Rural relocation isn't just for retirees. Over the past five years, young professionals have left London in their droves – the number of 30 to 39-year-olds swapping the city for the laid-back life has risen by 80% since 2012. If you're considering a big move to one of the UK's rural property hotspots, there are a few pros and cons to think about.
Pro: the price is right
One of the main reasons for leaving the city for the countryside is the cost of housing. Properties in London cost £599,843 on average, while outside the capital you can expect to spend £333,181or less. Houses in the countryside are generally larger as well as cheaper, so you get more bedrooms for your buck too.
Con: fewer amenities
Living in the city is all about convenience. If you find yourself short of milk, you can quickly nip out and grab a pint. Living in the country could mean your nearest shop is a good half-hour drive away. If you fancy a Friday night takeaway or a quick drink in a local pub, your options might be a little limited, meaning it's time to brush up on your skills in the kitchen.
Pro: it's easy to get back to nature
There may not be a fancy gym within walking distance of your country home, but you're likely to have some spectacular hiking and wild running trails, like Wendover Woods in The Chilterns or the South Downs, nearby. If the hustle and bustle of city life is getting you down, a move to the country will be a breath of fresh air.
Con: social connections
Moving to the country might mean sacrificing your packed social calendar. As trains often stop before midnight, you'll need to leave after-work drinks a little early. You might find it hard to join your city-based friends for spontaneous plans, too. On the plus side, you'll have more room for hosting friends and visiting family members on weekends.
Pro: space to spread out
With less of a space squeeze, countryside properties generally have more rooms than city-centre homes – ideal if you're starting a family (or adopting some dogs). They also often come with plenty of outdoor room for summer barbecues.
Con: a longer commute
Unless you're able to work from home or find a job in the local town, you'll still need to head into the city for work. Country roads increase commuting times, while delayed trains add hours onto your day. Try to keep your travel to a minimum by moving within an hour's reach of the office.