Over the past two years, we have explored how the fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic has impacted the property market in the UK. From the initial challenges and shifting behaviour in the market to changing demand and buyer priorities, the property landscape has altered significantly, and we have taken a look at the impact this has had on buyers and investors.
Latest reports have suggested that the demand for apartment living in UK’s regional cities is rising. In this blog post, we explore what has changed, the appeal of apartments in urban areas and our Managing Director, Michael El-Kassir, shares what he thinks about this industry news.
What has changed?
Real Estate company, Rightmove, has reported that since the start of 2022 interest in flats overtook searches for terraced homes, as well as a renewed interest in urban and commuter areas. Tim Bannister, Director of Property Data, said: “In the initial stages of the pandemic, houses stole the show, as people looked for as much room as possible. As restrictions have eased, being closer to city amenities has become more of a priority.”
While the pandemic and shifts towards more flexible working led to buyers considering rural areas, a recent Nationwide survey supports the above Rightmove findings that this is no longer the case. In its House Price Index report for April 2022, it found that “the proportion of those citing a desire to get away from the hustle and bustle of urban life or access to garden / more outside space has declined substantially – to 12% and 15% respectively, down from 25% and 28% in April 2021.”
Appeal of city apartments
Whether it’s to rent or buy, apartments are often a positive first step into the property market. Boasting central locations, excellent local amenities and good transport links, the appeal has long been clear. However, it appears its popularity has been accelerated by the additional provisions of outdoor space, digital connectivity and room to work from home. As we outlined in our blog from last year, the rise of build-to-rent properties has also seen the level of choice among apartments grow, including those with more bespoke features such as a concierge service and residents gym.
A comment from our Managing Director
Michael El-Kassir, Managing Director of GRE Assets, said: “Apartment living has been at the centre of our business since the very beginning, and our focus remains on regional towns and cities. We have had great success in launching apartment-led projects, having launched Reading, Manchester, Brighton, Ashford and Peterborough over the past 16 years.
“The recent reports from Rightmove and Nationwide are promising to see as it shows that apartments in urban locations are still popular among buyers. It suggests that people are recognising the continued importance of connectivity, while knowing that they do not have to compromise on access to outdoor space thanks to provision of balconies and terraces. We have seen strong interest in our apartments over recent months, especially at our Riverside Park development in Ashford.”
GRE Assets has been delivering high quality, well connected homes in the UK and Spain since 2006.