The value of a town’s upgrade to city status is one of the perceived strengths of city status and for Reading, this is not an exception. Reading town, despite being the largest town in the UK has not been conferred with city status. After three failed attempts, the town is bidding once again. Conferring city status to Reading town will have a great impact on the town’s real estate industry. Moreover, it will catapult the town’s growth posing for better and efficient services.
City status for the Reading town will attract other companies to set up business in the city. Consequently, residents will be presented with more opportunities for work, employment, and a market for goods. Public perception of Reading as a city has a powerful influence on home values. Exponential growth in property prices if Reading town becomes a city would be fuelled by growth in the number of high-income families, the relative scarcity of housing units and properties, and the fact that families with high income would be willing to out-bid the low family income for the scarce preferred houses and locations.
If Reading becomes a city, migration to the town will increase as people will seek the opportunities that corporations bring to the town. With Reading as a city, the population will grow both income and absolute number, and eventually, the proportion of people able to reside in preferred locations within the budding city will rise. The bidding to reside in low supply, high-demand areas will change the composition and class of residents in Reading with changes in the prices.
Reading city will become an economic hub and inevitably a beacon for benefits and highly skilled labor. Urbanites can work, shop, entertain themselves, and live in the suburbs around the city satisfying their desire for shorter commutes and greater walkability. The growing demand for good amenities and community-style life will attract people to apartments near the city. Demand for apartments will skyrocket, forcing increases in rents and mortgages for new buyers.
Importantly properties in the city could be very profitable in Reading, notably not all will be equal. Prospective renters in the city would value access and walkability to social amenities. Transport access and hubs within the city with high job growths will be pivotal in dictating the prices, demand, and availability of residential properties in Reading town when, or should it becomes a city.