Most of the property hotspot talk these days is about the North of England and Wales. There is good reason for this as in the university areas rental yields are high and the prices of property are reasonably low.
But another major university town has hit the headlines recently and this one is in the South East. It is Reading in Berkshire. Reading sits on the River Thames about 40 miles outside of London. Reading University was number 30 in the World University Rankings 2019 and viewed as the UK’s answer to Silicon Valley with all the tech companies located there.
The property market in Reading is thriving right now and we want to explain to you why the town is considered to be such a property investment hotspot right now. There are a lot of good reasons for this.
Excellent Transport Links
Reading has great transport links to Central London and London Heathrow Airport. It takes just half an hour to get to Paddington Station by train from Reading and the airport is just a 30 minute drive on the M4.
A new rail line (the Elizabeth Line) opens in Reading at the end of 2019 and this will allow commuters to London to travel right across the capital without the need to change trains. This will certainly have a positive impact on the property market.
Great University and young population
More than 19,000 students from over 150 countries across the world attend the University of Reading. The university is renowned across the world and there is a large influx of young people into the town because of this.
A lot of the university students stay in Reading after they graduate and lots of other young professionals move to the town because of the opportunities for jobs. All of these people need somewhere to live and most will rent and a small number will buy a property in the town.
The Local Enterprise Partnership for Thames Valley Berkshire was second in the United Kingdom because of its low 3.6% unemployment rate and for its GDP per capita which is the second highest below London.
Reading is also a great place to do business according to Management Today who ranked it 5th in the UK. The town has the highest wages outside of the capital according to Management Today and there was more than £7 million invested in the town’s Central Business district over the last decade.
The economy in Reading is strong and it overtook Manchester as the town or city with the most growth in the country from 2018 to 2021 according to the latest EY Economic Forecastle.
The Gross Added Value (GVA) of Reading forecast is 2.2% which is higher than the 1.7% average for the country. One of the reasons for the high GVA is the technology sector in Reading which has forecast growth of 3.5% for the next 3 years. Almost a third of jobs in Reading are in the technology sector.
Reading is a nice location
Just on the doorstep of Reading is some really beautiful countryside with the Chiltern Hills and the North Wessex Downs. So it is easy for people that live in the town to find wonderful spots to relax in that are not far from home.