Bristol has long been seen as a buy-to-let investment hotspot.
With its high employment rates, fast-growing economy and location and travel connections, Bristol has everything a buy-to-let landlord needs to succeed.
Here, we’ll take a look at the local property market, explore some buy-to-let hotspots in the city and give you 10 reasons why your next property investment should be in Bristol…
All about Bristol
Bristol is the most populated city in the South West and its urban area is the 11th largest in the UK as a whole.
Named as the best city to live in on two occasions in 2014 and 2017, the growth of Bristol’s creative and tech sectors has fuelled its popularity alongside a thriving arts scene.
Bristol house prices
The popularity of Bristol and growth of employment means property prices in the city have grown consistently over the past 10 years.
In May 2011, the average price of a property in Bristol was £189,064, but this had increased to £313,978 in May 2021 – a rise of 66%*.
Are house prices falling in Bristol?
House prices in Bristol are rising.
The average price of a property in Bristol was £313,978 in May 2021 – 10.8% higher than at the same time 12 months earlier*.
Rental prices in Bristol
Rental prices in Bristol grew by 5% in the year between May 2020 and May 2021, with the average rental property in the city costing £903 per month*.
Meanwhile, 91% of tenants in Bristol were between the ages of 18-39.
Is Bristol a good place to invest in property?
Bristol is a superb city for property investors.
Although the average cost of a property in Bristol is above the national average price, investors looking for long-term investments and great demand and occupancy should definitely consider the city for their next investment.
In Aldermore Bank’s most recent City Tracker, which ranks the best UK rental hotspots based on yields, average total rent, capital growth and population of renters, Bristol was named in the top-10.
Here are 10 more reasons why Bristol is a great place to invest…
1 High employment means lots of potential tenants
Covid-19 has had a big impact on employment rates in many British towns and cities – but Bristol’s employment rate remains high, despite the pandemic.
Estimates between January 2020 and December 2020 suggest 77.1% of Bristol’s population are in employment, with 31% of those classed as ‘economically inactive’ being students.
2. Bristol’s fast-growing economy
With London rents still out of reach for many, a huge number of young professionals are flocking to Bristol to play a part in its burgeoning creative and tech start-up scene.
Indeed, Bristol was named the third strongest local economy in the UK in April 2021, with the study from Raisin considering the towns and cities best placed to cope with economic challenges in the wake of the pandemic.
Bristol’s growth is set to continue, too.
3. Bristol’s great location and transport links
Bristol's position in the South West makes it a great place for all kinds of demographics to live.
Its excellent rail connections mean a London commute via Temple Meads takes one hour 35 minutes.
The M4, meanwhile directly connects Bristol to the capital by road, with the M5 linking the city with the Midlands and the North West.
4. Bristol is a university city
The University of Bristol and University of the West of England means thousands of students live in the city - and a fair number of those remain after graduation, thanks to Bristol's booming technology and start-up scene.
Those looking for student property investment opportunities should definitely consider Bristol.
5. Bristol’s ‘cool’ city status
Thanks to a younger demographic flocking to the city for its technology start-up scene and high employment rates, Bristol was named Europe's trendiest city in National Geographic's Cool List.
That placed it ahead of Abu Dhabi and Paris!
6. Bristol is home to global businesses
Bristol is home to a huge number of global businesses, including:
• Aerospace firm Airbus, which employs around 3,000 people in the city
• Law firm Hargreaves Lansdown employs 1,185 in Bristol
• Rolls Royce has a base in Filton
• Global financial company Computershare employs 12,000 people worldwide – with many of them based at the firm’s HQ in Bristol
7. Amazing shopping and amenities for renters
Bristol experienced rapid growth through the 20th and 21st centuries and that means the city now offers every amenity a tenant could ever want – including some incredible shopping.
The Broadmead and Cabot Circus shopping areas, meanwhile, are supported by the Harbourside which is home to dozens of bars, restaurants and clubs.
8. Rental demand is among the highest in the country
Bristol rental property is among the most in-demand in the UK – with two thirds of all properties advertised for rent already let at the end of 2020.
Those high levels of demand look set to continue throughout 2021 and beyond, meaning plenty of opportunities for new investors to provide amazing homes for eager tenants.
9. There are plans for regeneration
Bristol is thriving, but there’s always room for more improvements – and around £1 billion has been earmarked for various upgrades in the coming months and years.
A £450 million riverside housing scheme is planned for the Western Harbour area, while the Temple Quarter will see a host of academic buildings and residential development over the next five years – including a new £300 million campus for the University of Bristol.
Temple Meads station, meanwhile, will be allocated a share of £5 billion to upgrade the Bristol railways – cutting journey times to London and boosting service frequency by around 50%.
10. Bristol comes with a lifestyle
With attractions like the Clifton Suspension Bridge, cathedral, Avon Gorge observatory and much more, Bristol is packed full of history and culture.
As well as the city’s great employment opportunities, tenants are also attracted to Bristol because of the relaxed lifestyle it offers, alongside some amazing rental properties.
Where can I invest in Bristol?
Location is key when pondering what part of Bristol to invest in.
The key to deciding this is to think about the kind of tenants you’re targeting.
A city centre apartment, for example, won’t suit a small family as much as it will a young professional.
And a three-bedroom house in Westbury-on-Trym is unlikely to appeal to young, city-loving workers, but would to a family looking for peace, quiet and good schools.
There are a host of great areas to invest in throughout Bristol – and here are some the best…
Thanks to the Clifton Suspension Bridge, the BS8 area is one of the first people think of in Bristol.
Picturesque and trendy, Clifton Village's multitude of cafes and independent shops make it a popular area for young, professional renters.
Average property price in Clifton*: £461,073
Average asking rent in Clifton*: £1,076
Thanks to its 1990s regeneration, Southville now rivals more expensive areas of Bristol with its independent shops, bars, restaurants and community feel.
The harbour is a short walk away, which renters love.
Average property price in Southville*: £329,337
Average asking rent in Southville*: £906
With its range of Victorian terraces and semi-detached homes, not to mention falling into the sought-after Redland Green and Cotham School catchment areas, Bishopston is something of a haven for families looking for larger rental properties.
Average property price in Bishopston*: £349,353
Average asking rent in Bishopston*: £1,194
*Property price and rental price data from Dataloft Inform
If you’re looking for a property to rent or buy in Bristol, take a look at our guide showcasing the best places to live in the city.
And if you’re thinking of investing in property for the first time, you might be considering using a letting agent – here are 10 reasons why you should.