Moving House: Is a city, town or village best for you?


If you’re looking to buy a new home, you may be considering relocating, whether that’s a few miles from where you currently live, or further afield. If you’re ready for a new adventure and want a new pace of life, you could be pondering whether a city, town or village is your dream location.

Here, we give you some guidance to make the process a little easier for you.

Is city life right for you?

City life


If you enjoy the hustle and bustle, and plenty of options for shopping and eating out, city life could be for you. There’ll be highly rated restaurants and bars, plus the transport links should be excellent. Consider that if you want to live in the city centre, you’ll most likely be restricted to an apartment, but despite the smaller living space, you’ll have museums, art galleries and theatres on your doorstep.

Cities are brimming with culture, and you’ll be able to socialise with people from all around the world. You should be able to advance your career, as there are many more job opportunities in big cities.


If you’re green fingered, it may not be the best idea to move to a city at this point in time, as you might miss not being able to tend your own garden. If you’re not sure, moving to a smaller city can be an easier transition if you’ve previously lived in a village or small town, so assess your options and look at small cities in your area; whether that’s Truro in Cornwall, Winchester in Hampshire or Chester in Cheshire.

Perhaps you’re suited to village life?

Village life

If you’re ready to escape and relax, wanting to spend your days out in the countryside, walking or cycling, you may want to move to a picturesque village or town. There are villages that are extremely small, with few amenities, but others are more bustling with much more going on.

Homes in villages in London’s commuter belt are the most expensive in the UK. Other villages where homes regularly sell for over a million pounds include Bowdon and Hale in Greater Manchester, Alderley Edge in Cheshire and Shiplake in Oxfordshire[1]. More modest areas include North Lincolnshire and Ribble Valley, which are not only ranked as affordable places to live, but also where residents are happiest[2].

If you have a growing family, making sure the village you choose is in the catchment area for good schools will be important, and if you or your partner has to commute to work, you need to be realistic and decide whether you want to leave early and get home later every day.  The countryside also provides great opportunities for families to enjoy time outdoors, whether that’s playing sports together, walking or exploring the greenery of local parks. Even better if you’ve got a pet dog!

One of the benefits of living in a village is that there is often a good community spirit, and you may get to know your neighbours quicker than you would do in a town. While there might not be as much to do socially, as there would be in a city or town, there will still be clubs and societies you can join.

Would you be happier living in a medium-sized town?

Town life

If you’re moving from a city or village to a town, you should be able to buy a much bigger property than you had previously, as house prices are generally lower. This is ideal if you have a growing family or are planning to start one. Towns today, with out-of-town centres, also offer more entertainment and shopping areas than they did previously. Towns located near to cities will have excellent transport links and you should find you have better job opportunities than if you lived in a village in a rural area.

There will be plenty of restaurants and pubs to visit, although the pace of life won’t be as fast as it would be if you lived in the middle of a city. If you like getting out and about in the countryside, there should be some good parks and outdoor spaces to explore nearby.

Towns are often the best compromise if you’re moving with a partner who wants to live in the city and you want to live in a village, or vice versa. There are big ‘satellite’ towns that benefit from a cities’ amenities, such as Sale in Cheshire which is close to Manchester, and smaller towns that are very similar to villages such as Lichfield near Birmingham, so it’s important you consider which would suit your lifestyle best.