Three University Cities that Offer the Best Buy-to-Let Returns

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    University cities and towns are popular with buy-to-let investors, and it’s easy to see why. With a captive market of students and graduates, tenants are guaranteed and rents near universities tend to have the best yields. Students – who eventually become the city’s young professionals – also help improve local economies, leading to greater development, growth, and ultimately investment possibilities. Here is our pick of the three best university cities offering the best buy-to-let returns for your property investment.

    Leeds offers some of the best buy-to-let returns

    Leeds is one of the fastest growing cities in the UK. Over the past few years there has been a rapidly growing interest in what Leeds has to offer. For example, increasing numbers of large organisations are moving their offices here, including Channel 4 and HMRC.

    There are some huge development projects underway in Leeds, including the truly exciting South Bank regeneration project. This scheme will see Leeds city centre double in size, with two new modern hospitals being built to care for the city’s growing population.

    There is also good levels of investment into the city’s culture. The Tetley contemporary art centre is a beneficiary of a regular Arts Council fund and has received 600,000 visitors over the last five years.

    Home to the busiest train station in the North with 30,000 daily commuters. Only set to improve is the Leeds transport network. With HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail to dramatically reduce journey times to London and other major Northern cities.

    Improved cycling and pedestrian routes will make local journeys easier for the city’s inhabitants; including students travelling to one of the four universities in Leeds. With rental yields of up to 8%, Leeds is a great option for buy-to-let investors.


    If you’re looking for excellent rental yields, Liverpool is the place to invest. According to a report by TotalMoney, six of the twenty top rental yield earning postcodes in 2019 were in Liverpool.

    There is major investment in Liverpool at the moment. The city’s docks are being redeveloped (while protecting their World Heritage Status) and the new Creativity District will become home to some of the numerous successful creative business in Liverpool. There are also new residential developments being built, such as those that will be part of the new Paddington Village scheme.

    Extremely well connected, both domestically and internationally. Liverpool John Lennon Airport had 5 million passengers in 2018 and is constantly increasing the number of flights and routes available. Additionally, London is reachable in just over 2 hours by train. The city’s coach park is also undergoing major expansion to encourage more tourism in the region. With 35,000 students coming to the city each year to attend the University of Liverpool, including 8,000 international students.


    With the largest student population in the UK, Manchester is a firm favourite for investors and tenants alike.

    There are 40,000 people studying in Manchester at any one time; including students from almost every country in the world. Consequently, this has helped attract large numbers of foreign investment to the city with a variety of large-scale developments planned.

    These projects include a new creative space called the Factory that will be home to opera, art, music and community. Furthermore, expected to attract up to 850,000 people each year is this new development.

    As the centre of the Northern Powerhouse, Manchester will also benefit from Northern Powerhouse Rail and HS2.

    Manchester has gone from strength-to-strength over recent years and is an assured choice for property investors.

    To find out more about investing in Leeds, Liverpool, or Manchester, contact North Property Group today.

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