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Newcastle’s first skyscraper marks defining moment in the city’s history

Newcastle is soon to have its first skyscraper – the iconic Hadrian’s Tower, which will bring world-class, capital quality residences to the city. The building marks a defining moment for Newcastle’s development, just as the erection of Beetham Tower did for Manchester some 12 years ago.

Completed in 2006, at a cost of £150 million, Beetham Tower was a landmark building for Manchester. The tallest building in the UK outside of London and the highest residential building in Europe (at the time), it was seen by many as bringing Manchester into the big league in terms of its global city credentials.
From a property market perspective, Beetham Tower was also big news. Even today, the building’s iconic status means that it commands exceptional prices. Second hand sales there are reaching up to £750 per square foot. By way of comparison, new build units in Manchester are just starting to achieve £500 per square foot, meaning that Beetham Tower is achieving 150% above the best of the rest that Manchester has to offer.
Just as investors saw the potential of Beetham Tower in igniting interest in Manchester, Hadrian’s Tower in Newcastle is causing ripples of excitement within property circles. Showcased by its developers, The High Street Group, in Cannes at the MIPIM property show in March, the building has catapulted Newcastle to the attention of investors from around the globe. It will become Newcastle’s tallest building by a considerable margin, standing 82 metres tall and housing 27 storeys.
Surrenden Invest Newcastle Skyscraper
The Romans built the first bridge across the River Tyne at Newcastle nearly 2,000 years ago. Now, Hadrian’s Tower continues that spirit of proud ambition, taking the city to the next level just as that very first bridge did.
Expectations are certainly high for Hadrian’s Tower. At present, the priciest new builds can be found in the Gosforth area of the city, where they command up to around £450 per square foot. We anticipate that Hadrian’s Tower will emulate the impact of Beetham Tower in Manchester just over a decade ago, pushing price boundaries in Newcastle closer to £500 per square foot.
Newcastle already has so much to offer in terms of its credentials as a world-class city. The city is awash with culture and history, while its retail, dining and nightlife offering draws in crowds from across the North East and beyond. The skyline is already home to some stunning buildings and Hadrian’s Tower will elevate it to the next level. It’s a really special moment in Newcastle’s evolution.

For further details email us at: or call us on: 0203 3726 499

Surrenden Invest takes pole position as primary sponsor of British racing driver Nick Yelloly

Combining his passion for motorsports with his respect for those who follow their dreams, Jonathan Stephens of leading property investment agency Surrenden Invest last year announced that his company was sponsoring promising racing driver Nick Yelloly.

Now, Jonathan has announced that Surrenden Invest will be the main sponsor backing Nick’s championship hopes for the 2018 season as well. Nick is racing in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, which started the new season in style in Barcelona over the weekend of 11-13 May. Having worked his way up from racing karts at the tender age of 15, Nick raced in the Porsche Carrera Cup Germany last season, racking up three wins and eight podium positions across the cup’s 14 races. Now, he’s taking to Europe for the 2018 Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, racing across the continent before heading over to Mexico for the season’s grand finale.

“It was a real privilege to sponsor such a talented driver and to see Nick flourish in Germany last year, so I’m delighted that he has accepted Surrenden Invest as his main sponsor as he tours Europe and South America this summer. Nurturing young talent in this way is a key part of keeping the racing industry alive. Having followed my own entrepreneurial vision from a young age, it’s fantastic to be able to support others in doing so.”

Jonathan Stephens, Managing Director, Surrenden Invest
With the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup underway, Nick’s hopes are high. The determined young driver is raring to go, with his sights set on fighting for the championship win in 2018. Boasting more crowds and greater hype than the Porsche Carrera Cup Germany, the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup delivers an outstanding atmosphere. It also delivers greater exposure to sponsors, which to Nick is an important factor.

Racing as we know and love it would simply not be possible without sponsorship; the industry as a whole owes so much to its sponsors. For me personally, Surrenden Invest’s sponsorship is allowing me to live my dream and be the best driver that I can be – I wouldn’t be able to race in a top team without this kind of funding. However, there’s also the personal element of the support – Jonathan was out in Barcelona this weekend, and plans to be in Monaco for the second race of the season.”

