In a class of its own: £1.9 billion invested in UK student accommodation in 2016

In a class of its own: £1.9 billion invested in UK student accommodation in 2016

  • £1.9 billion invested into UK student accommodation (Jan – Aug 2016, Savills)
  • UK “most in-demand destination for global cross-border institutional and private capital” (Savills)
  • Student accommodation scene in Bradford offering an 8% NET returns (Properties of the World)

The latest Savills Spotlight on World Student Housing (2016/17) report has revealed that once again student accommodation is in a class of its own, no longer a “niche investment opportunity” but a global asset class.

Of the USD $8 billion invested globally in the first eight months of the year, over 30%, USD $2.5 billion (£1.9 billion) has been invested in UK student accommodation cementing the domestic student accommodation market’s maturity and attractiveness.

Indeed, it is not only domestic investors piling into the UK student accommodation market but overseas buyers also with Savills stating that the UK was “by far the most in-demand destination for global cross-border institutional and private capital.” Over the last 3 years alone, the UK sector has attracted a whopping USD $9 billion in inbound investment.

Jean Liggett, CEO of visionary property investment consultancy, Properties of the World, which has successfully sold countless student property investments across the UK, comments,

“The student accommodation market, especially in the UK, has truly come into its own in the last few years. Purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) now houses just over 30% of full-time students in the UK, some half a million beds, but this is still not enough.

“Public institutions and the UK’s universities simply cannot meet the demand from today’s ever growing number of students for good quality housing and so it is left to operators in the private sector to build the beds which in turn offers opportunity for savvy private investors.”

And even Brexit uncertainty does not appear to be denting confidence in UK student accommodation. In fact, the fall of sterling has made studying in the UK cheaper for overseas students and buying PBSA more affordable for overseas investors.

Jean continues, “student accommodation is still seen as a stable income-producing asset and if anything, in the face of Brexit, it’s in a great position to benefit from a rise in investor appetites during times of economic and market uncertainty.”

But what and where should investors buy?

With 21st century students demanding more for their money, Jean advises her clients to consider PBSA developments with additional facilities and on-site amenities. One such example is The Dye Works, located overlooking the University of Bradford campus.

Situated only a one-minute walk from the main Bradford University Campus, The Advanced Technology Centre and Bradford College’s David Hockney Campus, Dye Works is ideally located for discerning students. Centrally located in Bradford’s purpose built Learning Quarter, students will have direct access to the university campus as well as a variety of retail outlets and public transport links. Dye Works will also house a number of students from Bradford College, one of the largest colleges in the UK.

With the University of Bradford named in the top 200 of the world’s most international universities 2016, the city attracts students from across the globe with Dye Works catering for local and international students alike. The university projects a 30% increase in the number of students by 2024 making Dye Works a perfect opportunity for investment in an expanding sector.

All apartments are self-contained with spacious double beds, en-suite bathrooms, fully furnished kitchens and plenty of work and storage space. Other features include large communal spaces for students to socialise, table tennis, pool table, games consoles, televisions and Wi-Fi throughout.

This contemporary student accommodation scheme offers a highly competitive three year fixed annual income return of 8%, with a 6% coupon during the construction period. A limited number of self-contained stylish studios are available for investment for a pre-launch discount price of £55,000 with no stamp duty due.

Dye Works is the sister student accommodation to Campus House (overlooking Bradford University campus). Properties of the World sold over one third of the self-contained large studios at Campus House in 2014. It continues to achieve close to 100% occupancy, and is a favourite particularly amongst post-graduate and international students.

For more information, please visit or phone +44 (0)20 7624 5555