Muse completes PRS forward sale in Northern Quarter

Oxford-based Global Real Estate Investments has bought the entire residential block of 77 units in Muse Developments' latest phase of Smithfield Square, Manchester nearly one year before practical completion.

Muse Developments forward sold all the apartments at One Smithfield Square for an undisclosed sum.

The deal is the latest to recognise Manchester and the North West as a viable option for the emerging investment class of the private rented sector, following Sigma's deal for housing development in Salford and Liverpool with Kuwaiti-owned Gatehouse Bank last month.

Wes Erlam, senior development surveyor for Muse explains: "This is great news for the scheme and for Manchester. It's a sign that the Manchester market is now recovering and proving an attractive option for investors.

"All of the homes at Smithfield are now sold a year before completion – a fantastic result for Muse, our development partner Manchester City Council, and funding partner the Homes & Communities Agency. We still have 6,000 sq ft of ground floor commercial space available and look forward to complementing the scheme with a selection of retail and restaurant options."

Andrew Lock, development director at GRE Assets, added: "This represents our first investment in Manchester, a city we firmly believe contains all the ingredients we're looking for – a strong economy, excellent transport links and world class university."

One Smithfield Square is a mix of one, two and three-bedroom apartments. GRE will now rent the apartments at the scheme to the local market.

Muse has planning permission for an initial stage of shell restoration and refurbishment of the grade 2-listed building known locally as the Mackie Mayor, owned by Manchester City Council.

Eversheds advised Muse Developments. Construction is ongoing by contractor Galliford Try. The project was designed by Mark Weintraub Architecture & Design. Ryder is the project architect during delivery.

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