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What’s the Cheapest Place to Live In the UK?

Written by, Bojana Atanasovska

Updated September, 6, 2022

Have you daydreamed about moving to a much cheaper place where you could afford a better life for yourself and your family?

No need to look for lower property prices in remote countries when the UK has plenty of inexpensive yet beautiful locations to choose from.

To find the cheapest place to live in the UK, keep reading below!

9 Most Affordable Places to Live in the UK

The following list includes towns of varying sizes that offer both an excellent quality of life and a low cost of living, but also considering the average wage in the UK. So, if you are looking for the cheapest city to live in the UK, start below.

Durham, North East England

Located 32 m above sea level in the northeast of England, Durham is a small cathedral city with a pleasant climate: the average daily temperature lies around 7°C. Moreover, while winter lasts between December and February,  the average summer temperature averages at 15°C.

Durham is arguably the cheapest and safest place to live in the UK for students as it has excellent higher education institutions and other types of schools, and the living, eating, and entertainment costs are very reasonable.

The average monthly rent for a 1BHK apartment ranges between £360 (around the outskirts) to £650 (in the centre). Additionally, all your transport costs are covered with a £55 monthly pass.

Note: The average salary in Durham is around £27,000/year.

Middlesbrough, North Yorkshire

In recent years, Middlesbrough has become a trendy area for UK investors as it has been transformed with modern homes, schools, and leisure options, as well as plenty of new job openings.

Home to one of the biggest UK sports teams: Middlesbrough F.C., this large North Yorkshire town is located in the heart of the Tees Valley within a short drive from the seaside. The town is also steeped in history and culture, offering various festivals, artistic happenings, quality education, and more.

MiddleMiddlesbrough’s average property value is roughly £131,000 which is way lower than the UK’s average property value of £245,443. The living expenses are around £580 per person without calculating rent. So if you decide to rent a one-bedroom near the centre there, expect to pay 80% less than what you would in London, coming at around £450/month.

Note: The average salary in Middlesbrough is around £26,000/year.

Sandwell, West Midlands

With its average house prices of about £143,000, Sandwell is one of the most desirable locations to move to. Meaning, you don’t have to look to the North to find the cheapest places to live in the UK, as you can comfortably study, work, and live right in the Midlands.

On the other hand, students, and those who want to rent an apartment for different reasons, can expect to pay around £500 per month. In any case, Sandwell is an excellent location for everyone as it is located in the heart of England with easy access to the entire island.

If and when you move there, in addition to cheap access to every living essential you might require, you would be close to some of the most picturesque vistas the country has to offer, from the Malvern Hills and the Severn Valley to the Welsh Mountains. It’s also close to Birmingham which is lovely to visit during the Christmas season.

Note: The average salary in Sandwell is close to £31,000/year.

Redcar and Cleveland, North Yorkshire

This northern borough is another beautiful and affordable location that perfectly balances work and home life. Like neighbouring Middlesbrough, the costs of living and enjoying yourself are low for a wide range of lifestyles.

If you have landed one of the excellent job opportunities here, check out Redcar’s fabulous beaches and the natural beauty of the North York Moors Park as the ultimate destination for every nature lover. 

However, even if you are into a different kind of leisure and entertainment, you can find it at the borough’s farmers’ markets, sports and events programmes, and more. The cities of York, Durham, and Newcastle are all an hour away, too, to offer anything else you might need.

In the Cleveland postcode area, newly built homes cost around £240,000, whereas the average price for established properties is about £151,000.

Note: The average salary in Redcar and Cleveland is about £29,300/year.

Rotherham, South Yorkshire

You might have heard of Rotherham as the home of the Chuckle Brothers and a prominent listing in the Domesday Book, but recently, this minster town has also been making headlines as one of the cheapest cities to live in England.

For instance, as of 2020, Rotherham’s average house cost was reported around £141,000. At that price, you get to live in a modern city that lacks for nothing: schools for all learners, excellent connections to the rest of the country, and various leisure activities and amenities.

The Rotherham Minster, the science museum, large yearly gatherings such as Rotherham Rocks, Rotherham Buy the Seam, and the Rotherham Show are just some of the events and locations you should visit during the city’s busy yearly calendar.

