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Birmingham are the 35th best places to live in the UK 2015

Whether you are looking to move in the UK or are just interested to know how the place you currently live in compares with the rest of the nation, uSwitch has performed a detailed statistical analysis of all 138 UK NUTS 3 statistical regions which reveals the best and worst places to live for quality of life.

uSwitch's Best Places to Live in The UK Quality of Life Index is a metric derived from analysis of data about all different aspects of British life, such as employment rates, house prices, the cost of essentials, and even other things that are important for modern life like broadband speeds. Using this data we are able to rank the 138 statistical regions in the UK from which offers the best quality of life, to which offers the worst.

This is the second time uSwitch have done this analysis, with the first index being based on 2013 data. Now, we have repeated the analysis with 2015 data, allowing us to see where the best places to live in the UK are in 2015 as well as to analyse which areas have improved and which have declined in the past two years.

As England's second largest city, Birmingham is a statistical region on its own, and is one that has improved in statistical terms since 2013, rising up our table from 73rd place to 35th, meaning it is now in the top third of the UK for quality of life.

Here are some of Birmingham's key quality of life statistics:

Employment

For overall employment, Birmingham actually has the worst stats in the top half of the table with just 62% of its population employed. In fact, you have to go all the way down to 100th place Greater Manchester – South to find somewhere with an employment rate this low, and to 110th place Liverpool to find somewhere with lower employment.

Income

Incomes in Birmingham are on the high side of the average, with the gross weekly income of Birmingham individuals at £502.90 in 2015. Disposable income, however, is low, with the average household having just £13,575 to spend.

House Prices

House prices in Birmingham are low, especially for a major city. The average house in Birmingham in 2015 sold for £137,500. Rent, however, is above average at £76 per person, per week.

Home values in Birmingham

Life Expectancy

Life expectancy doesn't differ dramatically across the UK but Birmingham's is lower than many other UK regions at 78 for men and 82 for women.

Life expectancy is an influential factor that insurance companies use to determine life insurance premiums. You can check our advice guide on how to get a cheaper life insurance policy.

Living Costs

The cost of the weekly grocery shop for the average Birmingham household is close to average at £54. Petrol prices, however, are among the highest in the UK at 127p, and car insurance is also expensive at £540.80 so it's a bad city for motorists.

Even though, the insurance premiums are high, there are certain steps you can take to find the best car insurance deals for you.

Other Important Factors

Birmingham scores very well on technology, with 99% of the city able to receive mobile phone signal, and high broadband speeds of 28.8Mbps.

Use our broadband postcode checker to see which deals and what speeds are on offer in your area.

Birmingham has some negatives, in terms of high unemployment and low disposable income, as well as high costs for drivers. However, it scores well for services and house prices, keeping it in the top third of the table.

More to life than rankings

At uSwitch, we know that there is more to life than rankings, stats and figures, and our Qualify of Life Index merely highlights the vast differences in the experiences of people across the UK.

Whether you're living in the best city or the worst, millions of households in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland face financial struggles including rising energy bills and credit card debt. That's why it's more important than ever for households to assess their budgets, and uSwitch.com offers a great way to start.

Below you can find ways to save on everything from car insurance to mobile bills.

Compare energy

Compare broadband

Compare credit cards

Compare mortgages

Compare car insurance

Compare mobiles

Place to Live 2015 — Where did your region rank?

