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Heart of Harrow masterplan sees regeneration funding pouring into London’s hottest urban village
March 16, 2015Article by Charlotte Ashton
When it comes to regeneration schemes, Harrow has set its sights high – and been justly rewarded for doing so! The Greater London Authority (GLA) has just announced that Harrow Council will receive £31.3 million of funding in order to regenerate and develop its community.
Game changing funding
Ray Withers, Chief Executive of specialist property investment company Property Frontiers, comments,
“Funding at this level can be a real game changer for an area and Harrow looks set to put the money to good use. As well as new homes, the funds will be directed into two new primary schools, two new town squares, infrastructure improvements and the enhancement of leisure facilities such as sports pitches.”
The GLA grant forms part of the ambitious, £1.75 billion Heart of Harrow masterplan, which the council has developed in order to address the area’s chronic shortage of housing. It is estimated to generate some 500 jobs in the area, putting additional pressure on Harrow’s housing.
Harrow’s housing need is so great that it is one of nine London boroughs to have been named by Mayor Boris Johnson as a Housing Zone, with regeneration work set to fast track the number of new homes being built.
“Harrow’s well developed plans will add thousands of homes to the area over the coming years,” continues Withers, “But the area really needs to address this issue in the short term as well. Demand for decent quality rental accommodation in Harrow is extremely strong and buy-to-let investors who are able to buy into the area now should see some excellent returns.”
Carnegie House, for example, offers a select group of investors the chance to invest in studio and one bedroom residential apartments aimed at young professional tenants. Gross yields of over 5% are available, with ROCE up to 7.5% if financing. Prices range from £210,000 to £320,000. It is particularly well located for those looking to commute into London, being just 275 metres from Harrow on the Hill station, with London Marylebone just 12 minutes away.
With regeneration funding set to drive up Harrow’s appeal even further, as well as the planned Crossrail extension to the area, many investors are seeing now as the perfect time to add a Harrow property to their portfolio, in anticipation of capital growth as well as healthy rental income.
The Mayor’s Outer London Fund, as well as the GLA, certainly seems to see the area’s potential. The fund has granted £472,000, and subsequently £1.8 million to Harrow for improvements to its town centre The funding has seen streets redesigned, along with a host of improvements to pavements, lighting, signage, benches and plants.
All in all, it looks like 2015 and beyond are going to see marked changes on the face of Harrow’s offering, driving up demand for the area and ensuring that those who invest at the right time reap the rewards of doing so.