As we step into 2024, the City of Manchester stands poised at the precipice of unparalleled growth and development. With its dynamic blend of culture, commerce, and innovation, Manchester continues to solidify its position as a leading hub not only within the UK but on the global stage.

The selection of Manchester as the venue for Chanel’s 2023 fashion show, closely following the inauguration of the UK’s notable arts hub, Factory International, is no mere coincidence.

It serves as a clear indication that Manchester has emerged as a premier destination. The city’s ascent marks a significant shift in cultural influence towards the North, solidifying its status as one of Europe’s most vibrant and rapidly expanding urban centers. 

This signals a notable shift in cultural influence to the North, cementing Manchester’s position as one of Europe’s most vibrant and rapidly growing urban hubs right now. It’s clear that Manchester has emerged as a premier destination. And the rain isn’t that bad. Honest.

In the remainder of this article, we will explore the wealth of investment potential in student and residential properties, offering some key insights for all you savvy investors.

the city of manchester blog post


Manchester Student Accommodation: A Booming Sector

One of the most notable areas of growth in Manchester lies within its student accommodation sector. With a consistently increasing student population, driven by renowned educational institutions such as the University of Manchester, Manchester Metropolitan University, and the University of Salford, demand for high-quality student housing remains robust.

Recent forecasts suggest a significant surge in the student population over the next five years, with an estimated annual growth rate of 3% expected until 2029. This steady influx of students underscores the need for purpose-built accommodation, presenting investors with a lucrative opportunity to capitalize on the city’s thriving academic landscape.

Citing research from StuRents, the latest article from Savills highlights the projected increase in first-year graduates in the UK to one million by 2030, resulting in a significant shortfall of 450,000 student beds across Greater Manchester. This forecast underscores the expected rise in activity within the Purpose-Built Student Accommodation (PBSA) sector as investors seek high-yielding assets. 

With Manchester boasting a 50% graduate retention rate and welcoming 32,000 graduates annually—more than the combined total of Liverpool, Leeds, and Sheffield—the city is positioned as an attractive investment destination.

In anticipation of this trend, 2024 is anticipated to witness a surge in co-living schemes targeting individuals aged 18-35, aimed at addressing the accommodation gap between students and young professional graduates.

manchester student accommodation

Residential Properties In Manchester: Riding the Wave of Expansion

In parallel, the residential property market in Manchester continues to exhibit remarkable resilience and growth potential. As the city attracts an influx of professionals seeking career opportunities and an enhanced quality of life, demand for housing solutions across various segments remains buoyant.

Manchester is basking in the cool spotlight, having been ranked 15th in Time Out’s 2024 survey of the “Best Cities in the World”. This recognition isn’t just a fleeting title – the impact is tangible. According to a 2023 report by Savills, a leading estate agent, Manchester saw a 35% increase in young professionals (aged 22-39) moving to the city compared to the previous year. 

This influx is driven by the city’s undeniable cool factor: a thriving music scene (home to iconic bands like The Smiths and Oasis), a diverse food scene boasting Michelin-starred restaurants and trendy street food markets, and a burgeoning art scene with world-class galleries and museums.

Forecasts indicate that Manchester’s residential market is poised for sustained expansion, with property prices projected to appreciate by an average of 2-4% annually over the next decade. 

Savills anticipates a 24.3% increase in house prices by 2026, translating to roughly 2-3% average annual growth.This growth trajectory is underpinned by several factors, including ongoing infrastructure investments, urban regeneration projects, and the city’s burgeoning reputation as a vibrant cultural and economic center.

Looking Ahead: Seizing the Opportunities 

Against the backdrop of these promising forecasts, investors are presented with a compelling opportunity to participate in Manchester’s transformative journey.

Whether through strategic investments in purpose-built student accommodation or residential developments tailored to meet the evolving needs of the city’s diverse population, the potential for long-term returns is undeniable.

Moreover, Manchester’s commitment to innovation and sustainability further enhances its appeal as a prime investment destination. With initiatives aimed at fostering sustainable urban development and enhancing connectivity, the city lays the groundwork for continued prosperity and growth in the years to come.

As we navigate the landscape of opportunity that Manchester presents in 2024 and beyond, one thing remains clear: the city’s trajectory is defined by ambition, resilience, and boundless potential. For investors seeking to embark on a journey of growth and prosperity, Manchester stands ready to deliver.

manchester property opportunities

If you’re searching for investment opportunities in Manchester, do not hesitate to reach out to our team of experts here at X1 Sales & Lettings!

Read next: Casting a Vision: The Next 5 Years in UK Property Investment.