One London borough has come top of the list of happiest places to live, according to Rightmove.
The property portal said that Richmond upon Thames in London, which includes Twickenham, Hampton and Richmond, is the happiest place to live in Great Britain.
It’s the first time an area from London has taken the top spot.
The Happy at Home Index asked 26,000 residents how they feel about their area based on 13 happiness factors.
Richmond residents said they feel a sense of belonging to the area, as well as enjoying access to nature and green spaces, such as Richmond Royal Park.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I’m delighted for Richmond to win this award. It has so much of what makes London so special – its access to beautiful green spaces, its real sense of community, and an array of shops, cafes and local culture that makes it stand out.”
Winchester in Hampshire came second and Monmouth in Wales third.
Galashiels is the happiest place to live in Scotland for a second consecutive year.
Most important factors
The study found that feeling a sense of pride, belonging, and community is most likely to contribute to feeling happy to live in an area, more so than having access to things like public transport, schools and job opportunities.
Those living in rural areas are more likely to be happy than city residents, especially those living near a national park or Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Residents who live near woodland, mountains, the coast or a river, were more likely to be happy in their area than those who live in a built-up area.
Access to nature and green spaces was more important than having access to public transport, shops and restaurants, and employment opportunities.
Looking to move
Around one in three (30%) residents think they’d be happier living in a different area.
In fact, moving to an area that makes them happier was cited as the top reason people are looking to move home.
This was followed by wanting a bigger home (28%), looking for better value for money (27%), a change of lifestyle (24%) and changes to personal circumstances (21%).
Tim Bannister, Rightmove’s property expert, said: “Residents continue to value living near green spaces and natural beauty, features that became all the more important during the pandemic.
“With moving to an area that makes them happy a key motivator for people looking for their next home, highlighting these types of features nearby could really help sellers looking to appeal to potential buyers.”