What’s driving the Slough property boom?
The Slough property market is currently experiencing unprecedented change, with the Crossrail connection opening in 2019 and the Heart of Slough regeneration programme now underway it is having a positive effect on both the rental and sales markets.
Renters are moving out of London at the highest rate since 2007, pushing up rents across the south of England, according to research by Countrywide. Unlike a decade ago, the vast majority of those leaving the Capital are continuing to rent rather than buy, due to crunched affordability.
In 2007, 51 per cent of renters left London to buy and now that proportion is just 21 per cent. London rents have risen more than any other UK city since 2012, which means tenants are now offered significantly more living space for less cost outside of the Capital, and this is proving a big incentive to leave.
Whilst some London renters are moving North, many still want to be close to work in Central London and, as such, are looking to towns along the London Commuter Belt, with Slough reportedly proving the most popular; 46 per cent of homes in Slough are let to tenants who have moved there from the Capital.
This is all reflected in rental rate rises across the country. The average rent across the UK rose 1.1 per cent in the last 12 months, driven by growth in the South of the country; in the South West, rents rose by 3.3 per cent in the year to September, while in London they were flat.
We’re also seeing an effect on the demand for new housing in general. With a growing number of homes being occupied by renters this is putting a real stretch on housing availability as families and homebuyers are still very active in the area. This increased demand coupled with a relatively low supply is inflating the price of property, even moreso in areas, like Slough, within a one-mile radius of Crossrail, where values have reportedly risen by 66% since 2009.
With a strong mix of capital growth and good rental yields, Slough is proving to be one of the worst kept secrets in the property investment market and property close to the Crossrail connection now comes at a premium as London commuters who are buying or renting want the convenience of living a short walk away.
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