You have probably already noticed, but the Sheffield City Region is currently seeing a huge boost in property investment. unLTD’s Matt Holmes caught up with James Holding, regional auction manager of Auction House South Yorkshire, about what we can expect from the future

“Investors have realised there is strong demand across the Sheffield City Region, and that rental yields for investment properties are regularly in double digits,” says James. “Especially if bought via auction, with open market stock seeing returns in excess of 6-7 per cent.”

Developments like Sheffield’s Heart of the City, the Jobs and Business Plan in Barnsley and a £49 million scheme in Doncaster is increasing demand for housing stock in both the homeowner and buy-to-let markets.

These developments ensure the linear rise in prices we have seen in the SCR will continue, unlike less-stable peaks and troughs in cities like Manchester and Leeds where returns are generally lower.

James explains: “There are a number of local hotspots in the Sheffield City Region that are worth looking at now and in the future.”

One is Wombwell on the outskirts of Barnsley, which is benefiting from the aforementioned town centre investment, as well as neighbouring Rotherham with its proximity to major trunk roads such as the M1. Doncaster benefits from the borough’s strong transport links on the East Coast Mainline where passengers can reach London in just over 90 minutes.

“I strongly believe that these areas will see significant price rises in the future,” says James. “If projects such as HS2 materialise this will further increase prices and, consequently, increase investment income.”

The majority of properties sold at auction are subject to an immediate exchange of contracts, bypassing lengthy delays and complications expected via a traditional route. Completion can occur in as little as 14 to 28 days, gaining quicker access to the investment.

“The key benefits of auctions for both buyers and sellers are speed and certainty,” says James.

Auction lots are sold with access to a legal pack containing all the information for purchasing the property. Auction House South Yorkshire ensures all buyers are aware of alleviating any concerns throughout the purchase process.

So, how might you go about purchasing an investment property in the Sheffield City Region?

“The key here is research and consultation with property professionals, current investors as well as a reputable financial advisor,” says James. “Have a clear idea of your strategy in respect of the returns you want to achieve and the investment you can comfortably make.

“Mitigate risk by ensuring you have undertaken all necessary due diligence. If you’re planning on building a portfolio within the City Region, then form a good working relationship with a reputable and reliable solicitor.”

The stamp duty holiday and a lack of property stock has the country in a post-lockdown boost. James believes, although prices may plateau in future, our region shouldn’t experience significant decline due to continued investment, and that since the 2008 market crash there has been slow but steady growth.

If you want to be part of this local property investment boom, James has this advice: “Don’t leave it too late! The Sheffield City Region has established itself as a force to be reckoned with and we believe is likely to be future-proofed for years to come.”