Birmingham is a city with over a million inhabitants that contains an array of job opportunities, exciting shops, restaurants, cafés, places to go out, and good quality schools for families. Therefore, it is no surprise that the city is attractive to rental tenants. 

At CIA, we are a landlord insurance brokerage that works with some of the best providers in the business. Are you after landlord insurance in Birmingham? We are a team of specialists that have you covered here at CIA Landlords. Our team has carried out research to help tell you where’s the best place to own a buy-to-let in Birmingham. 

Which places in Birmingham did we focus on and why?

Birmingham is a big city, so, why have we only decided to look at certain neighbourhoods to discuss the best place to own a buy-to-let in the city? Some tenants will prefer living in the hustle and bustle of the city centre, and others will prefer leafier areas. Therefore, we thought it would be a good idea to cover both inner city and more suburban areas in our research into the best place to own a buy-to-let in Birmingham. 

Moseley, Harborne, and Bournville are all suburbs to the south of the city that are known popular choices for renters. Likewise, Sutton Coldfield is a green suburb to the north of the city known for its green spaces, parks, and welcoming high streets.

Average cost of purchasing buy-to-lets in Birmingham

Firstly, we thought it would be sensible to look at average house prices for different sizes of property. We chose to focus on this because the purchase cost of the property vs. the rental income landlords earn is a key determiner of rental yields in the long-term. High average house prices and low average rental fees can cause landlords to lose out financially.

However, on the plus side, if you intend to sell your property further down the line to make a profit, having a high purchase price could be beneficial for you.

Carry on reading to learn more about the average price of buy-to-let houses in the different neighbourhoods of Birmingham we focused our research on. 

Semi-detached houses are cheapest to buy in Bournville

Image of buildings on Bournville street.

The average cost of semi-detached houses out of the Birmingham areas we looked at was the cheapest in Bournville, at £308,953. This idyllic suburb has great train links to the city centre, beautiful green spaces to explore, lovely shops on Bournville Green, and a scrumptious chocolate factory on top. So, if you own a semi-detached buy-to-let house in Bournville, you will have no problem letting it out; tenants will be queuing up. It could be a clever investment. 

Prices for a semi-detached home were a fair bit higher in the popular area of Edgbaston (home to Edgbaston Cricket Ground!), at £431,093 on average. Semi-detached houses in Birmingham city centre can fetch as much as £588,250 on average. 

Ranking (cheapest-most expensive) Birmingham neighbourhood Average price of semi-detached houses
1 Bournville £308,953
2 Selly Oak £310,564
3 Harborne £337,012
4 Moseley £405,901
5 Edgbaston £431,093
6 City Centre £588,250


Detached buy-to-lets are cheapest to purchase in Selly Oak and Bournville

Selly Oak is an area that students and families love to live in. It is on the doorstep of the university and has lots of open parks, supermarkets, and ace restaurants. Our research found that the average price of detached houses was lowest in Selly Oak. Are you a first-time landlord? Why not start off with purchasing a buy-to-let in Selly Oak? The average price of a detached house in Selly Oak from September 2022-2023 was £474,402. 

Bournville was the second most affordable area for detached houses, where they sell for an average of £491,134. In contrast, on the other end of the price scale, detached homes in Edgbaston go for an average price of £784,816. Nonetheless, Edgbaston is a top area to own a property. 

Ranking (cheapest-most expensive) Birmingham neighbourhood Average price of detached houses
1 Selly Oak £474,402
2 Bournville £491,134
3 Moseley £605,831
4 Harborne £672,356
5 City Centre £717,833
6 Edgbaston £784,816


Terraced buy-to-lets are cheapest to purchase in the city centre

Are you looking to become a HMO landlord of a property with three or more occupants from different households? Perhaps you want to have student tenants? Well, buying a terraced buy-to-let property could suit you just fine. 

Our research found that terraced houses were in fact cheapest to buy in the city centre of Birmingham, at £266,362 on average. Therefore, you may also want to consider the benefits of being a landlord in the city centre. Some tenants will love being in the thick of it and having all the fun and activities Birmingham city centre has to offer right on their doorstep.

