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Property In Birmingham Given A Boost Last Year

House prices in Birmingham increased by 5.5 per cent last year, according to figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS). That’s two per cent higher than property in the UK as a whole and more or less in line with the total growth in the West Midlands at 6.1 per cent.

First time buyers in West Midland have more pay left

And yet, despite the increase in property prices, Birmingham is still a city in which the majority of people can afford to live. According to a recent ONS affordability index and the Nationwide Building Society, first-time buyers in the West Midlands spend around 29 per cent of their salary to pay the mortgage. That compares far more favourably with the same group of property buyers in the South East of England, who are forking out 38 per cent of their hard-earned salary each month.

Birmingham property sales for 2018 up on previous year

Good news for sellers in Birmingham in terms of the number of houses sold in the city last year – it was 3.6 per cent higher than in 2017. This is despite the fact that property transactions in England and Wales as a whole fell 1.5 per cent over the year.

Birmingham rental market not ‘letting up’

According to figures produced by upmarket estate agents Frank Knight in their annual report on Birmingham property, average rents have increased by as much as 16 per cent in the city compared to four years earlier. The particular property winners in this sector are two-bedroom flats while, in terms of location, the city centre provides the best rental market for would-be landlords.

Built-to-Rent model making its presence felt in more ways than one

Build-to-Rent is becoming more of a growing presence in the city – at least one third of new supply housing in Birmingham has taken the form of this model (see recent marketing for the new development at The Forum where completion is expected in 2020). Other developments (and developers) worth keeping an eye on will be at the city’s Metrolink extension and the Smithfields regeneration project.

Meanwhile purpose-built rental apartments, in the right location, can only become increasingly popular as time moves on and the housing crisis remains in its current state – or worse. Certainly, if yields are anything to go by Build-to-Rent opportunities are proving far more favourable than traditional buy to let in some quarters. According to the 2018 Knight Frank report, astute investors can look forward to net yields ranging from 4.25 per cent to 4.5 per cent.

Considering Birmingham as your next investment hot spot? We don’t blame you. With more young people than ever before shunning the capital to benefit from less expensive housing here, together with the improved commuting speeds via the HS2 rail link, this city is going from strength to strength. See more and keep up-dated with our news at  www.birminghampropertynews.co.uk

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James Forrester

James Forrester MD of Barrows & Forrester Property Group and Author of The Birmingham Property News Blog.

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