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28 Oct, 2018

Why Manchester Is One of the Youngest Cities in the UK

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    A Burgeoning Northern City

    With the average age of people in Manchester standing at 33.1 years old back in 2016, the city has been coined one of the UK’s youngest places.

    Manchester was named the youngest UK city outside of London back in 2017, bringing in more and more interest from young professionals and students throughout recent years, and helping to meld it into the vibrant, exciting Northern hub that it is today.

    But why does Manchester have such a large population of young people, and what does this mean for those interested in investing in Manchester?

    One-quarter of Manchester’s entire population was reported to be between the ages of 20 and 29 according to population figures released in 2014, and average ages of 33.4 in 2010 fell to 33.1 by 2016.

    Despite the average age increasing in the most recent years, with those from the previous years staying, working and thriving in the city, it still stays a much younger city than England & Wales in general, bettered only by the likes of Bristol and the West Midlands.

    Manchester has always been a city of young people, and that number continues to exponentially grow, increasing the demand for property and therefore the opportunity for investors.

    If you want to find out more about Manchester and its stance as one of the youngest UK cities, keep reading for some further insight.

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    Manchester’s Business Opportunities

    Part of the reason why Manchester is so popular with young people is the wide range of business opportunities available.

    Of all the residents that moved to Manchester’s city centre from 2001 to 2011, almost 60% had a professional degree.

    MediaCityUK is a major driving force behind the business scene of the city.

    Located in a former wasteland of Manchester’s docks, the area is home to offices for huge brands like the BBC, Kellogg’s, and ITV.

    Peel Group have already announced last year that major development and expansion will come to MediaCityUK over the next ten years, and so it will continue to be a driving force in the city for years to come.

    A large amount of Manchester young professionals is likely to consist of people that moved to the city from other UK areas such as London.

    New figures released revealed that record numbers of Londoners were leaving the English capital and heading up North, and it’s not hard to see why.

    Northern cities like Manchester are renowned for their affordability compared to cities down South, with everything from the cost of shopping to property costs being significantly lower.

    From an investment standpoint, this makes the city a lot more accessible too, perhaps for those starting out with lesser capital, and exciting as the city continues to grow and flourish into something even greater than it already is.

    Manchester dock view

    Luxury City-Centre Apartments

    As Manchester experienced rapid growth from 2001 to 2011, the number of city-centre residents grew by 83% and had an overall increase of 20,000.

    Young professionals are less inclined to buy homes, preferring the flexibility and freedom of renting.

    Renting a property such as a city centre apartment gives young people the chance to live close to their workplace and all the city’s attractions and amenities.

    Apartments with a more high-quality and luxury edge are amongst some of the most popular types of property for young professionals.

    Manchester investment opportunities at RWinvest include luxury apartments like Caxton Hall apartments located in Manchester city centre, with impressive guaranteed rental yields of 9% for two years.

    Again, these sorts of properties are perfect for the young professionals living in the Manchester area, as they give them ease of access to the city around them while also being a forward-thinking upgrade from the apartments and ‘student digs’ of yesteryear.

    View of Manchester

    Manchester's Student Population

    But it isn’t just young professionals that are contributing to the high levels of Manchester’s young people.

    The student population in Manchester is one of the largest in the UK, with around 85,000 students studying in the city’s prestigious institutions.

    Much like the appeal for those moving from London to work in Manchester, there are plenty of other benefits to living in Manchester vs London.

    The cost of living in Manchester for students is a lot lower than it would be in other UK cities.

    Not only that, but Manchester has everything a student needs in a city, with a lively nightlife, rich culture, and fantastic shopping and attractions.

    With handy campuses that are built into the city (much like in Liverpool) and also transport solutions such as the integrated tram system, some would even argue that for first-time city livers and students, it’s a bit more of a manageable city to get around, too.

    International students make up a large portion of Manchester’s student numbers, with the University of Manchester welcoming around 5,135 students, the UK’s largest number, back in 2016.

    In the 2017-18 term, the University had over 15,000 international students in total.

    Since a large percentage of overseas students are from more affluent backgrounds, the demand for high-quality, purpose-built student accommodation is at an all-time high.

    Today’s students are spending more to rent accommodation that’s a cut above the rest, refusing to settle for the dingy university halls and shared housing that once dominated the student property market.

