Habitus Leeds has sold a £41 million Build to Rent (BTR) Scheme just outside the city centre to has to clients of Aberdeen Standard Investments.
The deal for Clarendon Quarter, a 324-unit residential scheme, marks the UK’s largest stabilised transaction, for institutional grade, purpose-built accommodation and the first in Leeds.
It also indicates the ‘Business as Usual’ nature of the BTR investment market, which has been a theme during the lockdown period. This has been ASI’s 3rd BTR deal since lockdown.
The scheme comprises the former St Michaels School (The Court) and a new build block (The Gardens), with a BREEAM rating of Very Good.
“As the first purpose built rental scheme in Leeds it has a strong emphasis on operational design and displays all of the investment characteristics we target – Affordability, Accessibility and Amenity,” said Ed Crockett, Head of UK Residential Investment, Aberdeen Standard Investments.
“The potential for rising unemployment is undoubtedly a challenge the sector will have to navigate and as a result our strategy has pivoted more towards the affordable end of the BTR market which shows strong risk adjusted performance as well as helping to meet the needs of the wider community. ”
Adam Burney, Partner, Residential Capital Markets at Knight Frank said: “This transaction is a continued endorsement for the BTR sector, which shows outstanding resilience in the current climate, demonstrating the ongoing demand for institutional, residential assets.
“Despite the ongoing market headwinds, occupancy and rent collection remained at high levels at Clarendon Quarter, throughout the acquisition process.”
Mike Gorman, Head of CBRE’s Northern Development and Residential team, said: “CBRE has sold £100m of build-to-rent stock into the Leeds market alone this year, signifying exciting times for the Northern residential market.”
Knight Frank advised Aberdeen Standard Investments, with JLL advising on operational matters. CBRE represented Habitus Leeds on this transaction. The scheme is managed by Fresh Property Group.