The Sunday Times
Wednesday February 20, 2019
Zoopla

As the rail ticket price hike kicks in, here are the most cost-effective places for commuters to live.

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  • Colchester in Essex has topped the list as the best value commuter hotspot for London.

    According to Zoopla’s Commuters Affordability Index, Britain’s oldest recorded town offers the cheapest combined annual mortgage and season ticket costs of £13,288, with a 49-minute commute into Liverpool Street station.

    At the other end of the scale, St Albans, Hertfordshire, was named the priciest commuter town, with combined costs of £21,405. However, travelling into London takes just 21 minutes.

    For sale: Five-bedroom semi-detached house on Creffield Road, Colchester, for £825,000

    Top 10 best value commuter towns into London (ranked by cost)

    Rank

    Town

    Average annual mortgage costs

    Season ticket cost 2019

    Combined annual mortgage and season ticket cost

    Travel time

    1. Colchester £9,036 £4,252 £13,288 49 minutes
    2. Huntingdon £8,871 £4,496 £13,367 57 mins
    3. Peterborough £6,550 £7,068 £13,618 49 mins
    4. Manningtree £8,141 £5,612 £13,753 59 mins
    5. Bedford £9,369 £4,568 £13,937 47 mins
    6. Milton Keynes £9,436 £4,600 £14,036 44 mins
    7. Sittingbourne £9,276 £4,836 £14,112 59 mins
    8. Luton £9,337 £4,988 £14,325 32 mins
    9. Chatham £9,319 £5,240 £14,559 43 mins
    10. Folkestone £9,155 £5,424 £14,579 57 mins

    Commuting into Bristol

    Moving westwards, Wales dominates the rankings for Bristol, with two of the three top commuter towns into the city located there. Cwmbran comes in first place, with modest combined costs of £7,535 and a commute time of 58 minutes.

    But for those prioritising convenience over cost, Bath Spa offers a commute time of just 14 minutes but with a price premium of £13,536.

    For sale: Four-bedroom detached house in Henllys, Cwmbran, for £399,950

    Top 5 best value commuter towns into Bristol (ranked by cost)

    Rank

    Town

    Average annual mortgage costs

    Season ticket cost 2019

    Combined annual mortgage and season ticket cost

    Travel time

    1. Cwmbran £4,839 £2,696 £7,535 58 mins
    2. Newport (Gwent) £5,373 £3,020 £8,393 35 mins
    3. Taunton £7,241 £3,104 £10,345 37 mins
    4. Bridgwater £7,370 £3,156 £10,526 55 mins
    5.  Gloucester £6,804 £3,848 £10,652 54 mins

    Commuting into Birmingham

    Heading up to Birmingham, Wolverhampton offers the best value (£5,946) with a commute time of just 17 minutes, compared with the county town of Warwick, which is the costliest at £14,122 and a 24-minute travel time.

    For sale: Seven-bedroom semi-detached house in Tettenhall, Wolverhampton, for £340,000

    Top 5  best value commuter towns into Birmingham (ranked by cost)

    Rank

    Town

    Average annual mortgage costs

    Season ticket cost 2019

    Combined annual mortgage and season ticket cost

    Travel time

    1. Wolverhampton £5,101 £845 £5,946 16 mins
    2. Rowley Regis £5,379 £680 £6,059 19 mins
    3. Stoke-On-Trent £4,006 £3,184 £7,190 49 mins
    4. Telford Central £5,446 £1,876 £7,322 36 mins
    5. Derby £5,451 £3,416 £8,867 37 mins

    Commuting into Manchester

    Burnley takes the top spot, with costs of £4,923 and a 45-minute travel time. Conversely, Altrincham is the most expensive place to commute from, costing £10,519 and a 27-minute travel time.

    For sale: Seven-bedroom house on Billington Road, Burnley, for £600,000

    Top 5  best value commuter towns into Manchester (ranked by cost)

    Rank

    Town

    Average annual mortgage costs

    Season ticket cost 2019

    Combined annual mortgage and season ticket cost

    Travel time

    1. Burnley £3,047 £1,876 £4,923 45 mins
    2. Rochdale £4,396 £1,192 £5,588 15 mins
    3. Accrington £3,720 £1,876 £5,596 57 mins
    4. Blackburn £3,959 £1,876 £5,835 50 mins
    5. St Helens £4,164 £2,032 £6,196 49 mins

    Commuting into Edinburgh

    Commuters in Motherwell are the least hit in the pocket, with combined mortgage and travel costs of £5,639 and a 48-minute commute. And coastal Delmany is the priciest commuter hotspot at £10,366, but comes with a convenient travel time of 20 minutes.

    For sale: Four-bedroom detached house on Jerviston Street, Motherwell, for £350,000

    Top 5  best value commuter towns into Edinburgh (ranked by cost)

    Rank

    Town

    Average annual mortgage costs

    Season ticket cost 2019

    Combined annual mortgage and season ticket cost

    Travel time

    1. Motherwell £3,763 £1,876 £5,639 48 mins
    2. Falkirk £4,110 £1,876 £5,986 30 mins
    3. Carluke £4,250 £1,876 £6,126 54 mins
    4. Bathgate £5,155 £1,192 £6,347 28 mins
    5. Interkeithing £4,679 £2,032 £6,711 27 mins

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