Harrogate named one of the best places to live in the UK
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Its 'Love Where You Live' guide has revealed the best places to buy a property in the UK based on what buyers are now looking for in a home, following this year of lockdowns and general upheaval.
Yopa surveyed 2,000 Brits to determine what they now want in a property and then created an algorithm to rank the Top 10 places that met these criteria - with Harrogate coming ninth in the whole of the UK.
Whilst house prices, quality of local schools and low crime levels will likely always remain high on buyers’ lists of priorities, Yopa says it has determined that buyers are now placing greater emphasis on access to green spaces, job opportunities and proximity to local amenities when deciding where to live, and says this shift is a direct result of the coronavirus pandemic and resultant lockdowns.
The study analysed a number of economic and quality of life metrics - including job opportunities, access to green spaces, proximity to schools rated Good or Outstanding by Ofsted, and average local salaries, all of which ranked Harrogate in high esteem.
The top ten places to lock down a property, according to Yopa, are:
Sale, Greater Manchester
Richmond-upon-Thames, Greater London
Crawley, West Sussex
Harrogate, North Yorkshire
When asked whether the pandemic urged them to reconsider where in the country they live, 1 in 4 Brits surveyed by Yopa said ‘yes’. This increased to 1 in 3 among those who are now working from home, with commutability no longer of prime significance.
The lockdown introduced in March had many people dreaming of greener pastures, with 1 in 4 people stating that they now feel more inclined to move somewhere with greater access to green spaces and the same number of people wishing they had more garden space.
A strong sense of community is also more important to buyers than it was prior to the pandemic, as are broadband speeds - perhaps a result of the shift towards remote working.
Yopa’s Chief Property Analyst Mike Scott said: “After almost a year of upheaval in all of our personal and professional lives, many people are reconsidering where they live. Everyone will have a different set of move motivators when it comes to choosing an area in which to look for a new home, but Yopa’s recent research proves that certain factors have shot to the top of buyers’ priority lists in 2020.
“Commutabilty has become less important as the country embraces working from home, whilst proximity to green spaces is now vital as people feel cooped up in their homes. Job opportunities and salary levels are also of greater importance in a year that has been marred by furlough, redundancies and job losses.
“Deciding where to move can be difficult and time-consuming at the best of times, not least whilst things in the UK remain so up in the air. We’ve decided to take some of the stress and worry out of this with our comprehensive, easy-to-use 'Love Where You Live' guide.”