There are so many differences among the places you could live in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland that it can be very hard to know what to expect in different regions when you are looking to move.
Luckily, uSwitch can help, with uSwitch's Best Places to Live in The UK Quality of Life Index – an insightful ranking of the UK's 138 statistical regions based on an index of general quality of life, which we have derived from a wide range of recent, official data relating to different aspects of quality of life and standard of living.
Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot in the West Wales and the Valleys region of Wales is one of the regions in our study that performed less well using 2015 data than it did the last time we did uSwitch's Best Places to Live in The UK Quality of Life Index back in 2013 – going down 18 places in our rankings from 96 to 114.
Here are some of the officially sourced stats that were used for this region of Wales in uSwitch's 2015 Best Places to Live in The UK Quality of Life Index:
Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot has fairly poor overall employment rates, with 69% of people living in Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot in 2015 having a job.
47% of the population of Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot were working normal full time hours of 35-45 hours a week, though, which is above average and a more important stat if you are concerned with finding a full time job. 23% on top of that were working 45 plus hours per week in Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot, which is considered a sign of poor work life balance and therefore lesser quality of life.
Incomes are significantly above average in Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot with the gross weekly income of the average person in this part of Wales in 2015 at £511.70.
The price of buying a house in Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot is low at £116k. Rent is higher than house prices might suggest though, at £76 per week.
The average life expectancy from birth in Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot is below overall averages and among the lowest on our table, at 81 for women and 77 for men.
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.
Food costs are average for the UK in Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot with the average household weekly grocery shop in 2015 costing £55.
Other Important Factors
Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot does not have very good mobile phone coverage with just 82% of the region able to get signal. The average 2015 broadband speeds in Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot are mediocre as well, at 20.35Mbps.
Like anywhere, Bridgend and Neath Port Talbot has its pros and cons. With decent incomes and low house prices, it is let down by unimpressive technological infrastructure, very low life expectancies, and below average overall employment.
Use our broadband postcode checker to see which deals and what speeds are on offer in your area.
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.
Place to Live 2015 — Where did your region rank?
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 .