    It is for this reason that student accommodation investment opportunities now include a big focus on more private luxury apartments that are fully furnished and equipped with things like high-speed Wi-Fi and round-the-clock security and maintenance.

    For investors, these sorts of properties are perfect for long-term investment, as they’re kitted out and future-proofed in order to adjust with the city and stay modern as it evolves over the years.

    Students inside HMO

    Attractive Investment Prospects

    From the heightened young population to the world-class universities, those looking to invest in student accommodation should consider Manchester.

    The affordability of Manchester is a big reason that the city has made a name for itself as a UK investment hotspot.

    House prices come to an average of £532,113 in London — a figure that’s over double as much as Manchester’s £238,889 average.

    Both Manchester student investment and Manchester residential property investment is a great decision for investors looking to make their next venture.

    When you invest in Manchester property, you’ll access the potential for plenty of financial growth, with some of the highest rental yields in the country.

    Aside from offering attractive rental yields, Manchester is also a city with lots of potential for capital growth.

    The city has played a big role in the economic growth of the UK ever since the Industrial Revolution and continues to improve to this day.

    New developments such as those under the Northern Powerhouse initiative are doing big things for Manchester, massively improving the economy and day-to-day life for those living in Manchester.

    Northern Regeneration

    Plans under this initiative include Northern Powerhouse Rail, which aims to improve connectivity between key Northern cities such as Manchester and Liverpool.

    Manchester young professionals will be sure to benefit from this, as will those from other Northern cities that need a hassle-free way to travel for professional networking in Manchester.

    Manchester’s Northern neighbour, Liverpool, has become just as popular as a property investment hotspot in recent years.

    Liverpool also has a high population of students and young professionals, along with offering fantastic rental yields.

    Our Hamilton Hub property, for instance, was the lowest priced property investment in the UK, priced from as low as £45,450 with an 8% net rental return.

    Life after death, green sprout on the coals after the fire. Rebirth of nature after the fire. Rebirth concept

    The City's Vast Cultural Draw

    One thing that can’t be left out when discussing Manchester as an important and highly in-demand spot in the UK is its cultural importance and draw.

    This is something that has a direct impact on its popularity, it’s recognition as one of the best places to live and work in the country, and also its attractiveness as a forward-thinking investment prospect and viable alternative to pricey London real estate.

    Manchester is well-known, not just throughout young people and students domestically that want to go and work there, but also internationally.

    Manchester is a globally recognised city, and it’s often referred to as the UK’s second capital city.

    As the Northern Powerhouse initiative and the ‘north-shoring’ of businesses continues, this moniker will only strengthen and become more important, both to those living in the city and those investing in it.

    Ball Park Figures

    When thinking about international student investment interest in Manchester, it’s also extremely important to think about international tourism, and the city’s local football teams are a colossal part of that.

    Manchester City are one of the most successful clubs in the world currently, and certainly in England, winning multiple Premier League titles over the last few years and no doubt driving interest and further regeneration to the city.

    Manchester United, on the other hand, another legendary and world-renowned club, were estimated as the third most valuable in the world in 2019, at over £3 Billion.

    With one of the largest supporting young fanbases globally they have been recognised as the most valuable brand in football, something more than what’s just on the pitch.

    Whether you’re a football fan or not, these sorts of statistics are indicative of a worldwide business and global brand that transcends football, exciting investors in the process.

    In China, a country that was reported as having over 253 million Manchester United fans in December last year, Manchester is an extremely popular student property investment choice.

    As an example of how ‘North-Shoring’ and a transition away from London investment has already begun, a report from a popular Chinese property listing site in 2018 stated that interest in the city had skyrocketed 250% year on year in January.

    This of course isn’t to say that Manchester’s football heritage is the sole reason for the level of investment in the city, but it certainly doesn’t hurt.

    Ready to Invest in Manchester Property?

    Whether you’re keen to invest in student accommodation or looking to invest in city-centre buy-to-let property and appeal to young professionals, Manchester and Liverpool are some of the best cities to do so.

    Want to get involved with an investment in Manchester? Then make sure you take a look at our latest Manchester investment opportunities and contact us so that one of our property experts can advise you on the best route to take.

    For the latest on the 2024 UK property market, take a look at our new investment guides.

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    Dale Barham

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    Dale is a property news and onsite content writer at RWinvest.

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