Do commuters hold the key to a great investment in a bleak property market?

As Brexit rumbles on, this headline in the Times raised a few eyebrows, no doubt:

In a refreshing read, it seems the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund have dismissed Brexit doubters by pledging to increase its exposure to British companies, investing in property and bonds regardless of the outcome of the current Brexit debacle.

The Norwegian fund, or to call it by it’s official name, The Government Pension Fund Global, is one of the biggest foreign investors in Britain and their view is that, as a nation, Britain will emerge stronger from Brexit. Their chief executive, Yngve Slyngstad, said “we foresee that over time our investments in the UK will increase”. The fund which totals £740 billion, has already invested £62 billion in the UK this year and has a 30 year projection for return. Brexit supporters will no doubt be euphoric at this kind of support, while naysayers will avoid promotion of a positive landscape post Brexit.

A £62 billion budget is just a touch more than most of the investors I speak to have, but that doesn’t detract from the fact that people are still investing in property in the UK. It’s easy to get lost in the fog of a squabbling government, conflicting financials and horror headlines but a bit of sensible thinking might help – at least in terms of property investment. So let’s break it down. The facts are that

  1. we have a rapidly rising population


2. we have an increasing shortage of affordable housing

Most property investors I speak to come armed with a minimum of a 5 year plan. Some with 10, 15 or 20 years clearly plotted. Maybe not as long as the 30 years of the Norwegian Fund but regardless of the length of your investment plan, those two key factors mean that if you make a good investment choice, you can still make a healthy return. So, the question is, where is the ideal spot to invest and maximise your return?

Well the answer definitely isn’t our capital city. Zoopla’s UK Cities House Price index report has just published an abysmal house price inflation of 0.2% for inner London. But (and it’s a big but) that makes commuting to London even more appealing…..which leads us to commuter towns. A perfectly timed tonic to all this poor London data, is the sparkly new report that brings fantastic news reinforcing all my support of the Medway towns as a great investment location, Totally Money’s Best Commuter Hotspots. They’ve gathered data on 116 commuter belt towns, taking average house prices, train journey length, season ticket averages and ONS data on resident satisfaction, to calculate the best towns to live in and commute from. Happily, Rochester and Chatham both appear with great satisfaction scores and relatively low average house prices.

Our neighbouring town of Gravesend secured a spot in the top 5 – which is excellent news. All positive reinforcement that the region is on the rise.

If you are looking for properties to invest in and would like some advice on specific locations to seek or avoid, get in touch. My advice is free and my knowledge is plentiful. Call me on 07944 726676, email me at, or message me on LinkedIn or Facebook.