Manchester has long been famous for its rich history and title as World’s First Industrial City. In recent years it has diversified into a modern metropolis with a thriving cultural and leisure scene, as well as first class employment opportunities.
We asked our Global Accounts Director about his recent trip to Manchester having grown up nearby and seen it reinvent itself into a future-oriented Northern Powerhouse. Take a look at his insights below.
Manchester has always held very fond memories for me, as I grew up in Lancashire and spent many weekends heading to the city to go shopping with my family or to meet up with friends. So, when I visited Manchester whilst on site visits for IP Global, and what must have been 15 years since last being there, I was absolutely stunned by the change and development of what was already a great city. It truly is a fantastic place and what a location to live in and be a part of this vibrant northern cosmopolitan city.
Many people ask where to buy in Manchester, which is of course quite a personal decision as it does depend on what you are looking for. However, when asked the question myself, where would I live in Manchester today, I certainly have some good ideas as to where that would be.
In short, if I were to live in Manchester today, then I would say that it would most likely be just on the outskirts of the city centre such as Salford Quays. This is not only a highly sought-after location but has the buzz and vibrance of a very cool place to live. Right by the water edge of the quays and with MediaCityUK being located here, it has so much to offer.
With over £650 million of investment to date and a further £1 billion of private investment into the area, it has so much scope for incredible growth. Being right in the heart of things and having businesses such as the BBC, ITV Studios and SIS Live being based here, it will always be a draw for the creative and professional investors. It has a plethora of shops, restaurants, bars and gyms that one could spend every weekend exploring new places and still be uncovering new and upcoming locations to visit for years to come.
Now if parents were to ask me where to live in Manchester, then this answer is once again a very personal one but a clear winner for me would be Altringham. What was once a slightly dilapidated part of Manchester, has now become one of the most up-market places to live in the area. Not only has it had a complete rejuvenation of its high street but it also boasts some excellent schools locally and has great access into the city. With lots of top restaurants, bars and shops, this will appeal to most families.
This wonderful city has the second highest absolute number of students, just behind London, so is particularly well catered for this type of market. Students have an abundance of choice when it comes to looking for great locations to live in Manchester. The first that springs to mind for me would be Chorlton-on-Medlock which is just South of the city center and has a huge array of student accommodation options and having great access to the various university campuses along with being in close proximity to the city center and all that it has to offer, it seems like a great choice. Prices are much more affordable than the city center also, which will allow students to get ‘more bang for their buck’, which is quite often a big factor for students to consider.
As an investor, I would have to say that both Salford Quays and Chorlton-on-Medlock would be good options due to the high demand for property there but one that stands above the rest for me is Trafford. The home of Manchester United of course but also is the region’s largest hub of businesses and enterprises with the highest number of companies per capita. There is also a burgeoning bar and food scene, where many young professionals congregate after a day’s work.
The connectivity of Trafford is excellent and with Manchester airport only 10-minutes’ drive away, it will have appeal to the local and international market. Locally, it is well connected through extensive rail networks and light rail tram systems which will soon connect to the High Speed 2 (HS2) rail network.
With strong rental yields on offer and healthy capital appreciation to be had, this would be my choice for investment into the northern powerhouse that is Manchester.
Although, quite a ‘whistle stop’ tour of the city and the area, I was once again so pleased to be back in Manchester, which continues to grow, develop and adapt to the ever-changing world we find ourselves in today. I can’t wait to visit again.
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