Liverpool, A city on the UP!

Published on 14th June, 2016

As investment into property in Liverpool is set to rocket over the next few years, Sanjit Dhanjal managing director of Opulent looks at some of the key reasons behind why Liverpool is attracting so much investment of late!

Within recent months there has been much speculation over two key areas in the North of England. Manchester and Liverpool. The purpose of this article is to drill down on exactly why one of the two Liverpool, is attracting the levels of foreign investment at the moment and what exactly this means for property prices in the City.

Up until the mid 1980’s there no mistaking that Liverpool was hard hit by the recession. Having previously been a city immersed within the manufacturing sector, unemployment rose heavily in the mid 80’s peaking at some 25%. Manufacturing was the sector that was hardest hit by the recession and subsequently many of the workers in this sector lost their jobs. There was a clear lack of skills within the Liverpool labour market and inevitably the city slipped in to decline with economic growth falling considerably.

Fast forward 20 years and the city has been rejuvenated with unemployment now down to the lowest it has been since the mid 80’s and economic growth that is second to none as far as the UK goes. In fact, outside of London, Liverpool now has the largest economy in the UK worth some £166bn and is now home to no fewer than 266,000 companies. Such has been the rise in number of business’s in Liverpool that it was recently ranked first in the UK for both entrepreneurship and business growth. The city has a new lease of life and following a huge swath of regeneration in the past decade the city is now revelling in its position as being one of the most vibrant and financially sound cities in the North West of England.

Given the recent growth and rise of this once European City of Culture, we thought it would be a good idea to drill down on exactly why the rise of Liverpool has been so strong of late and why thousands of property investors are flocking to Liverpool for their next investment:

  1. Regeneration – There is no doubt that Liverpool invested heavily in to several regeneration projects that have fuelled the economic growth of the city. In fact, in the past 15 years Liverpool has seen more economic restructuring and urban change than any other city in the UK. The redevelopment of the docks area, the city centre regeneration as well as the new Chinatown regeneration are just a few examples of this. In fact, in total over the past decade Liverpool has invested over £5bn in to regeneration schemes and the plan is not to stop there. Over the course of the next 10 years the city has identified regeneration projects totalling some £7.2bn including the much talked about Liverpool Waters project that will see some 9000 residential apartments, a number of skyscraper offices and a plethora of bars and restaurants created in an investment set to total some £5.5bn by the time it’s complete. There’s also the new University hospital which is being built, a hospital that is set to be the largest hospital in Europe as well a new multimillion project scheduled for the Liverpool port area.
  2. Fertile ground for Business’s – There are now over 266,000 VAT registered businesses in Liverpool and this figure is growing. What once seemed like ambitious plans from the mayor of Liverpool to create 20,000 new jobs by 2017 now is beginning to look like a reality. So why are more and more business choosing to setup in Liverpool? Well primarily it’s because labour in this part of the world doesn’t cost much and is much cheaper than some of the Southern based cities especially London, but perhaps more significantly has been the support provided by Liverpool Council to business’s through what has been termed the Merseyside Business Support Programme, a programme that offers free and funded advice to thousands of companies around key areas such as sales and marketing and finance. As the knowledge based economy in Liverpool continues to gather momentum there is no doubt that more and more businesses will continue to be created in Liverpool further adding to the economic appeal of this city..
  3. Population Growth – As a result of all the regeneration, economic growth and job creation, Liverpool is now ranked one of the best cities to live for young professionals. The population of Liverpool is growing and now stands at circa 1.4m people an increase on 0.8% year on year. The biggest driver of population growth in Liverpool has been international migration with some 259,695 people relocating to Liverpool in search of a better life. The upward trend in population is yet another reason why property prices in Liverpool are growing and are expected to continue to do so for the upcoming few years.
  4. Rising number of Students - More and more students who study in Liverpool are choosing to stay on in the city in search of thriving careers. With over 66,000 students across five universities this figure is only expected to increase in future years and is allowing Liverpool to move away from the traditional unskilled workforces from yesteryear to a new skilled labour market.
  5. Government Funding – Whereas in previous years the main benefactor of government funding and support in the UK was London, in recent years the government have harboured interests to change this giving rise to the so called “Northern Powerhouse”. The governments ambitions to create a more balanced economy by investing significantly in to both Liverpool and Manchester. There is no doubt that in years to come through both local and national government funding Liverpool will continue to attract more business, continue to attract more students and continue to attract more foreign investors.

So as you can see from the above the story is quite compelling. More and more Opulent investors are choosing to invest in Liverpool and according to all of the above they would be right to do so. Opulent currently has a number of opportunities in Liverpool, give us a call now to learn more!

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