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Buyers and renters are choosing the North over London for more affordable living. Therefore, investors are targeting areas outside of London for stronger capital growth and higher rental yields. Particularly London’s biggest rival.
Manchester is one of the most exciting buy-to-let ares of the UK. This alone makes Manchester an investment hotpot, and quite the rival for London. There is even forecast to be a further 20,000 people relocating in the next three years.
With this in the pipeline, rental demand is only due to increase. In just 20 years, Manchester alone saw an impressive 330% rise in property prices, with a leap to £250,000 from £200,000 back in 2017. As for the average rent in Manchester, the city has seen a 14% rise from last year, becoming the third city in the UK with the largest increase in asking rents. This is only expected to rise, with a 23.5% property price growth and an 18.2% rent growth in Manchester between 2022 and 2025.
Due to Manchester’s ever-growing popularity and, consequentially, the rising cost of living, more buyers and renters will continue to migrate to the outskirts of the city centre and into commuter towns and suburbs of Greater Manchester and beyond.
15-minute train to the city centre
Just five miles northeast of the city centre is one iconic industrial town in Greater Manchester.
Middleton is one of the favourite areas in Manchester for first-time buyers. Everything a resident could need, from shopping to green spaces, is all within reach and offers just a short 15-minute train journey to Manchester City Centre.
Connections from Middleton to Manchester do not stop there. Manchester City Centre is accessible by either the A664 or the M60, the Manchester ring road, in less than a 25-minute drive.
Middleton’s popularity is due to its excellent commutable location and all the amenities on offer. A traditional high street, alongside its own outdoor market and spacious indoor shopping centre, is on par with Manchester City Centre shopping. As for green spaces, this industrial town is within reach of Middleton Park, Alkrington Woods, Tandle Hill, and even a nature reserve and sculpture park – all while so close to the heart of Manchester.
Population only saw a growth of just 370 people in the decade between 2002 and 2011. However, the population has rocketed by 3,372 due to Manchester’s and Middleton’s increasing desirability.
43,248Middleton population (2011)
46,620Middleton population (2021)
0.67%Middleton YoY growth rate
10-minute train to the city centre
Ashton-under-Lyne is one of the best places to live in Manchester, perfect for commuting. This historic market town is growing in popularity by being one of the many areas in Greater Manchester with ongoing regeneration projects.
Due to Ashton’s more affordable property prices than most Manchester suburbs and great location, the population has seen a spike in recent years. As a hub of connectivity and an easily accessible location, Ashton is one of the best areas to live in Manchester for young professionals with rental demand being so high.
Ashton-under-Lyne has its own tram station, with a 45-minute Metro link every 12 minutes, direct to Manchester. A train station, many bus routes, and a 30-minute drive are also on offer when commuting from Manchester to Ashton.
From the famed Ashton Market to its proximity to the Peak District, there are plenty of things to do in Ashton-under-Lyne. It is one of the best areas in Manchester for first-time buyers.
45,198Ashton-under-Lyne population (2011)
48,604Ashton-under-Lyne population (2021)
0.73%Ashton-under-Lyne YoY growth rate
30 minutes from the city centre
Bury is one of the many historic market towns in Greater Manchester, just 10 miles north of the city centre. An abundance of green spaces and country parks, the Lancashire countryside, and the Pennines are on Bury’s doorstep.
Residents have the choice of Manchester city centre shopping, the Bury town centre, and surrounding villages near Manchester for all necessities. With the likes of schools, eateries, shops, and bars all in close range, Bury is proving to be a hotspot for young professionals and families alike.
As well as its award-winning attractions and hidden gems, Bury offers great transport into Manchester City Centre. There is a choice of two possible 30-minute direct trains from Bury to Manchester Victoria every six minutes. Or, if preferring to drive, the city centre is just 30 minutes away, with both Bolton and Rochdale within a mere 20 minutes.
Due to its commutable location and wide range of amenities, Bury is one of the best areas to live in Manchester for young professionals.
Less than 45 minutes’ drive to the city centre
An industrial town in Greater Manchester, Wigan is one of the few areas in Manchester to have 70% of it dedicated to green spaces. For a town with a rich history in coal mining, to also have two canals and two woodland parks is nothing short of idyllic.
Areas in Wigan consist of large industrial spaces, suburban neighbourhoods, and small rural communities. Not one but two train stations are on offer for Wigan to Manchester commutes. The Wigan to Manchester train takes up to 45 minutes, which is the same time for driving, too. Commuting by tram is also on offer, with a 50-minute journey to Deansgate and connections farther into the city.
With multiple trains from Wigan to Manchester, its mix of neighbourhoods, and a plethora of green spaces, Wigan is one of the best places to live in Manchester for both families and young professionals.
15-minute drive to the city centre
Whalley Range is one of the many leafy Manchester suburbs, just two miles south of Manchester City Centre. This suburb is close enough to Manchester City Centre that a train is not necessary. Driving only takes 15 minutes and 28 minutes by bus.
Offering more affordable prices than Chorlton, Whalley Range is a favoured area for renters and first-time buyers. With its idyllic scenes of wide tree-lined streets and heritage buildings, Whalley Range is particularly picturesque, voted as one of the top five Manchester postcodes to live in.
Favoured by renters and first-time buyers and situated close to the student areas of Rusholme and Fallowfield, Whalley Range is one of the best areas in Manchester to invest in.
15,454Whalley Range population (2011)
16,557Whalley Range population (2021)
0.69%Whalley Range YoY growth rate
10-minute direct train to the city centre
Stockport has seen a wealth of independent restaurants, bars, shops, and art increase in the last few years. With a growing reputation as a growing food and drink scene, it is proving a hotspot for young professionals.
Three possible train lines are on offer for commuting from Stockport to Manchester, which take as little as 10 minutes. If driving, commuters can expect a 35-minute journey instead.
Proudly named as ‘one of the coolest little corners of the country’, Stockport has seen an increase in popularity. The town’s old architecture and cobbled streets only increase its appeal. With a plethora of independent amenities and country parks, Stockport is proving to be one of the best places to live in Manchester.
Intrigued by what Manchester has to offer?
From its history and capital growth to regeneration projects and forecasts on the property market, the CityRise City Guide for Manchester to help in your investment.
Click here to download the CityRise City Guide.
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