Leeds Buy To Let Guide
Leeds Buy To Let Guide

Property Investment In Leeds

Located in West Yorkshire, Leeds is one of the largest and most centrally located cities in the UK. Thriving economic prospects, combined with a high demand for living space from potential tenants, make this northern city an optimum location for Leeds property investment. There are many valuable reasons to invest in Leeds, such as capital growth and the rising rates of rental yields.

Market demand for Leeds property has reached new heights due to a surge in the population. So what are the factors that contribute to the appeal of this city as an area to live, work, and study in, and what does this mean for property investment in Leeds?


Leeds is considered one of the UK’s biggest business cities outside of London. Home to a diverse mix of businesses, this Yorkshire hotspot has something for everyone. More graduates than ever are choosing to reside in the city upon completion of their studies. Consequently, leading employers are flocking to the city to take advantage of this influx of new talent.

Industry In Leeds Property Investment

What industry is Leeds known for?

The industries that Leeds is most known for are the tech sector, the finance sector, the manufacturing industry and the creative industries. Leeds has the second largest financial sector outside of London, along with being ranked one of the UK’s top creative cities and boasting a digital tech sector that’s worth £1 billion.

As the UK’s second largest economy and second biggest financial sector, Leeds city region is a hotspot for financial and professional services and has been coined the Financial Centre for Excellence by UK Trade & Investment, helping to establish the financial sector of the city, as well as neighbouring cities such as Bradford, Halifax and York.

The city region contributes the most GVA from financial and professional services in the country outside of London, with its strengths residing within banking, law, insurance and financial technologies. Approximately £4.5 billion is being generated year upon year, with predictions for substantial growth in the future.

Leeds is renowned for its world-class digital facilities. Becoming one of the UK’s most elite digital hubs has been achieved through momentous hard work and determination as Leeds has continued to push the boundaries, paving the way for its relentless success.

Leeds’ technology sector is projected to create 4,000 more jobs in the city region over the next ten years, with recruitment for digital roles forecast to rise by 15% per cent. In a 2017 report by Tech Nation, the Leeds tech sector was reportedly booming, with salaries rising by more than 25 per cent over the last five years.

Tech Sector Property Investment Leeds

The digital GVA for Leeds is £668 million, and the city was home to 314 new start-ups in just 2017 alone with 23,734 digital jobs and an average salary of £50,041 within the technology industry.

Businesses In Leeds Property Investment

How many businesses are there in Leeds?

There are over 32,000 VAT-registered businesses in Leeds, with a mixture of large, small, and medium-sized enterprises based in the city. Leeds is also home to a number of NHS offices, including NHS England, and houses more than thirty national and international banks, creating employment for over 13,000 people.

Thanks to the strength of its business scene, Leeds generates 5 per cent of England’s total economic output of £60.5 billion and has an economy that’s larger than nine European countries. A number of big names in business have a headquarters based in this city, including Asda Walmart, GHD,, and more.

More high-profile businesses are turning their attention towards Leeds and launching offices in the area. Channel 4, for instance, recently announced plans to make Leeds the location of their second headquarters, alongside their London based HQ.

Channel 4’s new plans are a prime example of how more businesses are choosing to look away from London and head up North. UKTV is another example of a company who have opened up offices in Leeds, with 11 popular broadcasting brands such as Gold, Dave, and Alibi.

With such a high student population, businesses in Leeds have access to the freshest pool of talent. This, combined with the strength of the Leeds economy and the rich culture of the city, is a major selling point that’s attracting new businesses to the city, along with inspiring the launch of new start-up’s.

Leeds has a thriving start-up scene, with a total of around 380 start-up businesses having launched in the city. Like in many other UK cities, co-working has become a major trend, and Leeds doesn’t fall short of a good choice of co-working spaces for start-up’s or freelancers to consider.

Due to the buzzing business scene, Leeds has seen a staggering increase in employment with 6.1% growth in private sector jobs recorded from 2014 to 2015. An additional 25,000 jobs are forecasted to be created over the next decade, strengthening this Yorkshire city even further.

Education Leeds Buy To Let


When it comes to property investment, cities with high student numbers and a thriving university scene tend to generate some of the best opportunities for investors. Home to one of the UK’s largest student populations and considered one of the best student cities in the country, student property investment in Leeds is certainly a worthwhile venture.

