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Property Investment in Sunderland – A Guide by Aspen Woolf

We take a look at the reasons why you should take a closer look at property investment in Sunderland. As well as the areas catching the attention of investors. 

Sunderland is a city shedding its industrial past, emerging as a dynamic place to live, work and play. Millions of pounds of investment is transforming the borough. In addition to attracting businesses as a sustainable and vibrant hub to grow, as well as bringing solid employment opportunities. 

As new homes, workplaces and jobs emerge, alongside fantastic attractions and amenities, Sunderland is emerging as an up-and-coming investment property investment destination. 

With a diverse range of properties available, there’s something to offer a wide range of investors. From large houses to contemporary flats, and a thriving university scene that catalyses the student rental market,

  • Investment is Transforming Sunderland

The renewal and resurgence of the Sunderland region is driven by more than £1.5 billion of private and public investment money coming into the city by 2024. Additionally, public-private partnerships are transforming the borough into an attractive hub. A hub with new living spaces and opportunities for businesses in the leisure, retail and hospitality sectors. 

Investments in business and development have been a priority for Sunderland in recent years. 

The Sunderland Software City project, funded by £1.4 million from the European Regional Development Fund is driving the region’s digital economy. The project is supporting SMEs and the growth of digital skills training and development.

Another recent investment project is the £160m combined investment from investor Legal & General, put towards new Grade A office space on the Riverside Sunderland. The two new buildings will create 150,000 sq ft of office space and become home to a wide range of businesses when complete in 2024.

Northern Spire Bridge in Sunderland

  • An Active Rental Market

With a growing number of businesses and a thriving student population, Sunderland has an active rental market. Which makes it attractive to property investors. 

Out of the city’s 277,700 city residents, 173,600 are of working age with a median pay of £27,394. This population creates a thriving tenant market for buy-to-let inventors, made up of working professionals and family tenants. 

Property investment in Sunderland is attracting would-be landlords thanks to a thriving student demographic, too. The University of Sunderland alone is home to 14,700 students. In addition, a total of 106,000 students attend the region’s five universities, two of which are part of the Russell Group.

Buy-to-let student accommodation is one of the property sector’s most lucrative rental markets. As a university town, there will always be demand for student accommodation in Sunderland, making rental income all but guaranteed and houses and flats in the right location fiercely sought after. 

While there are downsides like wear and tear, landlords can usually generate higher yields by focusing on the student rental market. 

  • Home to International Businesses 

Sunderland was named Smart City of the year 2020 as well as a key player in innovative sectors that attract international businesses from around the world. Over 5,500 businesses call Sunderland home, including 80 international corporations employing more than 100,000 people

Global businesses like Nisa, Berghaus, Ocaso, Rolls Royce, Barclays and EDF Energy each have a base in Sunderland, which continues to attract a well-educated workforce thanks to the employment opportunities on offer.

Is Sunderland Good for Property Investment?

From December 2021 – November 2022, the average price of a property in Sunderland was £172,000. With the average property prices in England and Wales over the same period at £283,000, landlords can get a property for excellent value for money in Sunderland

Landlords have slowly turned their eye to the area, thanks to the attractive yields on offer. According to Lofti, average yields in Sunderland in 2022 were 5.5%. The North East in general had average yields of 4.6%. 

Is Sunderland Up-and-Coming?

With regeneration transforming the city and sparking more interest in the area, businesses are beginning to move into the Sunderland region. Additionally, they are bringing with them jobs and more people to the borough. As the population of Sunderland grows, this may also push up the price of the houses for sale, helping properties appreciate. 

With more economic opportunities, demand for rental properties is on the rise, making Sunderland an up-and-coming investment destination. Generally, rents are rising across the UK due to a lack of stock. Average rents across the UK were up 10.8% annually in December 2022

Higher borrowing, lack of stock and regulatory changes mean that the rental market is unlikely to get cheaper anytime soon. Typical rent in Sunderland is currently £968.04, meaning landlords can find plenty of properties with attractive yields.

Are House Prices Rising in Sunderland?

From 2021 – 2022, the average sale price of property in the city rose by £12,000. Despite an overall 2.6% decrease in house prices in the Northeast in November 2022 and a 0.3% drop nationally, house prices in Sunderland had a small jump of 0.7%.

Despite a generally upward trend, houses in Sunderland remain affordable. In other words, this makes an investment property in Sunderland attractive. Sunderland ranks second on the list of most affordable boroughs to buy a property in England and Wales. Sunderland came in second at £157,344, behind Gateshead with the top spot at £155,375. This is good news for investors looking to buy a property in Sunderland.

Where to Invest in Sunderland

Sunderland is part of the wider Tyne and Wear region which includes Newcastle upon Tyne plus Gateshead, North Tyneside and South Tyneside.

If you’re curious about buy to rent property or looking for properties to buy in Sunderland for yourself, there are plenty of upcoming areas would-be landlords should keep in mind. 

  • Seaburn

With close proximity to the sea, Seaburn is a popular coastal town in Sunderland. Seaburn has a mix of residential and holiday properties and offers plenty of parks and open spaces, including Seaburn park.

Seaburn’s close proximity to the nearby coastline means that it is regarded as one of the most desirable areas of the city to live in. Therefore, for landlords to find good investment properties as well. This is generally where you’ll find the highest house prices in Sunderland.

According to RightMove, properties for sale in Seaburn Sunderland had an average property price of  £231,753 over the last year. Meanwhile, properties to rent in Seaburn were an average of £690 per calendar month.

  • Roker 

Roker is a lively seaside town known for its beach and pier. The North Sunderland Suburb is home to award-winning beaches. It is also well-connected to the rest of Sunderland and is home to plenty of shops, cafes and restaurants. Each year Roker hosts the Sunderland International Airshow, the biggest free airshow in Europe. 

The population of Roker is approximately 4,600. Roker has undergone rapid demographic change since the arrival of the St Peter’s Campus at the University of Sunderland. Which brought more professional and managerial workers. Many of the houses in the vicinity of Roker Avenue are being converted into flats and student residences. This is supposed to meet the needs of a growing student market. 

If you’re looking for a house to buy in Sunderland, the majority of properties in Roker are terraced or semi-detached properties. Bordering Fulwell to the west, investors can additionally find a number of semi-detached bungalows.

According to Rightmove, properties for sale in Roker Sunderland had an overall average price of £173,078 over the last year

  • Fulwell

The affluent residential area of Fulwell is located in the North of Sunderland. Open spaces like Seaburn Park and Rockwell park, alongside restaurants and bars make it popular among residents and visitors.

Fulwell has a wide range of housing stock on offer. From nineteenth-century terraced houses to semi-detached properties, with many of the popular streets constructed in the 1930s. Out of property to buy in Sunderland, house prices, particularly in the area’s eastern and western edges bordering Seaburn and Newcastle Road, are amongst the highest in the city.

According to Rightmove, average property prices in Fulwell in the past year were £183,758

Properties to rent in Fulwell Sunderland had an average rental price of £666 pcm.


Is Sunderland a good place to invest in property? With investment transforming the city, the appeal of seaside living, a strong student and professional rental market as well as affordable property prices well below the UK average, there are plenty of reasons to consider Sunderland as a property investment destination. To find out more, get in touch with our property experts.