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Are Londoners Moving Away From The Capital And Relocating To The North? If So, Why?

England’s capital is one of the most popular cities in Europe; so many people from all over Europe wish they could live there one day. Recent data shows that many Londoners and people residing in the capital are continually opting to relocate up North.

Many people are wondering why these people are moving from the South to the North and the impact of this movement on the London property investment market. This post studies this trend and answers what has become a common question among Londoners and investors: “should I move out of London now?

The Numbers: The Number Of People Moving Out Of London

How many individuals are relocating from London? According to the Office for National Statistics data, 340,500 people relocated from London in the previous year ending June 2018. Since 2012, this has been the greatest number of people that have left London.

Such statistics indicate that London is the only city in the region where the number of people exiting the area is higher than those arriving. Rather than recording arrivals from other cities in Britain, London is currently depending on individuals coming from overseas to sustain a stable population.

The People Moving Out Of London

Since we have looked at the number of people leaving London, it helps to note the demographic character of the people who are moving out of London to live in other places.

From the population moving out of London, many of these people are young professionals. According to the latest statistics, most parts of London have witnessed a significant reduction in the population aged between 18 and 34 that has lived in a certain area for more than seven years. The areas of Fulham and Hammersmith have recorded the greatest decline of 5.39%.

On the other hand, Manchester is an example of an area to the North that has recorded an increase in the number of young individuals moving there. For instance, between 2002 and 2017, the population of this young lot in Manchester increased by 43,875 people. In 2016 alone, 4,150 individuals were recorded to have relocated from London to Manchester, most of whom were young professionals searching for new opportunities in the North.

The other section of individuals moving away from London are young families who want to begin a new phase of life together with their families in a different location in the UK. While young professionals prefer to relocate to lively areas like Liverpool and Manchester to continue their city lifestyle, these young families tend to move to rural and serene settings all over England, not just the North. For example, over half of the young families relocated to Broxbourne and Hertsmere in Hertfordshire came from London.

The Pull Factors In The North

But why do many people think it is time to move from London to the North? The North has greater appeal for individuals looking for a change in their typical London lifestyle in the South part of England. Below are some of the most frequent reasons that attract people to relocate to the Northern cities of the UK.

-Better career prospects

-Affordable cost of living

-Higher quality of life

Indeed, living in London is expensive. For instance, you will pay more to buy or rent a house, use public transport, and buy a few necessities. Generally, the cost of living in London is beyond the reach of many people. Specifically, young professionals are likely to find the cost of living in London quite unbearable, compelling many to relocate to the North.

Life in the North of the UK is considerably cheaper for many people than life in London and other cities in the South. For instance, there is a considerable difference in property prices between London and Liverpool. According to Zoopla’s data, the average asking price in Liverpool is about £171,696, while in London, the average asking price is about £999,360, which is nearly £1 million.

Besides the cost of buying property, the difference in the average rental rates between London and Liverpool is also substantial. To illustrate using Zoopla’s data, in London, the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment is £1,918 PCM, while in Liverpool, the same housing unit comes at an average rental cost of £548 PCM – a difference of more than half.

The difference in rental rates is driving most young professionals who want to avoid paying more to finally relocate to the Northern cities, e.g. Liverpool, to save some money. In addition, most prospective homebuyers will find it easy saving and buy a property in Liverpool than in London.

The Impact Of People Moving To The North On The UK Real Estate Market

Suppose you are an investor considering purchasing a buy-to-let property in London or other parts of the UK. This migration trend indicates that property markets in areas to the North of the UK, like Liverpool and Manchester, have greater potential.

Indeed, the Manchester city centre and its neighbouring areas have recorded increased developed properties. For instance, from Manchester, Salford, and Salford Quays, a total of 15,000 new housing projects are currently being constructed. In addition, Liverpool has several large regeneration projects in the pipeline, such as the Liverpool Waters Scheme, which the citizens eagerly await. Simply put, there is a lot of potentials to be exploited in this flourishing location.

As more and more people continually seek a city-centre lifestyle, the population in the city centre has increased by 700% in the last century. You can expect rental properties in the North West to have lower vacancy rates and better rental returns as more young professionals seek affordable rental space. On the other hand, rental investment properties in London may be staring at a bleak future characterised by low rental yields and high vacancy rates. If you want to relocate to the North consider cash house buyers for a hassle free fast sale.


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