This analysis was done using a range of the 2015 data that covers a selection of aspects people tend to feel are important for good quality of life, including rental and house prices, the cost of basic essentials, and even more modern things like the kind of broadband speeds the people living in each region are getting.
As this is the second time uSwitch have performed this analysis, with the first being using data from 2013, it is also possible to see where some regions are improving their quality of life and moving up the table, and others are moving down.
The East Lothian and Midlothian statistical region, which is in Eastern Scotland, is one that has risen dramatically since 2013, going from being the 11th worst place to live in 2013 to the 38th best in 2015 – an improvement of 90 places! Here are some of its stats:
Employment is something most people would say was very important for an area's quality of life – even if you are retired, self employed, a student or someone else who doesn't need to find employment, high employment rates tend towards more prosperity overall. In this region, there is a solid, 75% rate of employment.
Incomes are on the high side of average in the East Lothian and Midlothian statistical region, with the gross weekly income of a person here in 2015 averaging £493.70. This area also has good disposable income, at £18,860 per household for the year on average – disposable income not only improves your own quality of life but also boosts the local economy, so this is an important stat.
House prices are fairly low in East Lothian and Midlothian averaging £159,250 in 2015. Rent here, however, is exceptionally low by UK standards averaging £55 per person, per week.
Scotland has, in general, a slightly lower life expectancy than England and Wales, and this region doesn't buck that trend, with male life expectancy at 78 and female at 82.
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 are below the UK average for everything except petrol in East Lothian and Midlothian, which is around the average at 118p. A weekly grocery shop here cost an average of £55 for a household in 2015.
Other Important Factors
One area where East Lothian and Midlothian scored fairly poorly was technology. Only 85% of the region has mobile phone coverage, and broadband speeds are below average at 13.6Mbps.
Use our broadband postcode checker to see which deals and what speeds are on offer in your area.
As you can see, this region has many positives, and just a few negatives, which is why it has flown up the table since 2013.
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 .