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    How Does Football Affect the UK Economy?

    According to the Premier League Economic & Social Impact Report in January 2022, Premier League football contributed £7.6 billion to the UK economy. Additionally, the UK’s top 20 football clubs contributed £3.6 billion in tax, this represents a growth of 840% since 1998. In addition, 72% of the league’s economic impact has occurred outside of London, with clubs in the Midlands and the North of England seeing huge success in recent years.

    Whilst directly responsible for high levels of economic growth, football can aid the growth of local businesses. This can range from public houses to newspapers, all enjoying the benefits of their local club. Furthermore, international tourism has a large increase in usage during matchday weekends. The economic growth and increased spending in the area will have a ripple effect on the local property market.

    • £7.6bn

      Value added to UK economy
    • £3.6bn

      Tax contribution in 2020
    • 840%

      Growth in economic contribution since 1998

    How Much is Invested in the Community?

    Football clubs offer a lot of value to their local communities, building relationships and community spirit. Furthermore, financially Premier League clubs have invested £455 million into their respective local communities. The investment has been used in collaboration with the local councils to rejuvenate areas and add new public facilities. Football clubs often do this to improve local infrastructure, build a safer community around the club, and increase public and political support.

    The improvements have been apparent in areas such as Liverpool where the football club launched the Anfield Project regeneration. The club funded this scheme, by enhancing the immediate area around the football club. This included building new properties, refurbishing existing properties and introducing a new public square. This had a positive impact on the property market in suburban areas of Liverpool. House prices in and around Anfield have risen by an impressive 9.6% according to Rightmove, as a result of the regeneration.

    Better Employment Rates, Better Quality Tenants

    Premier League football is a business, just like any other. Between 20 Premier League clubs and its governing bodies, top-level football supports around 94,000 jobs. This ranges from high-level executives and media teams to shop assistants. Therefore, helping raise local employment significantly. Similarly, each of the 20 clubs employs an average of 4,700 people. However, in addition to direct job creation, football clubs create external jobs for journalists, shopkeepers, market vendors and many more who indirectly benefit from football.

    Whilst this covers the effects of the 20 Premier League clubs, there are a total of 92 professional football clubs in England. Therefore, employment in local areas is much higher nationwide. An example of this is Salford City FC, which is ranked 75th in the English football pyramid and employs around 100 professionals.  The rise in employment creates a large demand for housing in towns and cities with professional football clubs. The elevated levels of rental and housing demand, boost competition in the area. Therefore, increasing house prices and rents in the area.

    Tourism Heightens Demand for Short-term Lets

    Premier League football is responsible for 528,000 international tourists per annum, with an estimated total spend of £442 million. Furthermore, football attracts 612,000 domestic tourists with a total spend of £16 million. This is hugely beneficial to local businesses, transport, and properties running on the serviced accommodation model. During sporting events, serviced accommodation is in high demand, causing prices to rise. This means investors can benefit from incredible returns on matchday weekends. There are even cases reported where investors have been able to achieve over double the rental cost as a result of matchday weekends.

    In areas such as Trafford in Greater Manchester, home to Manchester United Football Club, such high levels of international tourism would otherwise be unachievable. The positive impact on local vendors means the football club is indirectly able to support the local economy. This area has been able to invest £260 million into the local infrastructure and regenerate the area as a result of the increased footfall. As a result, house prices in Trafford have increased from £320,000 to £345,000 year on year according to the National Office of Statistics.

    • 528,000

      International Tourists
    • £442 million

      Spent by International Tourism
    • 612,000

      Domestic Tourists
    • £16 million

      Spent by Domestic Tourists

    How Does This Affect House Prices?

    The economic and social impact of football has a direct effect on house prices. High levels of employment increase the demand for quality housing, in towns such as Burnley. A business the size of Burnley Football Club means that demand from skilled professionals is high, therefore, house prices are rising as it creates a supply-demand imbalance. Additionally, regeneration in areas such as Anfield in Liverpool has attracted more homeowners, drawing high numbers of residents out of the city centre.

    Some areas directly benefit from being situated close to football stadiums. Average property prices in the postal district of Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium have risen from £59,500 in 1997 to £450,000 in 2017. This is due to the development of the area to accommodate the new football stadium. However, this is not always the case, as in some areas house prices can be negatively influenced due to poor infrastructure, causing congestion, excessive noise, and lack of parking.

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