2015 Rank Region Rank Change from 2013
1 Edinburgh +97
2 Solihull -1
3 Hertfordshire No Change
4 Northumberland +4
5 South Lanarkshire +55
6 Berkshire +3
7 Darlington +18
8 North Lanarkshire +98
9 York +6
10 Inverclyde, East Renfrewshire & Renfrewshire +102
11 Surrey -6
12 South Nottinghamshire -8
13 Central Bedfordshire +18
14 Wirral +13
15 Outer London - South +3
16 Warwickshire -10
17 Bath & North East Somerset; North Somerset & South Gloucestershire +3
18 Hampshire -5
19 Orkney Islands +86
20 Cheshire East -8
21 Tyneside -7
22 West Cumbria +41
23 Derby +14
24 Cornwall & Isles of Scilly +42
25 East Dunbartonshire, West Dunbartonshire; Helensburgh & Lomond +59
26 North Yorkshire -24
27 Swindon -8
28 Coventry +36
29 Aberdeen City & Aberdeenshire +46
30 Calerdale & Kirklees +12
31 Worcestshire +13
32 Warrington -4
33 Outer London North & West +22
34 Leicestershire & Rutland +6
35 Birmingham +38
36 Falkirk +75
37 Sunderland -11
38 East Lothian & Midlothian +90
39 Cambridgshire -9
40 Telford & Wrekin +1
41 Hartlepool & Stockton-on-Tees +14
42 Cheshire West -26
43 Durham -19
44 Buckinghamshire -33
45 Gwynedd +81
46 Bournemouth & Poole +34
47 Bristol +25
48 Sheffield -19
49 Walsall +41
50 West Northamptonshire +11
51 Glasgow +84
52 Flintshire & Wrexham +60
53 Oxfordshire -43
54 Scottish Borders +83
55 Gloucestershire -48
56 Sefton -8
57 Staffordshire -19
58 Conwy & Denbighshire +71
59 Plymouth +30
60 Greater Manchester North -11
61 [joint] Leeds -26
61 [joint] Perth & Kinross and Sterling +41
63 Southend-on-Sea +22
64 South & West Derbyshire -44
65 Portsmouth -14
66 Dorset -23
67 Peterborough +52
68 Essex -15
69 Shropshire -33
70 Medway -19
71 West Sussex -48
72 Swansea +37
73 Bedford -27
74 Herefordshire +4
75 Outer London - North & East +8
76 North Northamptonshire +1
77 Wolverhampton +2
78 Wiltshire -44
79 West Lothian +46
80 East Derbyshire +17
81 South Ayrshire +26
82 Isle of Anglesey +6
83 Stoke-on-Trent +25
84 Inner London - East +15
85 Angus & Dundee City +46
86 Wakefield -55
87 Inner London - West +14
88 Cardiff & Vale of Glamorgan +27
89 East Riding of Yorkshire -73
90 Powys -21
91 East Merseyside -20
92 North Nottingham -5
93 Luton +23
94 Outer Belfast -33
95 Lincolnshire -45
96 East Cumbria -31
97 Milton Keynes -40
98 South West Wales -6
99 Southampton +1
100 Greater Manchester South -42
101 Leicester +21
102 Nottingham +8
103 Kent -58
104 Belfast -82
105 Norfolk -29
106 Lancashire -73
107 Lochaber, Skye & Lochalsh, Arran & Cumbrae, Argyll & Bute +29
108 Caithness & Sutherland; Ross & Cromarty +26
109 Brighton & Hove -35
110 Liverpool -16
111 Suffolk -44
112 Shetland Islands -31
113 Thurrock -22
114 Bridgend & North Port Talbot -18
115 Blackburn With Darwen -1
116 Iverness & Nairn & Moray; Badenoch & Strathspey +16
117 East Sussex -47
118 East Ayrshire & North Aryshire (Mainland) +20
119 Torbay +4
120 North & North East Lincolnshire -73
121 Monmouthshire & Newport -3
122 Barnsley, Doncaster & Rotherham -68
123 Clackmannashire & Fife +10
124 Isle of Wight -20
125 [joint] Gwent Valleys -1
125 [joint] Somerset -43
127 Dumfries &Galloway No Change
128 Sandwell -25
129 South Teesside -36
130 East of Northern Ireland -91
131 Central Valleys -10
132 Devon -46
133 Blackpool -16
134 West & South of Northern Ireland -75
135 Eilean Siar (Western Isles) -15
136 North of Northern Ireland -68
137 Kingston Upon Hull -7
138 Bradford -43

About the research

The uSwitch.com study assessed 138 local areas (NUTS3 regions) for 26 factors such as salaries, disposable household income, and the cost of essential goods including food bills, fuel costs and energy bills. The study also factored in lifestyle issues like hours of sunshine, working hours and life expectancy to ensure a full picture of the quality of life in each NUTS3 region.

For more about the study's methodology, read the full press release .