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Demand for Purpose Built Student Accommodation to Rise

Demand for purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) in the UK, like One Islington – the latest student accommodation project in our portfolio – is set to rise. Find out more about One Islington from us.

Savills reported a 17%  increase in student accommodation investment in the UK this year, and expects investments in the sector  to reach £5.3bn by the end of the year, surpassing the £4.5bn spent in 2016. Meanwhile, Knight Frank’s UK Student Housing Rental Update reports that headline rental growth for the sector increased by 2.55% for the 2017/18 academic year.

Demand for Purpose-built Student Accommodation (PBSA) or UK Student Property is expected to rise as students continue to flock to the UK to study. Unlike residential property, this sector is seen to be a rock-solid investment in the face of global and domestic challenges.

Savills reported a 17%  increase in student accommodation investment in the UK this year, and expects investments in the sector  to reach £5.3bn by the end of the year, surpassing the £4.5bn spent in 2016. Meanwhile, Knight Frank’s UK Student Housing Rental Update reports that headline rental growth for the sector increased by 2.55% for the 2017/18 academic year.

While some of the younger UK population prefer to seek apprenticeships instead of applying for university, the latest analysis by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) shows that demand for higher education among 18-year-olds remains strong. In addition, the Government’s removal of the student cap will continue to see an increasing number of international students applying to study in Britain. In the 2017/18 academic year, non-EU applications had risen by 2.2% even while EU applications had fallen ostensibly due to Brexit.

The provision of good quality student accommodation was traditionally the responsibility of universities, but in recent years, most new accommodation has been provided by private investors and developers.

International students can be very profitable for landlords and letting agents, as many are prepared to pay higher rents for superior quality accommodation.

David Feeney, Head of Student Analytics at Cushman & Wakefield said: “More students than ever are demanding a bed in purpose-built accommodation. This, coupled with pressure on local housing markets, means that demand for purpose-built accommodation should remain strong. However, micro-market knowledge is essential to investment success.”

Mike Mitchell, Partner in Cushman & Wakefield’s Student and Residential Investment team, commented: “Across the UK, the PBSA market continues to be one of the most attractive asset classes in real estate for investors. Despite applications to Universities falling by 3.7%, the sector has witnessed year-on-year rental growth. Due to the value of foreign currencies against the Pound, there has been an influx of capital from overseas buyers in 2017 who are now competing with UK purchasers.”

The UK overtook the US as the largest student property market for the first time in 2015 after reaching a record £6.56bn in investment volumes.

Article by Ian Choong


CSI Prop proudly promotes international investment property with high yields at low risk. Our portfolio comprises residential and purpose-built student property in cities across the United Kingdom (London, Luton, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, York, Glasgow, Scotland; Sheffield, etc); Australia (Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane) and Thailand (Bangkok). Our projects are concentrated in high-growth areas with great educational, infrastructural and job growth potentials. We aspire to make a difference in the lives of our clients by helping them achieve their investment goals through strong market research backed by third party experts and due diligence. 

Disclaimer: CSI Prop does not provide tax & legal advice and accepts no liability. Readers are encouraged to consult a qualified tax or legal advisor for a thorough review.

Need advice or clarification? Call us for more information and/or to find out about our projects! Hotline: 03-2162 2260

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Most Resilient Asset Class in the UK Property Market

The UK property market has been mentioned in the news quite a fair bit. One of the issues that has consistently been bandied about is the UK property market and how it will augur in the face of the political upheaval that the country is going through, namely Brexit and the UK snap elections.

Over the years, what’s clear is that the UK property market — which suffered at the global financial downturn — has become a tougher nut to crack. UK’s property market has remained resolute, with prices continuing to climb skyward.

Underpinning this spiraling price hike is the critical undersupply of housing — a condition that is not just prevalent within the residential real estate sector, but also the student accommodation sector.

One of the students we interviewed who is currently a VITA Student resident in Liverpool. Student property is currently the top investment asset within the UK property market.

Student property is now one of the most — if not the most — resilient asset class in the UK property market. Over the years, more investments have been made into this sector, making it a popular investment among astute investors. Institutional investors like Temasek & GIC have invested heavily into this sector. Watch this video  above to know why student property is now the UK’s Most Resilient Asset Class in the UK property market.


CSI Prop proudly promotes international investment property with high yields at low risk. Our portfolio comprises residential and purpose-built student property in cities across the United Kingdom (London, Luton, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, York, Glasgow, Scotland; Sheffield, etc); Australia (Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane) and Thailand (Bangkok). Our projects are concentrated in high-growth areas with great educational, infrastructural and job growth potentials. We aspire to make a difference in the lives of our clients by helping them achieve their investment goals through strong market research backed by third party experts and due diligence. 

