Bath takes top spot for second successive year in MoneySuperMarket’s annual Family Living Index
Bristol is the least family friendly city, with London again near the bottom of the list
MoneySuperMarket reveals how to manage your finances in preparation for buying a home
MoneySuperMarket, the UK’s leading price comparison site, today reveals that Bath is officially the best location to raise a family – taking the top spot for the second year in a row.
MoneySuperMarket’s annual Family Living Index, now in its third year, ranks 35 UK cities based on six key factors (local school rankings, access to green space, likelihood of burglary, house prices, job opportunities and average salary) to help parents find the city that best matches their family requirements.
Bath retains its title as the UK’s best place to raise a family, thanks to a high number of job opportunities and schools rated ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted per capita. Wolverhampton is the second most desirable city to live in, moving up one place from last year, followed by the north east heartlands of Newcastle and Sunderland. Manchester again features in the top five, but moves down a place from fourth last year.
At the other end of the scale, Bristol has overtaken London to become this year’s least family friendly city, due to a 33% rise in contents theft and a decline in ‘outstanding’-rated schools. Despite having the highest average income and level of disposable income, London continues to find itself near the bottom of the list due to high average house prices (£478,749).
Top five family friendly cities:
|City||2018 rank||2019 rank||Reason|
|Bath||1st||1st||Retains top spot due to an increase in income|
|Wolverhampton||3rd||2nd||Similar results from last year, but benefits from other locations’ declining scores|
|Newcastle||2nd||3rd||Drops one place due to an increase in contents theft, despite having the most ‘outstanding’-rated schools per capita|
|Sunderland||6th||4th||Rises thanks to improved income metrics|
|Manchester||4th||5th||Drops one place due to a fall in income|
Least family friendly cities:
|City||2018 rank||2019 rank||Reason|
|Bristol||33rd||35th||Falls into last position due to a rise in contents theft rate and high house prices|
|London||35th||34th||Places second to last in the rankings due to high house prices, despite having the highest income scores|
|Leicester||32nd||33rd||Drops one place due to a decrease in average income|
|Peterborough||29th||32nd||Drops three places because it has the fewest ‘outstanding’-rated schools in the country|
|Edinburgh||27th||31st||Drops four places due to an increase in contents theft rate claims|
The biggest climber this year is Newry, with the Northern Irish city jumping 10 places to 12th in the rankings due to an increase in disposable income and a high number of ‘outstanding’-rated schools per capita. Stoke, this year’s most affordable place to buy a home, Chester, Leeds and Brighton all climb seven places in the rankings.
Oxford sees the biggest drop, falling 18 places since last year to 30th in the rankings, due to its high contents theft rate, and a decreasing number of ‘outstanding’-rated schools. Cardiff also drops 14 places to 22nd, with a weakened position in almost every category, most notably in contents theft rate.
Further research reveals that two thirds (67%) of Brits believe they have seen a change to their quality of life in the last five years, with health (37%), a change in household bills (27%), moving to a new house (22%) and an increase in salary (21%) ranking as the top contributing factors. Other factors such as Brexit (8%), the local area changing (10%) and having to support an elderly family member (5%) also impacted their quality of life1.
Tom Flack, editor-in-chief at MoneySuperMarket, commented: “If you’re thinking of buying a home, it’s worth looking at the bigger picture and taking things such as local amenities, job opportunities and green spaces into consideration. If you have young children, take a look at the schools and the catchment area – many people will pick the area they live in based on this alone.
“When buying a property, it’s important to sort out the family finances so you can make the most of your money – and that includes purchases such as life insurance. If you have dependents, taking out a policy would provide financial support to your family if you were to pass away, helping them to clear outstanding debts and meet living expenses. Taking out life insurance will give you peace of mind, knowing that your family is protected financially in a worst case scenario.”
Head to MoneySuperMarket to see the full Family Living Index.