Empiric adds to portfolio as student demand continues to rise

Listed student accommodation developer and landlord, Empiric Student Property, is progressing with new and refurbished halls in Manchester as its nationwide portfolio passes through £750m.

Empiric has 8,762 beds, either operating or under development, across 90 assets in 30 university cities and towns in the UK.

Seven of these sites are under construction and due to complete shortly ready for the autumn 2017 intake. This includes on in Manchester, 87 beds in 73 flats in the former Welsh Baptist Chapel on Upper Brook Street. Empiric will acquire the site from CZero Developments on completion of the project, designed by Buttress Architects.

Empiric recently received planning permission from Manchester City Council for the redevelopment of Victoria Point. Originally developed as a private residential scheme, Victoria Point, bought by Empiric from MCR a year ago, comprises 561 beds across six buildings which are set out in a mix of two, three and four bedroom apartments. The phased redevelopment will see the conversion of some of the multi-bed apartments into studio apartments, others upgraded as shared apartments and the addition of communal facilities. The first of these buildings, with 132 beds, is currently being refurbished and will be available for the 2017/18 academic year. It is expected that the rental income on this building post refurbishment will enjoy a significant uplift.

CBRE valued the portfolio on 30 April 2017 at £786.7m including forward funded commitments, compared to £721.3m at the end of last year.

The group said in a trading update ahead of its half-year end on 30 June that it expects to have a rent roll of £63.6m in the 2017/18 academic year, up from £52.1m in December.

The company said: “The fundamentals of the UK student accommodation sector remain positive, with excess demand and limited supply persisting.”


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