The worst cities to rent in the UK revealed – is your city on the list?

The best and worst revealed

If you are currently renting in Luton, you might want to consider a change of address. New research has declared it one of the worst cities to rent in the UK.

Related: Zoopla reveals that rents are on the rise at a record rate...but there is some good news

When it comes to finding somewhere to rent it isn't just rent prices that can make or break a city for you. New research, commissioned by Insulation Express, has looked into a number of factors to reveal the best and worst cities to rent in.

The study examined the average salary spent on rent, tenant evictions, private rented properties rate, annual rental price rises, unemployment and crime rate.

grey living room with carpet flooring and photo frames

(Image credit: Future PLC/Brett Charles)

Luton claimed the title as the worst city to rent in the UK. Just outside of London, it was found to have the highest number of private tenant evictions. The average person was also found to be paying out 41 per cent of their salary on rent.

Leicester and Reading came in second and third place. However, Manchester, which came in fourth place was found to have the highest crime rate and joint second-highest unemployment rate.

Worst cities to rent in the UK

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CityPercentage of income spent on rentEviction ratePrivate rented properties rateAnnual Rental Price RiseUnemployment rateCrime rate
1. Luton41.122.3651.53.385.3
2. Leicester33.113.5512.13.985.5
3. Reading4912.651.31.43.368.7
4. Manchester34.220.3123.21.24.2164.1
5. Newport23.322.113.31.2398.6
5. Nottingham30.411.736.11.93.994.2
5. Belfast31.2N/A862.22.3144.33
6. Preston26.61234.61.24.2102.3
7. Wolverhampton26.116.751.51.34.589.9
7. Northampton35.421.

Overall, Plymouth claimed the crown as the best city for renters. Not only were renters in the city paying out less than a third of their salary on rent, but it had the lowest unemployment rate and crime rate.

white living room with wooden flooring and dining table

(Image credit: Future PLC/Colin Poole)

Edinburgh closely followed Plymouth as the best city for renters. The Scottish capital was revealed to have a bounty of private rented properties to choose from. Although those living in Edinburgh are shelling out a pretty penny of rent, spending 39 per cent of their income, it had one of the lowest rent price increases.

Best cities to rent in the UK

Swipe to scroll horizontally
CityPer cent of Income spent on rentEviction ratePrivate rented properties rateAnnual rental price riseUnemployment rateCrime rate
1. Plymouth32.08.880.41.92.859.4
2. Edinburgh38.95.7133.30.63.860.4
3. Cardiff36.27.2701.2384.7
4. Glasgow30.6N/A980.63.871.7
4. Southhampton36.611.
5. Leeds32.95.1126.41.94.3127.3
5. Swansea38.
6. London64.20.5148.91.24.3102.4
7. Derby2217.
7. Newcastle upon Tyne27.812.1106.20.56.2104.2

Rental properties in the Scottish city increased by just 0.6 per cent in the last year. It also had a low crime rate with only 60 crimes recorded per 1,000 people.

Related: Pet lovers rejoice! Proposed new tenancy rules will make it easier to rent a home with your furry friend!

Did your city land on the worst or best renter-friendly cities list?

Rebecca Knight
Deputy Editor, Digital

Rebecca Knight has been the Deputy Editor on the Ideal Home Website since 2022. She graduated with a Masters degree in magazine journalism from City, University of London in 2018, before starting her journalism career as a staff writer on women's weekly magazines. She fell into the world of homes and interiors after joining the Ideal Home website team in 2019 as a Digital Writer. In 2020 she moved into position of Homes News Editor working across Homes & Gardens, LivingEtc, Real Homes, Gardeningetc and Ideal Home covering everything from the latest viral cleaning hack to the next big interior trend.