Nick Yelloly
The Monaco circuit is a firm favourite with many racing drivers and Nick is no exception. Silverstone also makes for a very special race, in part because of its legendary status and in part because, living just 40 minutes away, Nick always has plenty of hometown support behind him when he races there. Surrenden Invest’s Jonathan Stephens intends to be among those cheering Nick on.

“The race day atmosphere is always an electric one, and having a vested interest in seeing Nick drive makes it even more exciting. Surrenden Invest is proud to be a young, aspiring company sponsoring a young, aspiring driver – there’s a real synergy there, and we wish Nick every success for the coming season.”

Jonathan Stephens, Managing Director, Surrenden Invest

For further details email us at: or call us on: 0203 3726 499

Surrenden Invest partners with David Phillips to offer residents and property investors a superior living experience

As the UK’s residential property market matures, leading developers and agents are forming new partnerships in order to drive up standards for both residents and investors.

“Investors used to be happy to purchase unfurnished apartments, but we’re seeing a maturation of investor interest. Properties that make being an investor/landlord easier have the edge over those that don’t. At the same time, those properties need to offer something exciting and fresh to tenants to make them stand out. These considerations are driving developers to innovate not just in the design and facilities of their buildings, but also in terms of the additional extras.”

Jonathan Stephens, Managing Director, Surrenden Invest
Furnishings are the perfect example. There was a time, not so long ago, when investing in a property meant buying an apartment, then arranging how to furnish it in order to appeal to tenants while not spending any more than was necessary. Now, increasingly, developers are connecting with professional furniture companies in order to offer investors (and tenants) a more complete package.
The Tannery in Liverpool is one such example. Apartments within the new luxury development are available with David Phillips furniture packages. The bespoke furniture packs have been created to suit the particular style, location and aspirational image of The Tannery, setting a tone that perfectly suits the property and those who will live there.

“As the UK’s largest and most design-led furniture provider, David Phillips are absolutely delighted to be working in partnership with Surrenden Invest. We have put together an exclusive furniture collection completely bespoke to The Tannery development. We are tasked with not only providing your furniture but augmenting your environment and lifestyle through award-winning services, honed through nearly two decades of experience.”

Alistair Dickson, Head of Residential Sales (North), David Phillips
It’s a winning situation for all concerned. The property is less hassle for investors who can purchase turnkey, ready-to-rent properties meanwhile residents can enjoy living in a professionally styled home from the moment they move in.
As the rental market comes of age, the nature of furniture packs is also changing. Standards are being raised, with packages including far more than just the essentials. Framed prints, mirrors, luxury linens and kitchen packs are all becoming increasingly common.
Contemporary residents are often sold on the idea of the show home at new build developments and an increasing number of them expect to enjoy a similar standard of furnishing in their own apartment.

“The days of landlords furnishing their rental apartments with odd bits of furniture that they no longer have a use for in their main residence are long gone. Investors and tenants are both seeking a complete package now – and that includes premium furniture and soft furnishings. That’s why partnerships with companies such as David Phillips have become essential for those developers who are looking to remain at the forefront of the market.”

Jonathan Stephens, Managing Director, Surrenden Invest

For further details email us at: or call us on: 0203 3726 499

Waterside living standards reach new heights in Manchester, while rents rise across the North West

Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures have revealed that annual rental prices in the North West of England increased by 1.3% in the year to September 2017. However, rents aren’t the only thing going up in the North West – accommodation standards have rocketed in recent years, as highlighted by the freshly completed Wilburn Basin development.

The development offers an unrivalled standard of accommodation. It has elevated waterside living in Manchester to the next level. The quality of the interiors is second to none and we’re delighted to see such a contemporary and stylish property added to the rental offering in this exciting city market.
We recently spoke with Richard Lynch of Renaker Build Limited, the developers of Wilburn Basin. He has shared why it was important to provide such standout accommodation for Manchester’s rental market.

Wilburn Basin is clearly finished to a very high specification. Why did you feel that such internal quality was important for this development?

We take a pride in the quality of finish in each apartment within all of our schemes. Wilburn Basin was no exception. We do tend to see improvements in a chronological fashion with each development and it was important to us to ensure Wilburn Basin was a step up from recently completed developments we have in the city.

