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Housing development sprawls near farmland near Luton

Luton is the 93rd best place to live in the UK 2015

The United Kingdom is a place of enormous diversity, which is one of the things that makes it great, but also makes it difficult to decide when you are looking to move where you are going to get the quality of life you are looking for.

Every one of the UK's cities and regions has a different local economy and job market, and the levels of convenience people who live in different parts of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland experience are vastly different too.

In order to help get a clearer picture of quality of life across the UK, we have created uSwitch's Best Places to Live in The UK Quality of Life Index.

This is a study of a wide range of official statistics from sources like the ONS relating to things like jobs, incomes, house prices and cost of living – as well as other non-financial aspects of life – across all of the 138 statistical regions of the UK. Using our findings, we are able to create a kind of league table of the UK's cities and regions ordered from best to worst for overall quality of life.

Luton in the East of England is a place whose statistics have improved since the previous uSwitch study of quality of life in 2013, rising up from 116th on our list to 93rd in 2015. Here are some of the statistics for Luton that were used in our study:

Employment

Luton has an employment rate that is lower than average with only 66% of its people in work. Full time employment rates, however, are higher than average at 48%.

Income

Incomes in Luton are not especially low with the average gross weekly income for Luton individuals in 2015 at £486.20. Household annual disposable income in Luton is low, however, at £13,337.

House Prices

House prices in Luton are moderate by UK standards overall at an average of £168k. This is, however, low for the East of England region. Rent in Luton is high, at £79 per person, per week.

Life Expectancy

The average life expectancy for both men and women is slightly below average for England in Luton. Male life expectancy here is 78, and female life expectancy is 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

The cost of an average household food shop is above average in Luton, costing £60 in 2015. Car insurance is also costly in the Luton statistical region at £525.20, though petrol is average at 117p.

Other Important Factors

Luton performs exceptionally well when it comes to the technology factors that are important for modern life. It has 99% coverage from mobile phone networks, and its average broadband speeds are 32.3Mbps – among the highest in the UK.

See how your broadband speeds stack up against your neighbours by trying out our broadband speed test.

The UK is a place with lots of diversity, and most places have both positive and negative aspects. While Luton benefits from excellent technological services and low house prices for the region it is in, it suffers from low employment and low incomes, as well as a high cost of living, and this is why it falls in the lower half of uSwitch's Best Places to Live in The UK Quality of Life Index results.

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

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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 .