What is Leeds University famous for?

The University of Leeds is often famously ranked among the top ten universities in the UK. Established in 1904, the University of Leeds is most famous for courses in marketing, business, and engineering, and has a choice of over 500 undergraduate and 200 postgraduate degrees.

Aside from offering some of the best academic teachings in the country, there are plenty of other reasons why so many new students are drawn to this city year after year. Much like other Northern cities like Liverpool and Manchester, students living in Leeds can benefit from higher affordability than they would in the South. Everything from rented accommodation to a night out is cheaper in Leeds than London.

For those who aren’t too keen on the nightlife scene, the city is also filled with things to do and see, with excellent shopping facilities, an eclectic restaurant scene, and a buzzing music scene.

Students In Leeds Investment Property

How many students are in Leeds?

Leeds has a student population of over 60,000, with more than 38,000 students enrolled in the University of Leeds. Amongst the student numbers in the city, the University of Leeds also welcomes over 9,000 international students from more than 170 countries worldwide.

The popularity of Leeds as a student city not only boosts the success of student property investment but also makes purchasing residential buy to let properties in Leeds an equally lucrative option. With so many fantastic business opportunities available throughout this city — from tech start-ups to household names —  owning a buy to let Leeds property allows you to cater to the growing demand from young professional tenants.

Leeds Buy To Let Housing


Things are looking promising when it comes to the Leeds housing market, with rising house prices and growing rental demand increasing the potential of investments in the city. The average property price in Leeds stands at around £178,735, making the city a good location for both first-time buyers and investors looking to get more bang for their buck.

High demand and low supply is the catalyst for Leeds property investment. The student market and volume of young professionals moving to Leeds, or remaining in the area after graduation, means that the demand for housing is high. This is fantastic news for landlords, investors, and developers as the yields from rental income are similarly high. Homeowners and those embarking on their first property venture will benefit as house prices in Leeds are set to steadily increase over the forthcoming years.

A report from IP Global states that Leeds is struggling to meet housing demands. 90,000 new homes are needed by 2021, but with only 60,000 in the pipeline, there’s a definite shortfall.

Hamish Pound, the head of investment at IP Global, said:

“We advise investors to focus on supply and demand because an imbalance here is likely to provide the greatest gains.”

The Centre for Cities report has discovered that the city centre population had increased at seven times the rate of London in recent decades, along with a 34 per cent rise in employment. Leeds witnessed the second highest growth in England, just below Manchester, with a population increase of 151 per cent.

Is Leeds a good place to invest in property?

Leeds is a good place to invest in property thanks to the growing population, affordable housing costs, strong prospects for economic growth, and high average rental yields. Those looking for an investment property for sale in Leeds can expect attractive returns from both rental costs and capital appreciation.

Like with any investment, however, it’s important to research the market in detail and seek out the areas of the city with the best potential. So where can you find the best investment opportunities for buy to let properties in Leeds?

What are the best rental areas in Leeds?

Some of the best areas for buy to let investment in Leeds are Leeds city centre, Headingley, Woodhouse, Burley, and Hyde Park. Investors that buy property in these areas can benefit from the most attractive rental yields, the highest populations, and the most affordable prices in the city.

While Leeds as a whole has an average rental yield of 4.29 per cent, certain areas have been known to generate even higher yields. Investors looking for buy to let properties in Leeds city centre can expect yields of around 5 per cent, while neighbourhoods within the LS6 postcode can make attractive yields of up to 10 per cent, depending on the investment.

Vector Map Of Leeds Investment Property Rental Yields
Culture In Leeds Property Investment


 Leeds has long been recognised as a thriving cosmopolitan city. With so many historical landmarks, beautiful architecture, and a lot of cultural influence in the fields of music, film, art, sport, and TV, there’s a reason why Leeds is considered one of the UK’s most innovative and exciting cities.

What is Leeds most famous for?

Leeds is famous for being the financial, commercial, and cultural hotspot of West Yorkshire, with rich historical roots. Once a key frontrunner in the industrial revolution, Leeds is now known for its lively student scene, music scene, bar and restaurant scene, and cultural significance.

