Even within the same region of England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, you will find that different cities or towns have their own micro-economies, their own job markets, and their own cultural norms.
This can make it feel quite difficult to know what to expect when you are looking to move to a new area, and means that doing some research before you choose where you'd like to live is a must.
To help you find the best places to live in the UK, uSwitch perform a regular study of quality of life across the statistical regions of the United Kingdom, known as uSwitch's Best Places to Live in The UK Quality of Life Index.
The latest version of the study was done using 2015 data, and this means it enables us to show, based on official statistics for all different aspects of general life, where the best quality of life in the UK can be found at the moment.
As well as using our 2015 index to create a new league table of the best and worst places to live, we have also compared these results with our 2013 quality of life study, allowing us to show you which of the 138 statistical regions in the UK have improved in that time (and which have dropped places on the table).
Outer Belfast in Northern Ireland is one of the NUTS 3 statistical regions of the UK that has lost places since our 2013 study. It has fallen 33 places to go from 61 to 94 on our list.
Northern Ireland on the whole performed badly in the 2015 quality of life index, with three of its regions ending up in the bottom ten.
Here are some of the statistics for Outer Belfast:
The employment rates in Outer Belfast are mediocre, with 70% of the population in employment and 44% working normal full time hours of 35 to 45 hours per week.
Another 23% work more than 45 hours per week on a regular basis in Outer Belfast, which is considered too many for a good work life balance.
Incomes are on the low side of average for the people of Outer Belfast, with the 2015 average gross weekly income per person at £459.60.
The price of buying a house in Outer Belfast is low by overall UK standards, at £111,979. Rent, on the other hand, is much higher than average at £83 per week.
The life expectancy from birth in Outer Belfast is in line with the average for the UK as a whole, at 83 for women and 79 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.
Outer Belfast has a high cost of living, with the average weekly grocery shop costing £63. This is more than in inner London. The cost of car insurance is high too, at £514.80, though petrol is cheaper than average at 116p.
Other Important Factors
Outer Belfast does not have especially good mobile phone coverage, with just 91% of the region getting signal. The average 2015 broadband speeds in Outer Belfast are reasonably good though, at 26.8Mbps.
See how your broadband speeds stack up against your neighbours by trying out our broadband speed test.
Due to some negatives like high rent and cost of living compared to fairly low incomes, Outer Belfast is in the bottom portion of our table for UK quality of life.
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 .