What is the overall vision for the interior of Wilburn Basin?

We wanted to create a space where residents would want to spend time. There are too many developments out there where the entrance is no more than a lift lobby and in many cases the space is simply uninviting. We try to create a space which gives residents a sense of arrival and which sets us apart from other developers.

A great deal of attention has been paid to the communal areas. Why did you feel this was important to focus on?

Wilburn Basin benefits from a fairly extensive footprint, spanning three acres of river frontage. The communal areas have been carefully planned to create a feeling of open space and usable green areas to assist in creating a community.

Why did you choose certain brands within the apartments?

Specifying high-end brands such as V& B and Porcelanosa means we can deliver a better specified and finished product at a better price than our competitors.

Are there any other noteworthy brands featured in the development?

Certainly! We’ve included Bosch appliances, Hansgrohe brassware and provision for BT, Sky, Virgin and Hyperoptic. Whilst many other features and fittings within the apartments and communal areas aren’t necessarily from recognised brands, all have been chosen for their quality and aesthetics.

Did you appoint an interior designer to style and dress the development?

Vivo Interiors (local to Manchester) dressed both the show apartment and communal areas. Planting within the blocks was undertaken by Urban Planters. Meanwhile the lighting scheme – a feature of the main reception area and the entrance lobby to Block A – was designed by Troup Bywaters & Anders.

Do you feel that the standards expected today, in terms of interior design and finish, is higher today?

The level expected from owners has certainly risen. Features such as cinema rooms, fitness centres and business centres are now expected by both investors and tenants.

How much value do you feel the interiors of Wilburn Basin add to the development?

The interior finish of Wilburn Basin, both in terms of the apartment interiors and the communal areas, certainly falls into the luxury category. This adds significant value to the scheme.

For further details email us at: or call us on: 0203 3726 499

What a week for marvellous Manchester

It’s been a spectacularly good week for the city of Manchester, in North West England. Firstly, The Sunday Times flagged Manchester up as being one of the best places to live in the UK. Zeroing in on the city’s Chorlton area, The Sunday Times cited its villagey feel, funky atmosphere, greenspace and excellent schools as offering the complete package.

Meanwhile, Colliers International has ranked Manchester tenth in its European Cities of Influence report. In terms of mid-sized cities with a population of two to five million people, Manchester was ranked fourth in Europe. Manchester’s strong talent pool (fed by its top tier universities), workforce catchment area, employer costs, employee quality of life and economic output all contributed to the ranking.
Nor is that all. Your Move’s latest house price data shows a rise in house prices in the North West of England, despite falls in many other areas of the country. While house prices in London fell by 2.6% in the year to January 2018, they rose by 4.3% in Manchester.
This outstandingly positive picture sets the scene for the launch of a superb new development – Middlewood Plaza. The exciting new development is just ten minutes’ walk from Manchester city centre, providing residents with access to the amenities of both Manchester and Salford. Featuring impressive, split-height blocks of six and nine storeys, the development is home to 125 beautifully designed homes, complemented by an extensive roof terrace with views over the city.
Designed to meet the diverse housing needs of Manchester’s urban professionals, Middlewood Plaza offers a mix of apartments, townhouses and duplexes. Secure underground parking and cycle bays are available for residents’ use. In addition, the properties feature smart technology, including whole-house ventilation and sprinkler system protection. The homes are also all fully wheelchair accessible.
Middlewood Plaza is set in the heart of Manchester’s Middlewood Locks regeneration zone. The £1 billion regeneration project encompasses a gym, hotel, bars, restaurants, nursery and medical centre, as well as residential accommodation.
For investors, Middlewood Plaza presents an opportunity to be part of one of Manchester’s most exciting regeneration areas, packed with potential for capital growth. A leading city both in domestic terms and on the international stage, Manchester has incredible potential. Investors in Middlewood Plaza can be part of harnessing that potential.

For further details email us at: or call us on: 0203 3726 499

Newcastle’s tallest building set to break onto the global stage

With a youthful population, thriving economy and dynamic business scene, Newcastle is fast becoming one of the UK’s top locations for those seeking economic success. With a fast-moving housing market, it’s also a welcoming environment for those seeking financial success through buy-to-let investment. Now, the launch of a new development has ensured that those individuals have a more luxurious choice of investment than has previously been seen in the city.

