Are Universities Driving Birmingham Property Prices?
Birmingham is the largest centre of higher education outside of London for the UK, home to four universities of which two ranks amongst the top 400 in the QA World University Rankings 2018. With Aston University, Birmingham City University (BCU), University of Birmingham (UoB) and Newman University, Birmingham has a strong graduate pool to choose from, ideal for a city that is currently enjoying tremendous amounts of inward investment and commercial growth.
Birmingham offers students affordability without compromising on excellent lifestyle and quality learning opportunities.
There’s solid evidence that universities and other education centres play a huge role in raising the profile and property prices of a location. In the past three years that a typical degree would take to complete, property prices in 65 university towns rose by an average 23%.
Areas such as Guildford (University of Surrey) and Uxbridge (Brunel University) saw the biggest rises, increasing by £105,000 (26%) over the last three years. Bedfordshire also saw an incredible rate of growth, with property prices rising by 42% over the same time period.
Birmingham, with its four universities and several major colleges, also benefits from a further 20 universities being within an hour of Greater Birmingham. The second city has the second largest population of students in the UK, meaning it’s geared toward an excellent nightlife and shopping experience, important benefits that hold appeal amongst tenants and subsequently, investors.
Culturally, Birmingham has plenty to offer including theatres, museums and galleries, numerous attractions and a full program of year-round events. The tourism sector hit its peak during 2016, where 39 million tourists worth an estimated £6.5 billion to the city economy visited Birmingham.
These huge numbers obviously mean many more graduates reside in Birmingham, making it an excellent incubator environment for entrepreneurs and startups. From creative ventures to digital agencies and tech startups, Birmingham is home to nearly 6,000 technology firms that employ nearly 38,300 people.
This entrepreneurial atmosphere was especially important for startup businesses. With an estimated 12,100 businesses started in 2017, Birmingham ranked highest out of any regional location in the UK.
The impact that Birmingham universities, and thus the graduates, has on Birmingham cannot be dismissed. They’re a major part of the future of the city and help maintain the ‘startup juggernaut’, directly affecting commercial growth for the city as a whole.
Investors would be wise to look at the level of growth that is afforded by excellent universities. Each of these education centres drives property prices and tenant demand thanks to the associated amenities and lifestyle improvements, not to mention the effect that graduates have on the ‘population boom’ that is currently occurring.
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