Luton has become one of the U.K.’s more prominent property hotspots over the last few years. If we look back to 2016, Luton boasted the UK’s best performing property market, registering an increase of 19.4%. It is not very often that a large town such as Luton is recognised as both a high rental region and one with potential for significant capital growth. So, what does Luton have to offer and why are so many investors being drawn to the town?
Where do we start with the Luton transport network? Do we focus on the £110 million redevelopment of Luton airport? Should we concentrate on the rail network with a 23 minute journey time to King’s Cross /St Pancras station or 90 minutes to Gatwick airport? The nearby M1 motorway provides a direct drive into London in less than 30 minutes and access to the likes of Brighton, Leicester, Leeds and Sheffield. To say that the Luton transport network is advanced is an understatement; there are major roads, rail and airport links to any area of the UK. That is before we even begin to look at the international transport network!
It is fair to say that the local council has been backing growth in the Luton economy with an ongoing £1.5 billion investment announced in 2015. This significant inward investment will create in excess of 18,000 new jobs and a 395 acre enterprise zone with the intention of attracting multinational firms across an array of different business sectors. The airport is central to the Luton economy offering access to both domestic and international business destinations. With over 14.6 million passengers using the airport in 2016, this figure is expected to exceed 18 million passengers as a consequence of the recent investment.
This type of booming economy is also very useful when looking to attract new graduates who have much to offer the business world.
Many of the booming property markets of the UK tend to have a very strong student population which creates various options with regards to buy to let investment. We have seen tens of millions of pounds invested in Luton’s University education system in recent years. It is safe to say this investment is coming to fruition with growing demand from students for university places as well as accommodation. The growing student population has prompted increased investment in local businesses thereby increasing economic output.
As in large cities such as Birmingham, more and more students graduating from Luton University are now seeking local employment opportunities. This strong pull for graduates is placing pressure on the Luton private rental market and attracting further investment. Many experts believe this trend will grow stronger in the short to medium term much to the benefit of the local economy.
Luton housing market
As we touched on above, the Luton housing market has been one of the better performers in the UK in recent years. The mix of attractive rental yields, together with potential for long-term capital growth, has not gone unnoticed. The buy to let sector is currently very much in demand with an array of luxury housing developments in Luton (ranging from one to 3 bedrooms) nearing completion. We have seen a number of investors cashing in their London property market chips and looking further afield to areas such as Luton. Now recognised as a major property market for those commuting to the capital the recent and ongoing investment in the travel network is certainly paying dividends.
The road network, rail system and nearby airport facilities have placed Luton in a very strong position with regards to property investors. Luton is not only one of the primary commuting areas for London but it also has a growing student population. The fact that many students are deciding to begin their working life in Luton, which has a booming economy, is great for the buy to let market. As you might have guessed, growing demand for private rental properties continues to draw in buy to let investors and property developers to Luton. It is not difficult to see why….