Why buy in Bristol

Bristol is a popular area to move to for those looking to move out of London. 

It was rated in the top 10 places to live in the UK in 2017. 

The city has a nice mix of heritage and modern living, which allows you to enjoy the best of both worlds. 

Bristol has many great selling points including:

  • outdoor spaces like the Downs to Avon Gorge

  • homes that cost less than the national average

  • great transport links

  • two top universities

  • national cycle routes

  • festivals and outdoor events 

  • a popular art and cultural scene

  • great restaurants, pubs and clubs

Bristol property

Before you buy a home in a new area you may want to check what the housing market is like. 

In Bristol:

  • there were 203,490 homes in 2020

  • 53% of properties were owned by the people living in them 

  • there were 1,350 new homes built between 2019 to 2020

  • they completed 3,557 affordable homes since 2006 ¹

Bristol house prices

House prices have gone up in Bristol, especially since it was voted the best place to live in 2017. 

The average property price in Bristol in 2020 was £293,000, which is higher than the UK national average of £239,000. ⁴

But house prices in Bristol are still a lot lower than in London where the average property price was £486,000.

The cost of living in Bristol

The cost of living in Bristol is higher than most areas outside of London. But it’s still a cheaper option if you want to live a London life at a lower cost. 

The average income in Bristol is £31,900 which is similar to the national average of £30,500. But house prices are also higher.¹

It’s 29% cheaper to live in Bristol than London according to Expatistan.²

The average monthly cost of living for 1 person in Bristol is estimated at around £1,935, compared to £2,776 in London. 

The cost of living is similar in other cities in South West England. It’s estimated to be around £1,502 a month in Exeter.

Although house prices in Bristol are rising, so are average earnings, which may make it possible for you to afford the move.

Rent in Bristol

There’s high demand for rental properties in Bristol so rental prices are high.

The average rent per month in Bristol is £1,008. 

The average cost of rent in Bristol in 2020 was up 3.1%, which is double the UK average.³

29% of homes are privately rented and 18% are rented from the council or a housing association in Bristol.¹

It’s estimated that the cost of rent will continue to grow due to a higher demand for city living outside of London.

First time buyers in Bristol

The number of first time buyers in Bristol in January 2021 was up 7.6%

Although Bristol is cheaper than London, it’s still more expensive than much of the UK. So it may be harder for first time buyers with smaller savings to buy in Bristol.

The average house price for first time buyers in Bristol between February 2020 to February 2021 was £268,142.⁴ 

You may be able to find a cheaper home if you look at a different city.

If you want to buy your first home in Bristol, there are some areas that are cheaper. 

According to Zoopla data from 2019, the average house price is lower in:

  • Avonmouth at £216,242

  • Berkeley at 223,312

  • Bedminster Down at 223,342

  • Chipping Sodbury at £231,197

  • Henbury at £238,053 ⁵

Learn more in our first time buyers guide.

New builds in Bristol

New builds often cost a lot more than existing properties as they tend to be cheaper to run over time. But in Bristol the prices are similar. 

From January to November 2020 the average cost of a new build was £295,000. This is a little more than older properties, which averaged at about £292,000.⁴

Learn more about the pros and cons of new builds.

Where to live in Bristol

There are plenty of great places to live in Bristol. 

The best place to live in Bristol for you will depend on what you can afford and what type of home life you want.

See our research on top reasons for moving house.

Clifton is one of the most popular areas to live in in Bristol. 

Clifton is popular for many reasons including:

  • the Clifton Suspension Bridge over the Avon Gorge and River Avon

  • restaurants, cafes and pubs

  • independent shops

  • good transport links for commuters

The downside to Clifton’s popularity is that the area will cost you more. A 2 bed home in Clifton costs an average of £400,000. 

Rent in the area is also high with flats being popular among young professionals.

More people are looking for homes near green spaces.

If you’re looking for more green spaces, Leigh Woods could be a good option for you. 

It’s a woodland area giving you plenty of walking routes. 

Leigh Woods is further out from the centre of Bristol, so it’ll take you longer if you need to commute to the city for work. 

The area is very expensive, with a 3 bed costing around £800,000.

Southville is a good option if you’re looking to buy a home at a lower price in Bristol. 

You can get a 3 bed house for around £330,000. 

The area has gone through improvements, and there is now a nice range of independent shops, restaurants and bars.

Redland and Cotham is a good choice for families and a nice work life balance. 

The area is good for:

  • green areas and parks

  • the best schools in Bristol

  • a short commute to the city

Although it’s cheaper than Leigh Woods, it’s still quite pricey with 3 bed homes costing around £560,000.

Redcliffe is popular with students and young professionals because of its: 

  • location close to the city centre

  • job opportunities at big businesses

  • transport links

  • number of flats

As it’s close to the centre, the prices of homes and rent are quite high.

Looking at pictures

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¹ The Independent, Bristol named best place to live in the UK for 2017

² Bristol Council, Bristol Key Facts 2021

³ Expatistan, Cost of Living

⁴ Zoopla, Rental Market Report 2020

⁵ Land Registry, House Price statistics

⁶ Zoopla, Most affordable homes for first time buyers in Bristol