Moving to the new city or just other part of the same city might be stressful if you care about the area you will be living as much as the price you will be paying. For me personally it is important to live surrounded by people just like myself – young and well educated. I would rather pay a little bit extra to live in the area and feel safe walking back home at nights than risk meeting someone scary looking who offers you to buy some weed… If you are just off university, I doubt you would enjoy living in the area full of pensioners with minimum tolerance to loud music and any kind of parties. If you are looking for a family house – it should be important to you as to where are you raising your children and what kind of influence will the neighbours do to them.
It is great if you are targeting specific area/postcode you already know and like, but what if you do not have anyone to advise you? You should not always trust comments from people posting on forums – usually reality is different to what they see and two people living in the same postcode can post two conflicting views depending on what previous experiences they had.
Luckily, there is a tool called “Financial Strategy Segments Interactive Guide” which you can use to check any UK postcode and get information about what kind of people live in that particular area including information on: average age, education, income, debt status, marital status and employment status. Lets look at one of the examples:
How the hell does that work and where does that information come from you might ask? I uncovered this tool in one of consumer research/marketing sessions presented at work. It is used by large companies to look where the target audience lives. All data is collected by credit agencies, in this case Experian. Credit companies will always know your current residency through your council / electoral payroll – this gives them your age/status. Phone contracts, loans, mortgages, interest from investments, credit cards, overdraft, number of current accounts and all your payments history is logged by them giving them overall view of who you are and how good you are with your money. All people are then mapped to postcode they live in and that’s how the magic is done.
Accessing post-code check tool
Normally you would need to request access to use this tool, but we managed to get a direct access link and it is available here. Just enter the postcode you would like to check and click “Go”. Data is from year 2011, so it is quite recent, but it might not include some newly developed areas.
There are loads of information you can get out of this great interactive website, but the “Key features” section is probably all you will need to make the decision for your next move ;)