A number of big music names were formed in Leeds, with popular bands like Alt-J and Kaiser Chiefs. Home to one-half of the Leeds and Reading music festival, herds of music fans flock to Bramham Park each year, along with enjoying live music at one of the many venues in the city. For literature fans, another point of interest is the fact that JRR Tolkien, author of Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit, was once a reader and professor at the University of Leeds.

What is there to do in Leeds

There’s plenty of things to do and see in Leeds. Art and history lovers can explore one of the cities inspiring galleries and museums, music fans can head to the live music venues, nature lovers can enjoy parks and wildlife attractions, and foodies can sample the delicacies from a range of local eateries.

Theatre In Leeds Property Investment

Exuding opulence through its theatres in the heart of the city, Leeds Grand Theatre and Opera House were built in 1878 and stand strong as archaic buildings, hosting performances from country’s finest acts. The first performance was a Shakespearian classic Much Ado About Nothing on 18th November 1878, but since then, these venues have displayed hundreds of shows including Opera North, Northern Ballet, Sister Act, Shrek and Wicked.

Guilded mosaics, bold marble and intricate ironwork are the many features of the historic shopping arcades within the city. The Victorian Quarter is one of the most opulent of them all and can be found under the biggest stained-glass roof in Britain, oozing with character and standing strong as a significant tourist spot. Increasing levels of tourism within the city spark major opportunity for Leeds property investment as the influx in population and visitors push up demands for suitable housing across the city

Discovering a world of modern art is easily achieved in Leeds, The Henry Moore Institute is a one of a kind gallery showcasing some of the world’s greatest sculptures. A host of inspiring exhibitions work tirelessly to hold on to their established reputation as well as having the strongest collections of British sculpture in the country, with over 800 objects and 400 works on paper. Home to one of the UK’s oldest cinemas, Hyde Park Picture House opened during World War I and began showing news bulletins, war footage, and morale-boosting dramas.


There are plenty of regeneration opportunities in Leeds. Throughout recent years investment in traditional forms such as road and rail has helped to enhance the city through the creation of local jobs and supporting local businesses by driving growth.

Numerous initiatives, such as the Leeds Digital Festival and other digital enterprise schemes help growth-focused businesses scale up and achieve digital transformation. These are fantastic examples of how the city is supporting local growth through the encouragement of developing new business ventures across the city, helping establish a more attractive place to live through the emerging talent.

What's In Store For Leeds Buy To Let

What’s in store for Leeds?

Leeds has a number of exciting regeneration plans in place, and one of the most major developments is the £161 million master plan for Leeds train station. This will include the introduction of a new platform, two new footbridges connecting to the new HS2 station, and 3,000,000 square foot of commercial developments. This regeneration is Leeds is set to provide a catalyst for the city’s economy, attracting a larger demographic to the city as the expansive plans maximise its appeal to commuters and present a healthier opportunity for investment.

Other new projects include the new Citu Climate Innovation District. Citu is set to be the UK’s biggest sustainable urban community, combining Scandinavian design with cutting-edge technology and introducing the first new homes to be built in Leeds city centre in over ninety years.

Determined and ambitious schemes such as the Northern Powerhouse are injecting investment into the city’s existing infrastructure. Reports show that the economy of Leeds grew faster than London since the scheme was launched at the end of June 2014.

“The city’s urban renaissance has brought opportunities for people living across the city and its surrounding areas, and it is vital that it continues”,

Andrew Carter, Centre for Cities CEO.

Opportunity for development in Leeds is substantial and Leeds South Bank represents one of the largest and most exciting city regeneration initiatives in the country as estimates have suggested that this area alone could produce over 4,000 homes across the city, which is central for Leeds buy to let.

Aire Valley also provides significant investment opportunities with more than 400 hectares of land for development with the potential to create over 12,000 homes. As these areas are experiencing mass regeneration, infrastructure will also be boosted along with the enhancement of local amenities, leaving surrounding properties increasing in value and making it a prime time to invest in buy to let Leeds.

Why invest in Leeds?

From the high rental yields to the exciting prospects for capital growth, property investment in Leeds makes a fantastic option for buy to let investors seeking attractive returns. Thanks to the huge business scene, high levels of demand are also helping increase the attraction of buy to let properties in Leeds.

Still need some convincing? Get in touch with our property investment experts today and we can talk you through the reasons why Leeds is a good place to invest in property, and help you find the perfect UK buy to let investment for you.

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