The UK’s best commuter towns

The UK’s best commuter towns

Commuter towns have been thrust back into buyers’ thoughts as pandemic restrictions continue to be lifted and workers start to return to the office.

But where are the UK’s best commuter towns?

We’ve looked at areas around major cities like London, Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow and Leeds to provide the definitive list of UK commuter towns…


The best commuter towns for London

The London commute can be busy, arduous and expensive.

So, these are the best commuter towns for the capital based on property prices, monthly rent, commuting distance and journey times:


1. Colchester

Just over 60 miles east of London, Colchester sits close to Essex’s border with Suffolk. But despite its distance to the capital, the town offers brilliant rail links.

A mix of Edwardian, Georgian and Victorian homes in the town are balanced by newer properties in North Colchester, close to the mainline rail station into Liverpool Street.

Average property prices in Colchester remain under £300,000 and monthly rents are below £1,000 – and those figures alone make it a top hotspot for London commuters.

Rail journey: Colchester North to London Liverpool Street

Journey time: 50 minutes

Average property price: £297,102

Average monthly rent: £856


2. Redhill

Redhill is close to Reigate in Surrey and is ideally located for commuting into London.

Just over 20 miles south of Central London, property prices in Redhill are what you might expect from the Surrey commuter belt but remain cheaper than many other comparable commuter hotspots.

Rail journey: Redhill to London Bridge

Journey time: 31 minutes

Average property price: £387,502

Average monthly rent: £1,045


3. Crawley

Crawley offers commuters easy access to London by rail, but it’s the town’s location in the heart of Sussex that also appeals to buyers and renters.

Crawley is located halfway between London and Brighton, meaning that comfortable commute is backed up good access to the south coast for those weekends away from the office.

Rail journey: Crawley to London Victoria

Journey time: 45 minutes

Average property price: £341,187

Average monthly rent: £1,042


The cheapest London commuter towns

While property prices outside of London are considerably lower than inside the M25 in most cases, the further away from the capital you go, the longer your commute is likely to be.

Here, we’ve listed three of the cheapest London commuter towns within 90 minutes of the capital by train, where property prices are under £300,000 on average and monthly rents under £1,000:


1. Ipswich

Rail journey: Ipswich to London Liverpool Street

Journey time: 72 minutes

Average property price: £274,942

Average monthly rent: £743

Search for a property in Ipswich


2. Southampton

Rail journey: Southampton Central to London Waterloo

Journey time: 80 minutes

Average property price: £227,386

Average monthly rent: £868

Search for a property in Southampton


3. Northampton

Rail journey: Northampton to London Euston

Journey time: 59 minutes

Average property price: £250,870

Average monthly rent: £793

Search for a property in Northampton


The best Kent commuter towns

Kent is one of the most popular counties for commuters and has plenty of towns offering easy access to London. Here, we’ve listed three of the best commuter towns within an hour of the capital…


1. Chatham

Rail journey: Chatham to London Victoria

Journey time: 43 minutes

Average property price: £225,498

Average monthly rent: £866

Search for a property in Chatham


2. Ashford

Rail journey: Ashford International to St Pancras International

Journey time: 38 minutes

Average property price: £329,557

Average monthly rent: £953

Search for a property in Ashford


3. Folkestone

Rail journey: Folkestone Central to St Pancras International

Journey time: 57 minutes

Average property price: £296,621

Average monthly rent: £771

Search for a property in Folkestone


The best commuter towns in Hertfordshire

Although more expensive than counties like Kent, Hertfordshire’s commuter towns are among the closest to London, with our two hotspots both within 30 minutes of the capital…


1. St Albans

Rail journey: St Albans City to St Pancras International

Journey time: 22 minutes

Average property price: £568,671

Average monthly rent: £1,214

Search for a property in St Albans


2. Welwyn Garden City

Rail journey: Welwyn Garden City to London Kings Cross

Journey time: 29 minutes

Average property price: £432,720

Average monthly rent: £1,155

Search for a property in Welwyn Garden City


The best commuter towns in Buckinghamshire

Buckinghamshire commuter towns offer the best of both worlds – easy access to London and other major cities. In fact, trains from Milton Keynes to Birmingham take just five minutes longer than services to the capital.

