North Scotland cheapest place to live in the UK
When it comes to the cost of running a home, there is a £3,000 north-south divide, according to recent research.
Households in the North of England pay £3,000 less a year on their household bills, taking into account the mortgage or rent, water and energy bills, home insurance, broadband and council tax rates, a study by MoneySuperMarket.com has revealed.
Unsurprisingly, London was identified as the most expensive place to live in the UK, with average bills standing at a whopping £11,536 per year. The South East comes a close second at £11,317.
In contrast, the North of England had average household running costs of £8,521 - with the exception of Cheshire, where household bills cost an average of £10,031. South Wales was the next cheapest area, with bills coming to £8,540.
Mortgage and rent payments are the biggest expense, with Londoners typically paying £7,164 a year. In contrast, householders in the North and in South Wales spend £4,908 and £4,452 respectively.
North Scotland is the cheapest place to live in the UK, with mortgage or rent of £5,004 and council tax at £1,421 - that's £1,253 less than in the South. However, it is the most expensive area for energy bills, with average gas and electricity bills of £1,383 per year.
When it comes to home insurance, Londoners have to splash out £280 a year, compared with the average of £186 a year in the UK as a whole.
Clare Francis, editor-in-chief at MoneySuperMarket.com, said: "Even though it comes as no surprise that London is the most expensive area in the UK to live, what is perhaps surprising is the marked differences in the bills you pay depending on whereabouts in the country you live.
"With the exception of Cheshire, anyone living or looking to move anywhere south of the Midlands will find they are being hit hardest when it comes to essential bills."