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 Northern Highlights 
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Joined: Mon Sep 13, 2010 1:47 pm
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Post Northern Highlights
by: Jim Barnaby

In times of economic gloom, it often seems to be the north which suffers most, with recessions seeing many people in grim northern towns kicking their heels as the factories shut. Stereotyped as this image may be, it contained a kernel of truth, for historically speaking bad economic times have hit the north worse than the south.

Not any more, however. For one thing, the last time the economy hit the buffers, in the early 1990s, it was the south which suffered more than the north. In the current climate that may also be the case. While most commentators regard a recession in the UK economy as unlikely, the downturn in the property market is real enough. Yet the hit which city bonuses will have taken after the credit crunch may reduce spending in London, hitting capital prices most.

However, there are other factors concerning the north's relative fortunes as well, such as the fact that in a post-industrial age its cities are more geared towards service industries than previously, meaning in a housing context that commuter suburbs and apartments in city centres occupied by professionals are areas of high relevance to overall house price issues, with both sorts of location being sought after as they are closely linked to places of work either by proximity or good transport links.

Such factors are critical in maintaining urban prices, Stephen Hogg, a partner at King Sturge Residential in Manchester told the Times. He said: "Even if the worst property crisis ever to hit in the history of man happens this year, people will still want to live in Chepstow House and the Century Buildings in Manchester."

These buildings, of course, are among the many city-living opportunities that have mushroomed in the city, as they have in Liverpool and Leeds. Mr Hogg also suggested that the suburbs which do have good transport links will also be safe from any general property slowdown, stating: "Places with the tram link into Manchester, such as Didsbury and Altrincham, will be in the best position to hold their values." (in the case of Didsbury, this tram service has not yet been established, but the district is linked to central Manchester by rail)

As well as Manchester, the rest of the north has plenty of 'bomb proof' property spots, the paper notes, comprising other commuter areas such as Wetherby in Yorkshire (ideally situated for commuters into Bradford and Leeds), places with large student populations (good for buy-to-let) and scenic areas such as the Lake District (where second homes go for millions), all providing such insurance against a slowing market.

Mr Hogg is certainly not alone in his assessment about Manchester. Last month Ian Perry of City South Developments forecast that a whole range of new developments would keep the pot bubbling.

He told the Manchester Evening News: "The continued revitalisation of east Manchester, MediaCity, Metrolink expansion and the potential for many new corporates to be basing themselves in the city, means the market is still buoyant here, much more than other regional capitals."

Last month the Independent listed Liverpool as one of the likely 2008 property hotspots due to the major, though ephemeral, splat of its European Capital of Culture status. However it seems that many places in the north have more permanent and lasting appeals which should ensure, whichever half of the country does best or worst in leaner economic times, that the hotspots stay hot.

Property investment is an excellent investment option especially investment in UK

About The Author
Jim Barnaby is a real estate investment broker and successful property investment adviser delivering research and selected UK and overseas property investment solutions with experience in spanish properties, french property investment, German property, Cyprus holiday homes, Property in Cape Verde, German property investment, cape verde property buy to let property.

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Mon Dec 15, 2008 4:42 pm
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