Prices were most expensive for terraced houses in Moseley and Edgbaston, again, both fantastic areas of the city. 

Ranking (cheapest-most expensive to buy) Birmingham neighbourhood Average price of terraced houses
1 City Centre £266,362
2 Bournville £270,244
3 Selly Oak £271,498
4 Harborne £273,877
5 Moseley £278,247
6 Edgbaston £304,062


Flats are cheapest in Bournville

Would you rather have fewer repairs and maintenance issues to worry about? In that case, you may want to purchase a flat as your buy-to-let property.  

Our research found Bournville to be the cheapest option, where the average price of flats was £137,862. But a flat in Edgbaston will cost you £211,689 on average, and £221,249 in the city centre. 

Ranking (cheapest-most expensive to buy) Birmingham neighbourhood Average price of flats
1 Bournville £137,862
2 Selly Oak £155,400
3 Moseley £155,487
4 Harborne £183,763
5 Edgbaston £211,689
6 City Centre £221,249


Yearly rental income 

A significant part of figuring out whether a buy-to-let investment will be worth it is assessing the yearly rental income you can reasonably expect to receive. Remember, expenses such as property maintenance for wear and tear, landlord insurance coverage, and paying council tax for any student tenants will inevitably eat into your rental income a bit. 

The highest average annual rental income is in the city centre and Selly Oak 

Flats Birmingham city centre.

Birmingham city centre is home to the Bullring shopping centre, the de luxe mailbox complex, the stunning Birmingham Central Library, the NIA, the Symphony Hall, quirky canals, and many unmissable bars and restaurants. So, with all these exciting things going on nearby, it may not surprise you that the highest average annual income you can expect is in the city centre, at £21,864 per year.

Selly Oak finished just behind the city centre, with an average annual rent income of £21,564 for properties in the area. 

Ranking (highest-lowest) Birmingham neighbourhood Average annual rental income from properties in the area
1 City Centre £21,864
2 Selly Oak £21,564
3 Edgbaston £18,672
4 Harborne £17,112
5 Bournville £17,052
6 Moseley £16,200


Local green space 

Having access to green space is a key factor which a lot of renters prioritise. Can they find somewhere that’s in a city with plenty of greenery nearby? Thereby, when looking to invest in a buy-to-let in Birmingham, you should consider the amount of green space locally. 

Moseley has the highest provision of green space per person

Green space can be sought after and scarce in any major industrial city. Fun fact, the Moseley Bog nature reserve was the playground of the famous Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit author JRR Tolkien. In our research, Moseley turned out to be the area of Birmingham with the highest provision of green space, with 47.62 square metres of green space per person. The average in the West Midlands as a county is 30.21 sqm of green space per person. 

Ranking (Highest-lowest) Birmingham neighbourhood Provision of green space per person (sqm)
1 Moseley 47.62
2 Edgbaston 21.73
3 Bournville 18.05
4 Selly Oak 18.05
5 Harborne 10.83
6 City Centre 3.37


Bournville and Selly Oak are the best places to own a buy-to-let in Birmingham 

Our research ultimately found Bournville and Selly Oak to be the joint top best places to own a buy-to-let property in Birmingham. Why so? Well, a big part of it is tenants willing to pay for the privilege and convenience of living in two vibrant and well located areas of the second city, as Bournville and Selly Oak are. 

Moseley finished closely behind in third place, and there’s no denying it is also a good area to get a buy-to-let property in.

Overall ranking Best Birmingham neighbourhoods to own a buy-to-let
1 Bournville
2 Selly Oak
3 Moseley
4 Harborne
5 City Centre
6 Edgbaston


We sourced data on the average purchase cost of semi detached, detached, and terraced houses, as well as flats in six different Birmingham neighbourhoods.

We then found data on the average monthly rental cost in each area by searching the relevant postcodes. We went on to multiply the figures by 12 to come up with the average yearly rental income. 

Finally, we got our hands on data from the 2023 Green Space Index, run by the Fields in Trust organisation. This data allowed us to communicate the amount of green space per person in each Birmingham neighbourhood.


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