In my opinion, the best way to build wealth over the long term is to buy high-quality companies with strong balance sheets and hold on to them. With that in mind, here are two of the best UK shares I’d buy now as part of long-term diversified portfolio.
Best UK shares to buy now
The UK economy is still reeling from the coronavirus crisis. However, there’s one section of the economy that’s rebounded faster than any other — the housing market. Figures suggest the average UK home price hit a record last month as buyers rushed to make the most of the recent stamp duty cut.
Other factors are helping the market as well. Record-low interest rates, a severe undersupply of new homes, and the help-to-buy scheme are all helping push up prices.
Persimmon’s latest trading update showed just how quickly the housing market has rebounded since lockdown. The company’s sales in the seven weeks since the beginning of July were up 49% year-on-year. Forward sales are running at almost £2.5bn, against £2bn a year ago.
While company profits during the six months to the end of June slipped by 43%, the numbers above suggest the group’s outlook is bright. It’s now back to full building capacity and has restored its dividend.
However, despite this strong performance, the stock is still trading below the level at which it started the year. I think this is an excellent opportunity for long-term investors to buy into this growth story.
Over the past decade, the shares have produced a total return for investors of 26% as the company has capitalised on rising home prices and housing demand.
At this rate of return, my figures show it would take just 12 years to turn an investment of £50k into £1m. That’s why Persimmon is on my list of the best UK shares to buy today.
A great opportunity
Taylor Wimpey seems to be running behind Persimmon. The company is only operating at 80% capacity and hasn’t yet restored its dividend. But with home prices rising, and demand booming, I reckon it’s only a matter of time before the firm catches up.
Despite the positive performance in the rest of the housing market, shares in the homebuilder are still trading around 50% below their all-time high reached in the middle of February. I think this could be an excellent opportunity to acquire shares in this depressed stock while they offer a margin of safety.
It may only be a matter of time before Taylor restores its dividend, which will lead to improved investor sentiment towards the business. That could push the stock back to its 52-week high. I think the best time to buy is before the company makes this announcement.
There are risks with this approach. But by including Taylor as part of a portfolio of the best UK shares, I think investors could see substantial total returns on their investment.
Rupert Hargreaves has no position in any of the shares mentioned. The Motley Fool UK has no position in any of the shares mentioned. Views expressed on the companies mentioned in this article are those of the writer and therefore may differ from the official recommendations we make in our subscription services such as Share Advisor, Hidden Winners and Pro. Here at The Motley Fool we believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors.