Are private landlords cashing in on a creative boom?

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Commercial property specialists Savoystewart.co.ukhave identified that private landlords may be cashing in on a creative industry ‘boom’ taking place in the UK; seen in the gargantuan sum of £87bn contributed to the UK economy annually by the digital industry alone.

A major power player in 2017, creative businesses are predominantly small, highly diverse and niche - ranging from fin-tech, to fashion technology and virtual reality. The cross-disciplinary nature of these industries provides a rich environment for ideas, healthy competition and innovation.

“The UK is a global leader in the creative industries. Contributing factors to this success are its connectivity, language, political and legal structures, financial infrastructure, existing business clusters, openness to global companies and access to worldwide talent. It has been a dominant player in the European tech boom.” – ‘Creative Regions’ – CBRE

Contrary to consensus, creative companies of this type are not restricted to London but can be found organically forming in every corner of the UK.

Savoy Stewart assessed data derived from global real estate advisor CBRE, who recently published a report titled ‘Creative Regions’ revealing the UK locations with the most potential to progress and develop as destinations of the future for creative industries such as film, digital and computer programming.

The top 10 locations identified as:

  1. Manchester
  2. Reading
  3. Edinburgh
  4. Cambridge
  5. Glasgow
  6. Oxford
  7. Birmingham
  8. Bristol
  9. Brighton
  10. Leeds

Savoystewart.co.uk found a correlation between the emergence of these creative destinations of the future and rising private rental figures – suggesting private landlords may be keen to exploit talent drawn to the promise of pioneering and prosperous creative opportunities.

Per, Index of Private Housing Rental Prices, Great Britain*, private rental prices paid by tenants in England rose by 1.6 per cent in the last year. Wales saw a growth of 1.4 per cent, while Scotland saw rental prices increase by 0.3 per cent.

But surprisingly, private rental prices in London grew by just 0.9 per cent – 0.7 per cent below the Great Britain 12-month growth rate.

Why is this surprising? Up until recently, London ruled the roost as the UK’s base for growth and prosperity – in business and otherwise. Yet, these figures reveal this may no longer be the case, as private rental prices in London continue to slow.

In fact, The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) reported in their August 2017 Residential Market Survey that near-term expectations are still negative in the capital; an ongoing trend stretching back to August 2016.

Figures Explored

Savoystewart.co.uk found that the largest annual rental prices were in the East Midlands (2.9 per cent), up from 2.8 per cent in August 2017. Followed by the South East (2.5 per cent), down from 2.6 per cent in August 2017, the East of England (2.4 per cent), up from 2.1 per cent in August 2017 and the South West (2.1 per cent), unchanged from August 2017.

Reflecting the draw of destinations such as Oxford, Cambridge and Bristol and the power they are beginning to grasp from the London market.

The lowest annual rental price increases were in the North East (0.4 per cent), unchanged from August 2017, London (0.9 per cent), down from 1.2 per cent in August 2017, the North West (1.3 per cent), down from 1.4 per cent in August 2017 and Yorkshire and The Humber (1.6 per cent), down from 1.7 per cent in August 2017.

Managing director of Savoy Stewart, Darren Best said:

“Business in 2017 is led by innovative markets. Never has it been a bigger desire for individuals to live and work in areas where these markets are booming and serving purpose in the future.

In up-and-coming creative areas, the chance to progress in the modern age is not only possible – but likely. After all, no one wants to get left behind in the digital revolution.”

*The index of Private Housing Rental Prices (IPHRO) measures the change in price of renting residential property from private landlords.

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