How far do people move?
Whilst almost everyone has joked about picking up and moving away from it all, the median distance moved in the UK in 2018 was surprisingly only 9 miles. This distance has remained unchanged for 5 years, with 51% of moves in 2018 measuring under 10 miles, and nearly two thirds under 20 miles. This suggests that as much as we may dream of pastures new, most of us stay where we have family, a community, a job or a sense of security.
Changes in moving distance by region
It’s not only a case of how far people are moving in the UK, but where they are moving from that has an impact. Those moving home in the North East and Northern Ireland had the shortest median moving distance in the UK – only 6 miles.
The North East also had the largest proportion of people moving less than 5 miles – a whopping 42% of moves in that region. Comparatively, in the East of England, only 31% of moves are within 5 miles.
This could be to do with affordability, with those upsizing to bigger properties trying to find something appropriate in the same area. There are multiple reasons people move, and without further research we couldn’t say why, but with work commitments, family, perhaps an eagerness to keep children in the same schools, it’s more interesting as to why these regional changes exist. Is it a case of personal preference, affordability or availability?
Overall, people moving in Northern England and Northern Ireland don’t move as far, along with those in London (they move around 8 miles). People moving from Southern England, Scotland and Wales tend to move further.
And for those who did want to start over somewhere new and were willing to move a fair distance, 17% of moves this year were over 100 miles. The region with the largest percentage of moves over 100 miles was the South West. With the sheer distance across Cornwall, Devon and the coast, it may be that movers were heading for sunnier climes.
Have a look at our moving distance map to see how far people are moving.
How far would you move for your next home? Are you staying local or heading off to something completely different?