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These are the best places to live in the UK for a good work-life balance

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Harvey Day
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These are the best places to live in the UK for work-life balance 2

Maintaining a healthy social life (or any sort of life for that matter) can be tricky when you’re holding down a full-time job. Long gone are the halcyon student days of sporadic work followed by extended periods of Friends re-runs, going to the pub and cheap-but-still-fun trips around Europe. 

But what if you could move to a part of the country where there was a better work-life balance? You’d do it, right?

Well, new research from Clarendon London has revealed the top 10 places in the UK that have the best work-life balance, by finding the cities that work the least number of hours on average per week.

While the standard contractual hours of work in the UK are 37.5 hours, this survey found that in fact people tend to work a few hours extra – the average working week across the UK is actually 39.1 hours long.

There are a couple of surprising entries here – and to help you decide whether you want to pack up and make a life-changing move to one of these cities, we’ve found the average rental and property prices for the areas, according to Home.co.uk and Zoopla.

These are the cities with the best work-life balance:

1. Stirling, Scotland - 37.7 hours per week

These are the best places to live in the UK for a good work-life balance

Stirling is known as the ‘Gateway to the Highlands’ and is famous for its medieval castle

Average rent: £692 pcm

Average house price: £213,286

2. Edinburgh, Scotland - 37.7 hours

These are the best places to live in the UK for a good work-life balance 1

Fun fact: The world’s only knighted penguin lives at Edinburgh Zoo

Average rent: £1,558 pcm

Average house price: £282,620

3. Swansea, Wales - 38.1 hours

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In 2016, Swansea was named the most beautiful city in the UK to live. Who knew?!

Average rent: £824 pcm

Average house price: £173,603

4. Fareham, Hampshire - 38.1 hours

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Fareham is home to medieval Titchfield Abbey. Cool if you like history…

Average rent: £866 pcm

Average house price: £321,756 

5. Brighton & Hove, East Sussex - 38.1 hours

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Brighton is famous for its large LGBT+ population and is known as the ‘unofficial gay capital of the UK’. Get yo life!

Average rent: £1,814 pcm

Average house price: £395,763

6. St Albans, Hertfordshire – 38.1 hours

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War Horse author Michael Morpurgo lives in St Albans. Very fancy!

Average rent: £1,350 pcm

Average house price: £589,247

7. Rochford, Essex – 38.1 hours

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Not much happens in Rochford. It’s near to Southend Airport though. That’s something…

Average rent: £965 pcm

Average house price: £317,985

8. Trafford, Greater Manchester – 38.1 hours

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The Trafford Centre has Europe’s largest food court

Average rent: £801 pcm

Average house price: £299,724

9. Manchester – 38.1 hours

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The atom was first split in Manchester by Ernest Rutherford in 1919

Average rent: £1,226 pcm

Average house price: £181,292

10. Horsham, West Sussex – 38.1 hours

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The first historical record of Horsham is from AD 947

Average rent: £1,334 pcm

Average house price: £453,809

The survey also looked at the average number of hours worked across the different regions of the UK. Surprisingly, Londoners actually work less than the national average with Northern Ireland coming out on top with 39.6 hours per week. Take a break once in a while Northern Ireland! Jeez!  

These are the best places to live in the UK for work-life balance 1

(Images: Grzegorz Walczak / iStock / Rex / Clarendon London)

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Harvey Day

Digital writer for Shortlist.com / @harveyday94 / harvey.day@shortlist.com

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