LSH: North West investment up, national deals drop

The first nine months of 2016 saw investment in the region increase by 8% on the same period last year to £2.2bn, according to Lambert Smith Hampton, bucking the national trend where investment fell by 37%.

In 2015, £2bn of property transactions were completed between January and October in the North West. In the same period, last year the national total was £50.6bn, which in 2016 has dropped to £31.7bn.

The third quarter total in the North West was £615m, buoyed by two Manchester deals which were the biggest in the UK outside of London.

One St Peter’s Square was bought by overseas investor Deka Immobilien for £164m, while LaSalle Investment Management bought Renaker Build’s build-to-rent residential scheme currently under construction at Greengate, Salford.

Abid Jaffry, head of northern capital markets at Lambert Smith Hampton, said: “Although you might expect that the recent high levels of investment in the North West has largely come from overseas buyers taking advantage of the devaluation of Sterling post-referendum, that isn’t necessarily the case. More than half of the spend this quarter came from UK-based investors.

“There also is a real spread across the different sectors with office, industrial, retail and hotels all showing strong investment volumes.

“This apparent level of stability is quite surprising when you consider the current political and economic landscape, which has seen investment in Q3 drop by 25% on the same period last year. However, it should be noted that a lot of the deals that happened in Q3, and in particular Greengate and One St Peter’s Square, were committed deals that have taken more than 12 months to complete.

“Nevertheless, despite strong Brexit headwinds, regional performance in the North West market continues to attract significant investment. The road ahead for the UK including the North West will be bumpy so investors will be drawn to marketplaces which have depth and resilience. The underlying fundamentals of strong occupational activity and a mature market therefore bode well for the region.”

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