Hadrian’s Tower will provide 162 apartments, spread across 27 storeys. The development is on track to become Newcastle’s tallest building and is already attracting investors from around the world. Indeed, such is its significance that it will be presented at this year’s MIPIM in Cannes (the most significant occasion for the property industry each year).
With a £40 million development and construction price tag, no expense has been spared when it comes to Hadrian’s Tower. The building is located in the heart of Newcastle, adjacent to Science Central and the university hospitals, as well as a range of leisure pursuits. Its stunningly contemporary homes and superb communal areas are sure to appeal to young professionals and their families, as well as post-graduate students (of which there is a steady supply thanks to the rising popularity of Newcastle’s universities).
In addition to sleek, elegant apartments, Hadrian’s Tower will provide a Sky Lounge and café for relaxing and socialising, touchdown meeting points for those looking to blend their home and working lives and superior support services, from a 24-hour concierge to cleaning and maintenance services.
In many ways, Hadrian’s Tower will showcase the best of modern development. Every single apartment will be wheelchair accessible. Meanwhile, whole-house ventilation and a sprinkler system protection are provided in every home.
Hadrian’s Tower marks a significant step in Newcastle’s development. Extensive regeneration works at St James’ Boulevard and Science Central Business School Zone have laid the foundations for the future of the city. Now, a new high rise city district is building on that success, including through the world-class apartments at Hadrian’s Tower. Built by Newcastle-based The High Street Group, Hadrian’s Tower will be a flagship Newcastle development for years to come.

For further details email us at: or call us on: 0203 3726 499

Liverpool flagged as UK’s top buy to let hotspot

Liverpool flagged as UK’s top buy to let hotspot, as new development brings world-class living standards to the North West.

New data from Private Finance has revealed that Liverpool (along with Nottingham) is the best city in the UK for buy to let property yields. Already a favourite with property investors thanks to its rising prices and extensive regeneration work, the North Western city has now been flagged as enjoying average net rental yields of 6.2%
The Private Finance report highlights the importance of choosing investments carefully in order to overcome recent changes to the tax structure for buy to let landlords. As such, all eyes will be on Liverpool’s property market during 2018, as investors seek to maximise their returns in the UK’s most profitable city.
The potential for capital gains in Liverpool also looks promising for 2018, based on the city’s performance over the past year. House prices have risen by 5.51% according to Zoopla data, while over the last five years they have increased by 28.34%.
Driving part of this growth is the extensive regeneration work being undertaken, with developments like Ten Streets and the Jennifer Project creating popular new districts for those looking to rent and buy in Liverpool.
Thrown into the heart of this hotbed of economic opportunity is a stunning new development known as The Tannery. Taking its name – and the inspiration for its creative exterior – from the former Tannery on the site of which it is being built, the development will provide 106 studio apartments, 136 one-bedroom apartments and 139 two-bedroom apartments, all designed to offer world-class living facilities and raise the bar for Liverpool’s rental accommodation.
Set in the premium L3 postcode area, just to the north of the city centre, The Tannery will be home not only to bright, spacious apartments, but also a high-end gym, a communal courtyard and roof garden for socialising and entertaining and secure underground parking with lift access. Just a mile from Liverpool ONE, the apartments provide superb access to the city’s amenities, as well as offering modern homes as part of a thermally efficient development.
These iconic residences offer a quality of living that is synonymous with the world’s greatest capital cities, heralding a new era for Liverpool’s property market. The Tannery has been designed to allow investors to maximize their returns by investing in the most exciting new development in the UK’s most profitable city. Demand is expected to be spectacular.

For further details email us at: or call us on: 0203 3726 499

Buy-to-let expert shares 5 predictions for UK property in 2018

With 2018 now upon us, anyone thinking about investing in bricks and mortar wants to know what’s going to happen over the next 12 months. Will prices continue to edge up, stabilise or dip down? Where is best to invest? Does buy-to-let still stack up? Jonathan Stephens, Founder and MD of expert property investment agency, Surrenden Invest, which has helped 700 clients invest in UK bricks and mortar over the past 2 years, shares his 5 predictions for the UK property market in 2018.

