityUK over 10 years ago now. This saw the likes of the BBC and the University of Salford expanding and setting up camp in the new and improved surroundings at Salford Quays.
Despite reports suggesting that that the BBC’s move to Salford provided only a marginal benefit to the region, Sean Anstee of Trafford Council said in 2017 that the relocation of the BBC has helped double the value of Greater Manchester’s digital and creative sector to £3.1bn, and that there are now 55,000 people employed in the sector. It can’t just be us that thinks 55,000 is far from marginal, right? If you work for a large enterprise, you’ll probably agree that businesses expand and relocate to increase prosperity, and personnel will follow suit as and when convenient opportunities arise.
Digressing aside, the aforementioned has no doubt contributed to the rise in people leaving the hustle and bustle of Kensington and Mayfair for the more rural yet still affluent towns and villages of Cheshire. David Lewis of Garrington Property Finders believes that whilst the North-South gulf is as wide as ever, the “potential for strong capital growth is a key part of the appeal”. Amongst the sought after South Manchester belt are the likes of Hale, Alderley Edge, and Wilmslow, in addition to Chester and the Wirral which also lie in desirable commuter belts. With the promise of high-performing schools both in the public and private sector, as well as the ability to enjoy a balance of city work and suburban living, it’s clear to see why these North-West locations are so high in demand. Oh and I almost forgot, you can get to central London via train in just 2 hours!
The Times again confirms our thoughts about the reasons behind the boom in the North West, in that the economic growth of Manchester has significantly driven the rise in prosperity across the region. Those grand mansions that were once a luxury for cotton merchants and traders are now being enjoyed by families whose breadwinners have risen to affluent positions in such industries as IT, the media, and digital technology. Good news for those of you working in those sectors!
Are you looking for recommendations on where to relocate? Perhaps you’ve taken a job in the North of Britain after realising the opportunities the region has to offer. Or maybe you simply want more for your money, and a move to the North West will give you just that whilst still maintaining a good quality of life. Charlie Kannreuther from Savills returns to suggest looking at properties in Chester, which has an average housing price of £245,112 and is an important retail hub for the North West. He expresses that the change from retail shops to coffee shops and restaurants has been extraordinary, contributing to its desirability.
Chester is also home to a number of competitive schools, such as the independent co-ed King’s School, and the all-girls Queen’s School, not to mention the good quality state options as well. If you fancy living within the city walls, there’s a period townhouse up for grabs through Savills, boasting a library and walled garden for £500,000. For higher-end properties, think Curzon Park North and houses lining the River Dee overlooking Chester Racecourse.
Also on Savills’ recommendations list is Knutsford, with an average property price of £438,094, as well as Wrexham in North Wales (10 miles south of Chester), where the average housing price comes in at only £158,839. If you’re looking to get onto the property market, it might be an idea to swoop in on prices like the latter whilst they remain low, as they’re up to a third cheaper than their more established neighbour in Chester. That said, if demand continues to increase in the North West, what is to say that housing prices won’t rise? In these trying times, one should never rest on your laurels.
If you’re planning on relocating, whether that’s to the North West or somewhere else, make sure you take Proximity with you. It’s the must-have app designed by Hopewiser that allows you to find all your nearest transport, leisure, and healthcare facilities. Perfect for when you’re starting out in a new town, village, or city. For your FREE download, head over to the App Store or Google Play today. Hopewiser are all about address data, so please get in touch for more information on our other services.