Now is the ultimate time to invest in the West Sussex market town of Bognor Regis, according to Sussex-based property lettings and management specialist PS&B.
With the housing market in full-swing again, and busier than ever since lockdown restrictions have eased, the company has set out the case for a place which has frequently been denigrated as an outdated, run-down ghost town which long ago saw its best days.
It has often unfairly been landed with the unkind nickname of God’s waiting room (thanks to its large pensioner population) and the butt of many jokes, but now attempts are being made to transform the reputation of the South Coast town which is best known for its Butlin’s and its old-fashioned seaside charm.
Here, with the help of PS&B, we outline why Bognor Regis might be attractive to investors looking for a post-lockdown bargain.
Regeneration, regeneration, regeneration
With over £1 billion of investment already secured or in the pipeline, the regeneration plans for Bognor Regis are well underway.
The proposals combine new roads, schools, industry, homes and a rapidly expanding leisure base, as well as a new Business Improvement District (BID). “Property prices in the town are only set to go one way…up!” PS&B says.
A few years ago, Bognor Regis’s reputation was that buyers only moved to the area to retire due to its flat coastal location and abundance of bungalows, PS&B claim. Now, though, with thousands of properties already being built, a further 5,000-plus in the pipeline, and a number of great property restoration opportunities (perfect for those interested in the buy-to-let market), ‘the town offers something to suit all budgets and requirements’.
This ranges from beach-front homes, exclusive private estates and large detached properties to modest semi-detached houses, flats, and, of course, bungalows.
Thanks to the regeneration plans, the high street is fast becoming popular with independent retailers who are moving into the area, PS&B says. To complement this, there are a multitude of commercial letting opportunities available.
“While a great boost for the local economy and for the community, it’s not just retail opportunities that are available,” PS&B says. “With strong economic growth potential, a convenient location with easy access to London and international airports and ports, coupled with an abundance of sites and premises available, it is ideal for business to locate to.”
The firm says Bognor Regis is fast developing a reputation for innovation and high-quality. In the last few years alone, companies such as Rolls Royce have established a new state-of-the-art logistics centre in the town.
Furthermore, the 70-hectare Enterprise Bognor Regis – a premier commercial development site - has the potential to accommodate 150 businesses and provide 4,000 jobs in the near future.
A thriving workplace environment
For digital and creative business owners, freelancers and people wanting to develop new business ideas, now is a great time to move to Bognor Regis, PS&B says.
“With more people working from home, and office space in surrounding Sussex towns coming in at a premium price, West Sussex County Council has recently invested £1million to convert part of the railway station into a creative office space,” the company adds.
“Aptly named The Track, it is set to open soon and offers shared and collaborative workspace for up to 150 people where businesses and freelancers can work, share ideas, network and access business support and training.”
A lifestyle offering
Providing an average 1,902 hours of sunshine each year, Bognor Regis has long been awarded Britain’s sunniest spot to live.
“It offers a lifestyle choice to envy thanks to the South Downs National Park on your doorstep, secluded beaches, and an award-winning seafront with a Grade II-listed pier, and green-flag parks,” PS&B explains.
Michael Barber, director of PS&B, said: “There is no doubt that Bognor Regis is changing rapidly and for savvy buyers who get-in-there early and invest smartly in the town’s property market, whether as a direct homebuyer, a buy-to-let investment, or a commercial letting to expand a business, they will certainly reap the financial benefits.”
He added: “PS&B has been established in Sussex for almost 200 years and as such we really do know the county and its investment opportunities. We’ve seen how town regeneration projects affect the market and industry research has revealed that homes near regeneration zones attract an average 3.6% more price growth per year than properties in the wider local authority area. In summary, if you take the plunge and invest in Bognor Regis now, you won’t be disappointed.”