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    Scotland

    Scotland is a country to the north of England and is part of the wider United Kingdom, made up of beautiful countryside, mountains and rugged coastline. Despite having less than 10% of the United Kingdom’s total population, Scotland makes up around 35% of its surface area. The Scots, who are renowned for their easy going and friendly nature, have also played a vital role in many of the world’s most important scientific and technological innovations. Inventors, engineers, and entrepreneurs such as Alexander Graham Bell. James Watt, Andrew Carnegie, and John McAdam  have all played their part in extending Scotland’s reach far beyond the small country’s borders.

    Because of Scotland’s sparsely populated nature, land and property is significantly cheaper than in England. Nevertheless, Scotland has become increasingly attractive for large companies setting up there over the years. In this vein, property prices and rents across Scotland and, in particular,  in its bigger cities are increasing quickly. Scotland has certainly become a hub for property investment and this looks set to continue.

     

    Glasgow view

    Glasgow

    Glasgow is Scotland’s largest city and is renowned for its vibrant and energetic culture and impressive art scene. Home to more than 20 museums and art galleries, Glasgow is visited by millions of art enthusiasts each year. The city’s proximity to Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park make it perfect for those that prefer losing themselves in nature too.

    Glasgow is the most populous city in Scotland and the fifth most populous city in the UK. Statistics show a growing population of 1,259,000 in November 2020. The booming city is situated on the River Clyde in the country’s West Central Lowlands. The banks of the River are aligned with architecture boasting contemporary design including the Riverside Museum, Glasgow Science Centre, the SSE Hydro and the SEC Armadillo. Glasgow has a diverse and rich architectural scene, from Victorian buildings to buildings with glass and metal facades. It also features the most recognisable terraces of blonde and red sandstone. Thus, the fifth most visited city in the UK.

    Although Glasgow is not Scotland’s capital city, it is certainly Scotland’s financial powerhouse. A city with huge amounts of history and even more potential. As one of the UK’s largest city economies, Glasgow has firmly established itself as a truly excellent centre for business and investment. Noted for business friendliness, human capital and lifestyle, and connectivity, Glasgow was named top large European city for FDI Strategy (fDi Intelligence 2020/21). This is not surprising when you consider Glasgow’s wider city region has a young population of 1.8 million, a GVA of £42.9 billion, a huge talent pool from its world-class universities and is extremely affordable compared to most UK cities.

    It is no secret that Glasgow has become an attractive prospect amongst the larger UK cities. Glasgow was recently voted “the friendliest city in the world” in a Rough Guides poll and has the 3rd highest quality of life in the UK. With many parks and more green space per square mile than any other UK city, it is drawing attention from a diverse demographic both in the UK and abroad.

    The city is an attractive place for investors looking to secure their next investment. The innovative city continues to adapt to future-proof the economy. It is undergoing a digital transformation as CityFibre rolls out 300km of full fibre digital infrastructure across the city. This will secure the foundation of Glasgow as it strives to become UK’s digital leader.

    Outside of London, Glasgow has the largest urban rail network. Train services such as Central Station and Queen Street station connect Glasgow to the large part of the West of Scotland and across the UK. Glasgow Central offers services to over 29 million passengers a year. Queen Street Station connects Glasgow to the wider parts of the country and is undergoing a £750 million improvement scheme. The Subway has also been redeveloped with a £300 million investment. Buchanan Bus Station is being upgraded with a half a million-pound revitalisation programme. Glasgow proves to be a well-connected city and the airport is located just 9 miles from the City Centre, providing access to over 150 worldwide destinations.

    Over £16 billion has been invested in infrastructure over the past 2 decades.  Particularly noteworthy is the Glasgow City Region’s city deal. The city deal is investing over £1 billion to fund major infrastructure projects across the region. The deal will support the local area in achieving its long-term vision through:

    • Improved infrastructure – £1.13 billion fund to support the delivery of an improved transport network across Glasgow and the Clyde Valley, key development and regeneration sites and improved public transport.
    • Growth in life sciences – establishment of world class research and development and commercialisation facilities.
    • Supporting business innovation – providing additional business incubator and grow-on space for entrepreneurs across the region enabling more small and medium enterprises to grow.
    • Tackling unemployment – creation of thousands of new jobs and establishment of programmes to provide targeted support to 16-24 year olds and vulnerable residents, and testing new ways of boosting the incomes of people on low wages to make them more self-reliant.

    If there was one sector that epitomises the rise in Glasgow’s fortunes it would be its property market. A city with very affordable property prices but a fantastic rental market due to the number of people moving to the city, the Glasgow buy to let scene is booming in every sense of the word. In fact, of the top 25 postcodes delivering the highest returns of investment on buy to lets, five are in Glasgow. The best of these postcodes is G52. This postcode covers areas such as Hillington, Cardonald, Penilee and Mosspark. Landlords buying here can expect a yield return of nearly 9%.

    Furthermore, since the Coronavirus pandemic arrived in the UK Glasgow has being selling properties quicker than anywhere else in the UK. This is due to the attractiveness of living here as an alternative to more expensive UK cities. With the increased level of working from home arrangements, Glasgow is expected to prosper as a city young people choose to settle in. Now might just be the time to consider Glasgow as a place to invest whilst the price of property is still considerably low.

     

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