Disclaimer: CSI Prop does not provide tax & legal advice and accepts no liability. Readers are encouraged to consult a qualified tax or legal advisor for a thorough review.

Need advice or clarification? Call us for more information and/or to find out about our projects! Hotline: 03-2162 2260

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Emerging Trends 80 Days After Brexit

Some 80 days have passed. What are the trends that have emerged in the property scene? Image credit: http://bit.ly/2cumEgw

It has been 2. 5 months since Brexit. By the end of Sept, the government will start to think steps to invoke Article 50, the ‘divorce process’ that will trigger the UK’s departure from the EU. The property market was among the sectors hit hardest by the referendum, with seven commercial property funds freezing trading within weeks, Reuters reports. However, some trends have emerged that allow for a better observation of the property sector, namely:

  • UK property market players and investors are still confident about the future prospects of the market. Regional cities like Manchester & Liverpool continue to outperform London
  • Alternative/specialist property like UK student property/purpose built student accommodation (PBSA) and hotels gained greater traction among investors due to its long leases and liquid returns
  • Private rental sector remains significant as housing supply unable to keep up with demand

 

  1. Future prospects of the market looks good. Regional cities like Manchester & Liverpool outperform London

Indeed, the first post-Brexit updates from property companies indicated greater caution. However, property auctioneers Network Auctions said that in the months since Brexit, little has changed in terms of investor confidence. There has emerged conditions favourable to investors such as the low inflation and low interest rate. Overseas investors are also taking advantage of the low pound.

New data shows that the UK’s housing market, despite having slowed down, is showing signs of healthy activity and resilience.

Using data representative of 90% of properties in the UK’s market, it was observed that the total number of properties had risen on 8th August compared to 22nd June with 866,179 properties were for sale across the UK before the vote.  Readings on 8th August shows this number increased by 1.7% on the market, but with less properties under offer (decrease of 4.3%) versus pre-Brexit.

The average asking price for a UK property also rose by £1,040 from £240,470 on 25th July to £241,510 in August while the average asking price for all properties for sale on the market had increased by 3% to an average value of £247,026 in the same period.

The latest Hometrack UK Cities House Price Index reveals that amid the annual rate of house price inflation slowing down by 9.5% in July after 12 months of higher growth across 20 cities in the UK, this is not the case in the large regional cities in the north of England and Scotland. The rate of annual house price growth in the Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds, Birmingham and Nottingham continues to rise by 7% – 8%.

 

  1. Increased interest in alternative/specialist property sectors e.g. UK student property (PBSA)

Reuters reports that property investors are are now favouring alternative property such as student property (PBSA), hotels and hospitals. Alternatives accounted for 16% of the total UK property investment in July — an increase from 13% in Q2.

Office and retail total returns fell 3.7% and 3.2% respectively in July while returns from alternative assets were down by only 1.4% in recent months, said CBRE Group Inc. Additionally, CBRE also observed rental growth for alternative assets while traditional property assets saw none.

Alternatives have gained traction due to their long leases and steady tenants, and tend to be less risky and more defensive, compared to traditional commercial property like office and retail spaces.

The PBSA sector demonstrated its comparative resilience during the global financial crisis, showcasing its strong fundamentals. Earlier this month, the A-levels results announcement showed some 424,000 students receive confirmed places in their respective universities, with the number of EU students increasing by 11% to 26,800 despite fears. Note: the UK is not dependent on EU students who represent only around 6% of full-time students.

The sector will continue to remain resilient, with demand for well-located student housing schemes remaining strong,  as structural undersupply underpins rental growth (JLL UK Student Housing Quarterly Bulletin 2016 Q2 Review).

 

iii. Private rental sector significant as housing supply unable to keep up with demand

The proportion of private tenants rose from 11% in 2003 to 19% last year. In Greater Manchester, it rose from 6% to 20% over the same period.

Much has contributed to the private rental sector, such as the relative unaffordability of house prices which corresponds with an acute shortage in housing supply and social housing. The fall in home ownership, according to data from non-profit organisation Resolution Foundation, is at a 30-year low, and corresponded with the rise in renting from private landlords.

Following the Brexit vote, the rental market remains steady as rents, supply and tenant demand did not significantly change in July. The latest monthly report released by the Association of Residential Letting Agents (ARLA) found that whilst just 12% of agents reported a dip in rent, a staggering three quarters (77%) saw no change in rental costs.

In a similar fashion, the supply of properties and demand for housing remained unchanged immediately after the vote as two-thirds (67%) of ARLA members reported no change in supply, and a further 64% reported no change in the number of prospective tenants looking for properties.

