February 2017

Investors look to the North as construction outside capital hits record levels following London property plunge prediction

Author: White Rose Office Park

Leeds construction crane

Since the end of 2016, construction levels in UK regional cities have hit record levels according to the Deloitte Real Estate Crane Survey, with this recent surge signalling the highest level of activity since the reports initial publish in 2002.

Throughout 2016 Leeds saw 20 major construction schemes completed, including the highest level of office space delivered to market since 2007, it was also recorded within the survey of six new office starts in the city.

These insights come in contrast to forecasts central London office space construction is set to plunge following the Brexit vote. The price of London property continues to be uncomparable to other major cities, and as such, it is no surprise that global investors continue to hunt for better deals outside the capital; particularly in Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham and Belfast. Non-coincidentally – two of these cities feature within The Northern Powerhouse proposal.

Many commercial development funds suspended trading last summer as the Brexit vote was revealed, in a bid to prevent investors withdrawing their savings while fund managers were forced to revalue their portfolios. However, while the Brexit vote came as a shock to many, other events in its wake, including the US election and the upcoming elections in France and Germany have seen it become less of a risk than before.

While London may still be facing adversity with the state of commercial development plans unknown, it is the rest of the UK that will begin to reap the benefits as reports have suggested the price of London property will continue to rise, global investors are now looking for cheaper deals outside of the capital, and this is apparent across all sectors including retail, office space, hotels, residential and student accommodation projects as the North’s property portfolio continues to strengthen.

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February 2017

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