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LEEDS-The residential sector here is taking off according to a new report. Estate agent Chesterton has announced that the property market in Yorkshire’s most prosperous city is becoming increasingly sophisticated.

Nigel Tapp, associate in the firm’s Leeds office, says, ‘There is now a clear distinction emerging between the characteristics of four distinct sectors: city centre, good suburban, traditional terraced and student housing. For the residential investor rents in Leeds will now begin to grow.’

For Leeds city centre the demand from busy professionals to live as well as work in the city has prompted many more new build and conversion projects with 2,960 units either currently under construction or in the planning pipeline, adding to the 1,250 already completed. There are also plans to develop a residential element over the West Yorkshire Playhouse, which could create a new cultural quarter in the city, especially if the proposed development for the BBC goes ahead in St Peter’s Square.

However, only 350 new units will be coming to the market over the next year, many in high profile developments, which will help fuel demand from both owner occupiers and investors and, in turn, drive prices upwards. Andrew Wells, director of residential investment and development at Chesterton says, ‘Leeds has attracted national investment interest for some time now and there will be some investors who wished they had taken the plunge 18 to 24 months ago. The good news is, we think the residential investment market still has some way to run.

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