There are a lot of things to consider when you decide to clamber onto the property ladder – not least of all where you’re going to get the money from. But, above all else, you need to make sure your new house or flat is sat smack-bang in an ideal location.
Thank goodness, then, for the people behind Channel 4’s Best Place To Live, who have taken it upon themselves to find us exactly that.
And, according to the show, we all need to start looking for properties in the little known South Ribble. As in, rhymes with ‘bibble’.
It’s ok if you’ve never heard of it before; we haven’t either.
“South Ribble may not be the best known place in Britain but perhaps it deserves to be,” explained Beeny on the show.
“I’ve been really stuck by how optimistic it is for the future and how happy people are.”
It’s worth pointing out that the show didn’t just pull South Ribble’s name out of a hat; in fact, there was a very rigorous vetting process in place, as property gurus ranked towns based on factors such as affordable housing, jobs, business, wellbeing, and culture to transport.
“We’ve looked into data form liable sources like the Office of National Statistics and the census,” explained Beeny.
South Ribble scored highly across the board for all the factors, including wages and job opportunities - average house prices sit pretty at just over £157,000.
The Lancashire area also had a high rating for well-being, thanks to its good schools, transport links to Manchester and Liverpool, and friendly community of just 109,700 people (a large proportion of whom are aged 20-29).
Throw in all of that beautiful countryside on the doorstep, and you have a pretty dreamy new hotspot.
Despite all of that evidence, however, the show had a hard time persuading viewers that South Ribble is the place to be.
“Hahahahaha,” wrote one. “Why am I watching a programme saying Leyland and South Ribble is the best place to live?”
Another added: “UK’s best place to live is South Ribble. LOL.”
Clearly predicting viewer reactions, Beeny said: “I’ve worked in property all my life and I’ve learned that it’s not just about pretty high streets and well decorated interiors.
“To find the right place to live, what’s essential is planning, planning, planning. Instinct alone is never enough – because often, what we think we know about a place simply isn’t true.”
Warrington, Manchester, and Cambridge were also rated highly – although none could touch South Ribble (the more we write it, the more it starts to look like a nonsensical word made up by Roald Dahl).
Other popular areas, such as London, were not shortlisted… for obvious reasons.
“London is a great place to live, there is so much dynamism, so much going on – but you have to earn a lot to afford to live there,” the programme stated.
Images: Channel 4