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Property Investment in Bolton – A Guide by Aspen Woolf

Independent property experts Aspen Woolf showcase one of the most exciting investment opportunities of the next few years- Property in Bolton

When you think of property investment in the north of England, you probably won’t immediately think of Bolton. But this Greater Manchester town has so much going for it, including a massive regeneration plan that will transform the town centre.

Bolton is one of the largest towns in Europe. The latest figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS), which were published in mid-2019, say that Bolton’s population stands at 288,200 people.  Not to mention that experts expect it to grow to 300,000 by 2043.

It’s also got a reputation for its warmth and friendliness. This, along with its rich cultural heritage and close transport links to Manchester make it a popular choice for investors.

Is Bolton Good for Investment?

Bolton town itself is the administrative centre of the Metropolitan Borough of Bolton and is about ten miles from Manchester city centre. The borough also includes a number of smaller villages and towns.

And Bolton is undergoing a transformative time. A redevelopment and regeneration plan is underway. Bolton regeneration includes:

  • The £1.5 billion master plan for the town centre plans to refurbish and transform the former magistrate’s court into a luxury hotel, build a 20-storey landmark tower on Trinity Street and demolish Crompton Place shopping centre.
  • Bolton Station Interchange- a development set to combine Bolton rail station with the main bus station. In addition, a Grade A office block worth £6.5 million and spreading over 3,250 sq m, fronting Great Moor Street.
  • Another local development is Church Wharf. Which will cost £120 million and this 13-acre site should be transformed into a dynamic mixture of stylish architecture and stunning open spaces.
  • A new business quarter which will include over 31,500 sq m of office space, apartments and townhouses. In addition, a 6,050 sq m leisure quarter will acompany this development with an 80 bed hotel, cinema, leisure and retail units.
  • Heritage buildings in the area will undergo regeneration as well, in order to be  blended in with the redevelopment in every way, including landscaping and a footbridge over the River Croal

Bolton is a major player within the economy of Greater Manchester, which in turn is at the centre of the Government’s Northern Powerhouse strategy. This aims to revitalise major towns, cities and business hubs across the north of England, to fully release their potential for growth and improvement.

As part of this master plan, Bolton Town Council has formed a development fund worth £100 million, which has attracted more than £1 billion worth of investment and development. The Council is now actively considering a range of possible joint ventures to ensure Bolton becomes what they call a “super-connected digital city.” It represents the sixth part of the master plan that will ultimately completely transform Bolton by 2030.

Bolton is no stranger to successful regeneration projects, with an award-winning project already completed. The Market Place development transformed a Victorian market hall into a vibrant and buzzing retail centre, thanks to an investment of £27 million. In addition, a transport interchange transformed by £50 million worth of investment is also now open.

Bolton Market Place

Key areas for growth in the regeneration plan

Key areas for growth across the town include: 

  • retail, 
  • tourism and leisure, 
  • commercial and office space, 
  • education, 
  • residential and 
  • travel infrastructure. The introduction of SMART technology will create a fully accessible town centre, with new modern housing developments in Bolton and a strong retail heart.

Leader of Bolton Council, David Greenhalgh, explained to that the town must: “embrace innovation and digital technology”, as the best way to stay competitive. Investors should be aware that these initial plans are the start of a much longer and wide-ranging development plan in order to stimulate future growth.

The town centre will be transformed and move away from purely retail services. More than 2,000 new homes will be constructed, while high-profile retail outlets will be retained and expanded. New leisure and hospitality outlets will increase the viability of Bolton town centre and provide for the influx of new residents. 

This radical town centre transformation will fundamentally alter Bolton’s identity by combining with the rebuilding of the aforementioned transport hub and the existing £260 million transformations of the town’s private and public sectors.

Take a look at our new development and invest with only a 20% deposit!

Stone Cross HouseLocated in the city centre, Stone Cross House will be Bolton’s first high specification “City Living” apartment block with integrated smart technology.

This new property for sale in Bolton, completed to a modern, elegant specification will be comprised of 61 apartments broken down into 10 studios, 40 one-bedroom apartments and 11 two-bedroom apartments.

Bolton Economy, Employment & Lifestyle

Bolton attracts young professionals, students and families looking for value for money housing and a town on the way up. Predictions for the town’s population say that it will exceed 300,000 by 2025. And by bringing urban residential property developments into the town centre, Bolton Council aims to improve the town for its residents.

One of the first high-spec “city-living” developments in Bolton is Stone Cross House. This key opportunity for property investors boasts:

  • Low investment costs,
  • high yields and 
  • investment discount from RICS

Also, Bolton is considered as a very attractive business hub. One of the major campaingns, making it even more inviting, is the Get Digital Faster Campaign. Which will be providing the City with high speed fibre-optic broadband.

Bolton’s economic output is worth about £4.6 billion and forms a major part of the economic success of Greater Manchester. Its significance can’t be overstated, particularly because Greater Manchester’s economy is second only to London’s.

Middlebrook Retail and Leisure Park

Bolton is also home to Logistics North, which is a major manufacturing development. One of the biggest in the north of England in fact. In addition, it’s a distribution hub for a number of internationally renowned brands, including: 

MCDA and Amazon. Other major landmarks in Bolton include the Middlebrook development. An 80-hectare site, Middlebrook houses the biggest leisure and retail complex in Europe and is home to Bolton Wanderers FC.

Another major reason people are choosing to move to Bolton is its cosmopolitan culture. Which is influencing further development of other key areas of life (which is also making Bolton house prices spike), such as:

  • Shopping
  • Dining
  • Culture
  • Sports
  • Education

Popular as Bolton is with professionals and families, it’s also a major student town.

University of Bolton: Major Changes Underway

The University of Bolton is in the centre of Bolton. It is also one of the fastest-growing higher education institutions in the country. And it’s also a major part of the town centre regeneration plans, thanks to the investment of £31 million. The funding is transforming the university, by creating a health, leisure and research centre in partnership with NHS Bolton. There will also be a new business and law school as part of the development.

A recent development at the university is the National Centre for Motorsport Engineering, which opened its doors in 2017. There are more projects in the pipeline as investment continues to boost the university. Such as a new hall of residence residential development as part of a £40 million project. 

The student population also currently stands at around 14,000 and contributes to the need for affordable new housing. Not to mention that the plan is to grow this number to 20,000 in near future. Bolton is one of 3 cities in the Greater Manchester area that offers higher education, which is another plus for property investors interested in adding student accommodation properties to their portfolio.

University of Bolton

House Prices & Bolton: Cheap with high buy to let yields

House prices in Bolton have an overall average price of £200,290, based on the most recent data available. The biggest sellers over the last 12 months were terraced houses at an average price of £138,391. Detached properties sold for an average of £366,176, with semi-detached at £190,550. Prices are 8% up on the year before, and 16% up on 2019’s peak of £165,373.

Despite this upward trajectory, house prices are still relatively cheap and offer a good property investment opportunity in Bolton for buy-to-let investors particularly. With so much regeneration underway, it is unlikely that house prices for sale in Bolton will remain so relatively low.

Investors can expect gross yields of: 

  • 4.1% in the Bolton BL1 
  • 4.8% in BL2, 
  • 5.4% in BL3, 
  • 4.9% in BL4, 
  • 3.6% in BL5, 
  • 4.3% in BL6 and 
  • 4% in BL7

Now is a good time for serious property investors to register their interest in this northern town that has so much to offer.

Take a look at the property for sale in Bolton that Aspen Woolf has to offer you.

Properties for sale in Bolton