Our two Buckinghamshire commuter hotspots are both within an hour of London…


1. Bedford

Rail journey: Bedford to St Pancras International

Journey time: 47 minutes

Average property price: £315,386

Average monthly rent: £847

Search for a property in Bedford


2. Milton Keynes

Rail journey: Milton Keynes to London Euston

Journey time: 44 minutes

Average property price: £296,323

Average monthly rent: £990

Search for a property in Milton Keynes


The best commuter towns for Manchester

The North West is home to some of the best commuter links in the country and Manchester is surrounded by great towns.

Our top Manchester commuter towns are all within 40 minutes of the city and have an average property price below £300,000.


1. Rochdale

Rail journey: Rochdale to Manchester Piccadilly

Journey time: 15 minutes

Average property price: £147,597

Average monthly rent: £645

Search for a property in Rochdale


2. Macclesfield

Rail journey: Macclesfield to Manchester Piccadilly

Journey time: 21 minutes

Average property price: £264,484

Average monthly rent: £698

Search for a property in Macclesfield


2. Widnes

Rail journey: Widnes to Manchester Piccadilly

Journey time: 31 minutes

Average property price: £149,163

Average monthly rent: £583

Search for a property in Widnes


The best commuter towns for Glasgow

Glasgow is one of Scotland’s busiest and most vibrant cities and it’s surrounded by superb commuter towns.

All three of our top choices have average property prices below £200,000, but are less than 60 minutes from the city…


1. Bathgate

Rail journey: Bathgate to Glasgow Queen Street

Journey time: 48 minutes

Average property price: £169,752

Average monthly rent: £676

Search for a property in Bathgate


2. Paisley

Rail journey: Paisley Gilmour Street to Glasgow Central

Journey time: 10 minutes

Average property price: £130,834

Average monthly rent: £711

Search for a property in Paisley


3. Stirling

Rail journey: Stirling to Glasgow Queen Street

Journey time: 34 minutes

Average property price: £199,424

Average monthly rent: £942

Search for a property in Stirling


The best commuter towns for Leeds

Northern powerhouse Leeds is bordered by some of Yorkshire’s best towns – all offering superb commuter links into the city.

Property prices in our top-three are also affordable, averaging under £200,000, with average monthly rents of less than £700.


1. Pontefract

Rail journey: Pontefract Monkhill to Leeds

Journey time: 34 minutes

Average property price: £167,357

Average monthly rent: £581

Search for a property in Pontefract


2. Huddersfield

Rail journey: Huddersfield to Leeds

Journey time: 19 minutes

Average property price: £178,132

Average monthly rent: £608

Search for a property in Huddersfield


3. Keighley

Rail journey: Keighley to Leeds

Journey time: 28 minutes

Average property price: £139,753

Average monthly rent: £512

Search for a property in Keighley


The best commuter towns for Birmingham

The UK’s second city, Birmingham offers great employment options and an explosion of culture and diversity.

That means the towns that surround the city are hugely popular with property hunters and our top-three all offer great options for commuters…


1. Shrewsbury

Rail journey: Shrewsbury to Birmingham New Street

Journey time: 58 minutes

Average property price: £246,085

Average monthly rent: £672

Search for a property in Shrewsbury


2. Tamworth

Rail journey: Tamworth to Birmingham New Street

Journey time: 18 minutes

Average property price: £213,010

Average monthly rent: £714

Search for a property in Tamworth


3. Hinckley

Rail journey: Hinckley to Birmingham New Street

Journey time: 37 minutes

Average property price: £225,570

Average monthly rent: £659

Search for a property in Hinckley


Further reading…

Should I sell or rent out my house?

How much mortgage can I get for my salary?

How to save money when buying a house