Manchester is separated into 18 distinct suburbs and neighbourhoods, according to the Manchester Property Guide, with each boasting its own unique character. Whether you are new to the city or are simply looking for your next move, choosing where to live can have a significant impact on your overall experience. In this article, we take a look at five of the best neighbourhoods for everyone from the first time buyers through to hipster hotspots for young professionals.
Best for Students
Fallowfield is a vibrant student hub in the suburbs with eight separate halls of residence – a particularly great option for first year students at the University of Manchester. The area is close to pubs, clubs and bars, as well as the Armitage Sports Centre which offers football, rugby, hockey and cricket pitches, giving students many opportunities to meet new people. Fallowfield has a frequent bus service running to and from the city centre, making it easily accessible. Cycling is also an option, as Fallowfield has put safety first by installing a bike lane separate from the traffic, meaning students can cycle into town without a car in sight.
The area has private accommodation options as well as university halls to appeal to all students. A standard, self-catered room in university halls starts from £102 per week, whilst the higher quality accommodation with an en-suite can reach £152 per week.
Best for Young Professionals
The Northern Quarter’s unique aesthetic of vibrant street art and bohemian bars is particularly popular with recent graduates and young working professionals. With a wealth of independent cafes, quirky vintage shops and top restaurants, the Northern Quarter is in the midst of the action, fuelled by a strong creative community.
There is a range of stylish apartments available to rent, including characteristic warehouse and mill conversions offering high ceilings, large windows and exposed floors. The prices can vary drastically with one bedroom rentals starting at £750p/m, whilst the more upmarket properties can be rented for £1,400p/m and above, with loft conversions among the most expensive.
Public transport is rarely needed due to the area’s central location, however with ample bus routes and tram links you will never struggle to get from A to B. The Manchester Art Gallery and the Royal Exchange Theatre are also close by.
Best for First Time Buyers
With new developments and conversions appearing regularly, Castlefield is becoming increasingly popular for first time buyers. The area is close to the city centre making it a short commute, but is situated in one of Manchester’s more relaxed neighbourhoods and is surrounded by tranquil waterfront bars. Offering the best of both worlds, some of Manchester’s central attractions are only a stone’s throw away, whilst a number of bars and clubs are available locally in Castlefield. Public transport is rarely needed because of the prime location, however there are a number of options if required, including water taxis!
Converted mills are among the most popular properties in Castlefield, however cottage-style houses and modern new-build townhouses are also available with recently developed sky gardens. In August 2019, terraced houses in Castlefield sold for an average of £92,288, whilst the average cost across Manchester was £144,493, demonstrating Castlefield’s affordability in comparison to other neighbourhoods.
Best for Young Families
One of the most important things to consider for young families when moving house is the quality of the local schools in that particular catchment area. Didsbury certainly ticks all the right boxes with Beaver Road Primary School and St Catherine’s both receiving ‘outstanding’ marks in their latest Ofsted report. Didsbury is also ideal for young families for its plentiful green spaces and parks. There is easy access to family-friendly activities and a distinct community atmosphere amidst the local cafes and restaurants, as well as the the Parrs Wood Entertainment Centre which has tenpin bowling and a cinema.
The only downside to Didsbury for young families? The competition for housing. While there are plenty of smaller apartments and terraces, larger family homes are in particular short supply leading to an inflated market. Last year’s average price for terraced properties fetched £353,662 and semi-deatched houses sold for an average of £395,794.
Best for Luxury Living
Bordering the beautiful Cheshire countryside, but still close to the buzz of Manchester city centre, Trafford is a highly desirable location with many desirable properties. The journey into Manchester has been made easy by the Metrolink tram system, which has benefitted from a £350 million investment adding two more stops in Trafford (due to open in 2020).The neighbourhood is also the ideal location for entry into some of the city’s top ranked schools. According to Manchester Evening News’ 2019 Real Schools Guide, seven out of 10 of Greater Manchester’s best secondary schools are in fact in this neighbourhood.
However, what’s perhaps most attractive about Trafford is the lavish lifestyle it allows its residents to lead. An award-winning food scene fronted by Altrincham Market Hall, an abundance of swanky independent bars and Trafford City, which contains a wide selection of leisure and retail facilities, are all on the doorstep of Trafford residents.