1. Manchester will remain robust

Manchester will remain robust with city centre fringe redevelopment schemes offering the best opportunities. Manchester is tipped for rapid growth over the years ahead. Its population is projected to expand by 20% by 2025, reaching 625,000 residents, according to city analysts. Such a rapid turnaround in population size is never easy for city planners to address and Manchester is estimated to be around 40,000 homes behind the number it needs, with demand continuing to put pressure on supply. Pressure on city centre land remains incredibly high thus it is to the outer fringes of the city that tenants are moving to, taking advantage of more affordable housing. With property prices significantly less than city centre sites, this is where buy-to-let investors need to be looking when it comes to Manchester.

2. Birmingham will continue to be one of the strongest buy-to-let markets in the country

Birmingham will continue to be one of the strongest buy-to-let markets in the country. Often overlooked, the UK’s second city (by population), Birmingham, has a great deal to tempt buy-to-let investors in 2018. Birmingham’s youthful population and the huge number of graduates that the city produces every year has created an excellent environment for entrepreneurship. One part of the city in particular, Digbeth, has become a hotspot for new businesses and cultural activities, attracting large number of young professional residents. We will see Digbeth, just 10 minutes from New Street Station booming with gentrification this year and so now is the time to buy before prices soar.

3. Liverpool will continue to offer low price points and strong growth potential

Liverpool will continue to offer low price points and strong growth potential. 10 years on from being announced as the European Capital of Culture, the city has gone from strength to strength. Liverpool has a thriving, service-based economy, which was worth £29.5 billion in 2015 and the city is leading the UK’s Northern Powerhouse region in terms of its overall GVA growth and its growth of GVA per capita. Economic output will continue to improve with the likes of Cunard Shipping bringing a large share of their operation back to where it all began in 2018. A growing population and plenty of blossoming talent, backed by strong economic credentials and a buoyant housing market make for an ideal environment for opportunity, boosting Liverpool up the list of cities to watch most closely in the UK over the coming year.

4. London will remain slow

London will remain slow with some prominent city centre locations seeing prices drop. Anyone who lives in London, or indeed reads the papers, will know that the capital slowed in 2017 and whilst the long-term outlook for one of the world’s top real estate markets remains optimistic, the impact of slowing prices will be felt especially if we see further interest rate increases. However undervalued pockets will continue to offer irresistible opportunities especially locations set to benefit from Crossrail due to open later this year.

5. Newcastle will be the dark horse of 2018

Newcastle will be the dark horse of 2018. Newcastle and its twin city, Gateshead, has been quietly waiting in the wings, growing in population and economically, over the last couple of years. 2018 will be the north-east city’s time to shine as a higher than average economic activity rate, rising property prices and significant local investment mean that Newcastle is becoming something of a favourite with businesses and investors alike. Surrenden Invest has taken up options on several sites and predict big things for buy-to-let investors in this hidden gem.

For further details email us at: or call us on: 0203 3726 499

The role of mortgages in the UK buy to let sector

The UK buy to let mortgage market has changed significantly in recent years. As such, the Surrenden Invest team has consulted with mortgage expert Anthony Rose of LDNfinance for an up-to-date view of where the market is at, from interest rates to typical terms.

Given the changes to the UK mortgage market in recent years, is it still possible to get a buy to let mortgage?

The buy to let market has undoubtedly changed in recent years but it has been boosted by a large number of specialist lenders entering the market and existing lenders improving their offering. We have seen a sizeable shift towards clients purchasing using a Limited Company structure rather than in a personal name and mortgage lenders have been quick to respond to this with new offerings.

Who are the major providers offering B2L mortgages today?

Where buy to let finance has become very specialist, there is a greater spread of lenders than there used to be. However, the main lenders, by market share, will be BM Solutions, TMW, Barclays, NatWest and Santander.

What interest rates are they offering?

Buy to let rates are as competitive as they have ever been. Clients with large deposits can potentially access interest rates starting at 1.5%. In more specialist situations, such as non-standard properties or non-UK residents, rates can go up to around 6%.

What do the typical terms range from/to?