However, a shadow of ambiguity still hangs over the rental market as nearly half (45%) of letting agents witnessed uncertainty from landlords looking to let properties. Fewer entrants to the rental market could put further pressure on rents, as supply falls short of the substantial demand from tenants.

Looking forward, with the current lack of housing to buy, it does appear that the rental sector is going to remain significant for a while.

CSI Prop proudly promotes international investment property with high yields at low risk. Our portfolio comprises residential and purpose-built student property in cities across the United Kingdom (London, Luton, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, York, Glasgow, Scotland; Sheffield, etc); Australia (Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane) and Thailand (Bangkok). Our projects are concentrated in high-growth areas with great educational, infrastructural and job growth potentials. We aspire to make a difference in the lives of our clients by helping them achieve their investment goals through strong market research backed by third party experts and due diligence. 

Disclaimer: CSI Prop does not provide tax & legal advice and accepts no liability. Readers are encouraged to consult a qualified tax or legal advisor for a thorough review.

Need advice or clarification? Call us for more information and/or to find out about our projects! Hotline: 03-2162 2260

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Student Property: Where in the UK?

Lifestyle: While centrally located digs matter to university students,  facilities like quality living space, high-speed bandwidth and communal sections that encourage optimum interaction are now highly ranked, too.

Where in the UK to invest?

If there’s one thing that has UK Inc. stamped all over, it’s Britain’s world-class education. Yep, British universities are in rip-roaring health as eager beavers continue to cram the hallowed halls of renowned UK institutions, while other industries suffer.

Knight Frank and Savills have both reported that student property now stands as the fastest-growing property sector in the UK, with demand consistently exceeding supply. Indeed. There are some 2.3 million students (and counting) in the UK now, and the number of international students is predicted to rise by 20% – 30% in the next 5 years according to the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills in 2013. These are amazing times for investment!

It is, however, crucial to invest wisely.

Putting your money in any old property located within minutes from a city area, isn’t the way to go. You won’t get great returns investing in student digs in townships where unknown universities are located. Conversely, it is cities like Birmingham, Bristol, Exeter, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield that have been touted as the best places to invest in UK student property. One common thread shared between these cities is that they each serve as the location for a Russell Group University. As a rule, universities that rise rapidly in the UK league tables attract higher enrolment, thus creating greater demand for accommodation. Ergo, the more renowned the university, the stronger the rental market.

Cambridge university students, for instance, are brainy and make formidable cash cows. The university is constantly expanding; the city population is expected to increase by more than 20 per cent in the next 10 years, driving the student rental sector in the area to boom. Newcastle is another example. The Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) has ranked Newcastle University (another Russell Group Uni) as5th in employability, top 12 for research power in science and engineering and 8th for medical research power. It is also one of the largest universities in the whole of UK with more than 31,000 students from 130 countries.

It is also prudent to invest in student accommodation built by credible developers that have vast experience in the business.  At the risk of being repetitive, we prefer developers that build where top universities are located, and with enough monetary clout to develop on a site that’s mere minutes’ walk away from universities, city centres and amenities – i.e. where demand is highest.

Purpose Built Student Accommodation

Which is why Purpose Built Student Accommodation (PBSA) has been increasing in popularity.As global, regional and virtual boundaries continue to blur, students want to remain connected. In this hurry-up world, they want to have anything and be anywhere, instantly. Research shows that students have become more discerning, and want to be treated like true customers. Thus, while prime locations matter, facilities like quality living space, high-speed bandwidth and communal sections that encourage optimum interaction are now highly ranked, too.

This bodes well for the mass investor market. PBSAs – formerly the domain of institutional investors – is now the focus of the smart individual investor because, with the right developer, the rewards are enormous. VITA Student, the luxury student accommodation development arm of UK’s renowned Select Property Group, has had 10 years’ experience in the market, with their projects fetching annual rental yields of up to 10% and guaranteed returns of minimum 7% for five years.

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CSI Prop proudly promotes international investment property with high yields at low risk. Our portfolio comprises residential and purpose-built student property in cities across the United Kingdom (London, Luton, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle, York, Glasgow, Scotland; Sheffield, etc); Australia (Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane) and Thailand (Bangkok). Our projects are concentrated in high-growth areas with great educational, infrastructural and job growth potentials. We aspire to make a difference in the lives of our clients by helping them achieve their investment goals through strong market research backed by third party experts and due diligence. 

Disclaimer: CSI Prop does not provide tax & legal advice and accepts no liability. Readers are encouraged to consult a qualified tax or legal advisor for a thorough review.

Need advice or clarification? Call us for more information and/or to find out about our projects! Hotline: 03-2162 2260