The most expensive cities in the UK

It’s no secret that the cost of living can vary greatly across the UK, with the north of England often denoted as the more affordable region of the country. But, just how much do you need per month in each city to live comfortably, and what are the small ways you can save, that can have a big impact?


It’s no surprise that London is top of the list for most expensive cities in the UK. A global economic power, the cost of living is high, just over £7,000 per calendar month high according to a recent study by SilverDoor Apartments. Renting takes up a large proportion of that, with the average rent costing just under £3,000 per month, while the average home costs just under £500,000 – a staggering amount for first-time buyers looking to get on the property ladder. However, Londoners tend to earn on average more than £10,000 compared with people in other cities. And when you consider London has some of the world’s most famous sites, it almost seems like a fair compromise.


Another capital to make the list is the desirable, historical, and hilly Edinburgh. Often considered to be one of the most beautiful cities in the world, it will also cost you a fair bit to live there. Rental prices average around £1,800pcm, however, the average house price is almost half of the English capital at around £256,000. Boasting the highest percentage of professionals in the UK, the average salary is £30,000, making the cost of living just over £5,000 per month. To save on rental costs, some people rent a small apartment and put the items that are not used frequently to a storage unit in Edinburgh.


While we may like to be beside the seaside it appears most of us can only visit. Beating even London in the house prices stakes, Bournemouth’s houses are 8.9 times higher than the average income (London is a mere 8.5). The town’s coastal location, pretty buildings, and warm climate has made it a popular place to live, but it comes at a price. The average cost per month to live by the seaside is around £3,800, with the average salary around £26,000. 


If you think things are cheaper in the north, you’ll want to avoid Leeds. If, however, you’re looking for a cosmopolitan city, with a booming economy, and the best of both country and city life – you’ll want to get to Yorkshire pretty swiftly. While the average home costs just under £200,000, buying now could be a sound investment for the future, as the council is cultivating a vision for a ‘24-hour European city’. While it may cost £3,000 to live here per month (over double its neighbouring city of Bradford at £1,300pcm), London and Edinburgh are only a three-hour train journey away, with Manchester, Liverpool and Birmingham all within easy reach as well. 

Whilst living in expensive areas can make saving money harder, with careful budgeting it is possible to make small savings, that can add up in the long-run. 

  1. Ditch the gym membership and work out at home or in the park
  2. Cancel subscriptions to Now TV, Amazon, and Netflix
  3. Shop in charity shops, you’ll often find high-street and high-end clothes for more than half the price
  4. Host dinner parties instead of heading out for dinner
  5. Cut the caffeine and costs of your morning Starbucks

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