Even just within the UK, there is a huge amount of difference between what you can expect to earn, how much things cost, and the services available between one area and another, and if you are looking to move, it pays to do some research and choose a place that fits with your priorities.
In order to see which places in the UK currently offer the best quality of life, uSwitch's Best Places to Live in The UK Quality of Life Index 2015 has analysed all kinds of data, comparing the 138 NUTS 3 statistical regions of the United Kingdom to rank them in order from best to worst.
Having already done this study once in 2013, we can also use this new ranking to see how each region has improved or declined in the time between the two analyses.
Worcestershire in the West Midlands narrowly missed a spot in the top 30, coming in at 31st – which still puts it in the top 25% of the country. It has also improved since 2013, when it was ranked 44th.
Here are some of the stats we used for Worcestershire:
Worcestershire has good employment rates, with 78% of its inhabitants in work at the time of the study. It also has a good work life balance, with only 22% of people needing to work over 45 hours a week. This is thought to be a sign of good quality of life.
Incomes are not especially high, with the average for a person in Worcestershire as a gross weekly amount being £463.70.
Houses are fairly expensive, but do not break the £200k mark on average, with the average house in this statistical region selling in 2015 for £191,142.50.
Life expectancy is in line with averages for England, however one interesting thing is that in most statistical regions the difference in life expectancy between men and women is four years, but here it is only three, with men living to 80 and women 83.
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 on the low side of average, at £54 for the average household's weekly food shop. It is bad news for drivers, however, with car insurance high at an average of £540.80, and petrol slightly high too at 118p in 2015.
Even though, the insurance premiums are high, there are certain steps you can take to find the best car insurance deals for you.
Other Important Factors
Worcestershire ranks fairly low for broadband speeds, with the average a serviceable, but not great 19.8Mbps. Its mobile signal coverage is high, at 94%, but still lower than most other Midlands statistical regions.
Use our broadband postcode checker to see which deals and what speeds are on offer in your area.
Worcestershire is in the top quarter of the table and has shown improvement since 2013, however fairly high house prices and fairly low average incomes may be something working age people looking to buy may want to consider when looking at this 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 .