Most buy to let buyers historically preferred two-year terms due to the flexibility these offer. However, many lenders are now offering higher loan sizes if a five-year option is taken and this is proving very popular with clients as they can reduce the level of deposit they need to put down on the property purchase, which can either free up funds or may mean they can purchase more than one buy to let at a time.

What is the typical deposit required to be put down from the buyer?

For the right buyer and right property there are options with a 20% deposit, but most mainstream lenders require a 25% deposit. A lot of clients are opting to put down a higher deposit, of up to 40%, to secure more favourable terms.

Can you talk us through the new lending criteria that have been introduced and what they mean for investors looking to secure a mortgage?

Changes to buy to let taxation have meant lenders now use more stringent calculations to determine how much they will lend versus a given rent. For many clients, this means they will need to increase their deposit. However, with an increase in competition, especially from specialist providers, an experienced broker should be able to offer the right solution.

What other eligibility criteria do buyers need to meet?

Generally, buy to let lenders prefer people to have a personal income outside of rent received, as well as being the owner of their own main residence. Despite that, there are options available for first time buyers, non-UK nationals and most other situations with the correctly chosen lender.

What should potential investors budget in terms of fees/charges when taking a mortgage?

Fees can differ greatly depending on the lender and type of mortgage product chosen. A mortgage adviser should always consider all fees when recommending a product. The main consideration for property investors when considering fees in the current climate is the increased Stamp Duty levy for additional properties.

What impact has the first base rate rise in a decade had on the market?

As buy to let rates are so competitive, there has been no noticeable difference in the products on offer. In some cases, property investors have brought forward their plans to purchase another buy to let as they believe the market is strengthening.

Why do you feel that obtaining a mortgage to invest in UK buy to let remains a good choice?

With mortgage rates still near historical lows, the cost of funding a buy to let with a mortgage, compared to buying it fully with cash, is the preferred option for most investors.

What would be your top tip for any investor looking to secure a buy to let mortgage?

The most important thing is to engage with an experienced broker as early in the process as possible to secure the right funding. The recent criteria and taxation changes have meant buyers need to explore all options before making their offer.

For further details email us at: or call us on: 0203 3726 499

Investors move in on Trafford as new Kinetic development launches in Manchester

The launch of the exciting new Kinetic development in Manchester’s Old Trafford area is drawing attention from investors around the world. Recognised across the globe as the home of one of England’s most respected football clubs, Old Trafford has a strong sporting heritage. However, there’s much more to the area than its athletic credentials alone.

This bustling part of Manchester is home to a highly educated urban population that is looking to get the best out of life in the city. 48% of adult residents in the area hold a degree or equivalent qualification (compared with 33% across the North West on average) and it is home to 13,000 businesses. Entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well, and is backed up by a fantastically modern infrastructure, with 99.9% superfast broadband coverage.
The new Kinetic development is no exception, providing residents with hyperoptic fibre for superfast connectivity. The 48 one and two-bedroom apartments exude contemporary urban style. They have been developed with professional tenants in mind, as well as providing a convenient accommodation option for the 6,500-strong student campus being opened just a stone’s throw from Kinetic in 2019.
The area is well connected, offering access to Manchester city centre, Media City, the University Quarter and White City Retail Park. Old Trafford Tram and Trafford Bar Tram are less than 10 minutes’ walk away, while Piccadilly Station can be reached by car in 12 minutes. Manchester Airport is a 14-minute drive.
In terms of the wider city, pwc’s just-published Emerging Trends in Real Estate Europe 2018 report has highlighted Manchester as the UK’s top city investment prospect. The recognition is great news for investors looking at being a part of the city’s future. Many are particularly interested in the Trafford area as a result of its mixed offering of residential, commercial and leisure opportunities.
In addition, the latest figures from Zoopla show that the M16 postcode area, in which Kinetic is based, is ahead of the rest of the city in terms of its rising property values. Over the past five years, properties in the M16 area have increased in value by 31.56%, pushing ahead of the city-wide average of 30.64%.
With well-established investment credentials, Manchester has long been a favourite with both domestic and international property investors. Now, Kinetic has become the latest exciting development to provide investors with the chance to be part of the city’s bright future.

For further details email us at: or call us on: 0203 3726 499