In relation to the quality of life you can get, we definitely have a significant level of diversity all around the different parts of England, Wales, Scotland and NI.
Whether you are interested in how your current home compares to the rest of the UK for quality of life, or are looking to move and want to be sure to pick somewhere where you'll be able to live comfortably, uSwitch's Best Places to Live in The UK Quality of Life Index is an insightful study that shows how the 138 different statistical regions of the UK compare for overall quality of life right now.
By analysing a range of data from official national sources like the ONS, we have been able to create an index of quality of life that has enabled us to rank the NUTS 3 regions of the UK from best to worst as places to live in 2015.
We are also able to compare this new 'league table' of the best places to live with a similar piece of research we did back in 2013 so that we can see how each region has either improved or declined over the last two years for general quality of life.
The data we used included an array of factors most people would agree have a significant effect on quality of life, from financial things like average incomes and the cost of the weekly grocery shop, through to other things like broadband speeds, classroom sizes and the availability of mobile phone network signal.
Swansea, the second largest city in Wales, is a statistical region that has shown marked improvement on the uSwitch index since 2013, going from 109th place to a mid table position at 72 in 2015. This is an improvement of 37 places.
Here are some statistics for Swansea:
Swansea has reasonably low employment rates, with 69% of its inhabitants employed overall, and 46% employed full time.
Incomes are fairly average in Swansea, with the 2015 gross weekly income per person at £466. Disposable income is below average, however, at just £14,503 per year for the average Swansea household.
House prices in the city of Swansea are low, though could be considered moderate for the West Wales and the Valleys region at an average of £130,000 in 2015.
People in Swansea have a slightly below average life expectancy 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.
The cost of living is fairly average by overall UK standards though quite high for this region of Wales. A weekly grocery shop for a Swansea household in 2015 costs £55. Petrol is above average, however, at 120p.
Other Important Factors
Swansea's statistics for technology are fairly good, with around 94% of the region receiving mobile phone signal, and above average (though not exceptional) broadband speeds of 27.7Mbps.
Use our broadband postcode checker to see which deals and what speeds are on offer in your area.
Most of Swansea's stats fall in the region of the UK averages, which is probably why comparatively, it sits in the middle 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.
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 .