Note: The average salary in Rotherham is above £35,000/year.

Bradford, West Yorkshire

Hailed as a top UK tourist destination, Bradford is also the next entry on our list of the cheapest areas to live in the UK.

The city’s natural riches and historic importance draws in countless visitors each year. So after learning you can purchase a house in the centre for around £142,000, or rent a flat for £570/month, to walk its culture-filled cobbled streets, you’ll be packing a suitcase in no time.

Thanks to its filmmaking heritage, Bradford has been one of the main locations for UK film and TV production since the beginning of cinema. Countless pieces have been filmed around its picturesque greenbelt, dales, and Ribbehead Viaduct. No wonder Bradford became the world’s first UNESCO City of Film in 2009.

In addition to enjoying the plethora of film festivals and other cultural happenings at very affordable prices, students, workers, and families in Bradford can visit a varied selection of museums and historical sites or simply spend a healthy and relaxing time in its scenic parks.

Note: The average salary in Bradford is around £31,700/year.

Doncaster, South Yorkshire

Since we are adding Doncaster to our list, another South Yorkshire town, one could see how this area is a serious contender for the cheapest county to live in the UK.

This large minster town has a rich religious history and an international airport to boot. Since it benefits from a maritime climate, Doncaster is also much more welcoming than the North of England, so you get pleasant weather at the same prices you would pay in a northern city.

All in all, Doncaster is a reasonably priced town, with an average house price of about £174,200. On the other hand, the monthly expenses without rent are around £600 per person, while the average rent for an apartment near the centre is around £500/month.

Note: The average salary in Doncaster is around £30,700/year.

Dundee, Scotland

This urbanised and culturally rich Scottish town offers a high quality of life at affordable prices and the most sunny days in a year in the entire country. In a recent study, Dundee was also revealed as the cheapest place to study and live for students in the UK.

All in all, university students moving to Dundee should expect to pay around £7,000 to £8,000 on average, including £80 for transport, £74 and £26 for food and snacks, respectively, and £46 each for utilities and entertainment.

If you are renting a flat there, expect to pay around £460 for a single bed, but if you decide to share, you would pay less, as 2-bed and 3-bed apartments cost £676 and £979, each. However, if you are resettling your family and buying a house, expect to pay over £190,000.

As a bonus, it’s easy to love Dundee as there are several hidden gems to explore. This is one of the reasons why Scotland has about 15.5 million tourists every year.

Note: The average salary in Dundee is around £26,000/year.

Belfast, Northern Ireland

Belfast is a reasonably priced city that enjoys a temperate oceanic climate with an average temperature of around 3°C, which can rise to 17°C in July. 

Renters offer 1BHK flats at around £400 in the centre and £280 outside the city. But, regardless of your location, you can easily find low-cost groceries, restaurants, and bus and metro services that link the entire city.

So what is there to do in the city that built the Titanic? If you don’t get enough enjoyment strolling through its lively historic centre, you could visit plenty of fun pubs, beautiful gardens and parks or gasp at the hundreds of murals and Victorian buildings. 

Unlike Dublin, you get less crowded streets with more authentic experiences.

Note: The average salary in Belfast is around £29,000/year.

Have You Decided Yet?

Whether you’re a student, found a new job in a new city, or you are moving your whole family, finding the best value places to live in the UK doesn’t have to be difficult. Britain is full of cities that are welcoming, culturally rich and inexpensive to live in. Just look at our list!

Frequently Asked Questions And Their Answers

Which part of the UK is the cheapest?

The north of England has some of the cheapest areas to live in the UK (with both low property costs and low living costs). For instance, you could buy a home in Yorkshire for around £25,000.

Which part of the UK has the cheapest rent?

The cheapest place to live in the UK as a renter is Belfast, with one-bedroom flats costing between £280 and £400, depending on how close to the centre they are.

Bojana is my name and writing is my game. I am a content writer from Bitola who is always interested in the latest research in almost all areas of life. I have a Bachelor’s degree in English literature and a perfectionist character, both of which help me find the most accurate data and information available. Although I have my head stuck in studies and reports most of the time, I still have a bit of free time during which I enjoy knitting and watching classic 90’s Disney movies.