Manchester

Manchester is the second largest urban area in England, and is often thought of as the UK’s second city. Located in the north west of England nestled between Liverpool and Leeds, Manchester is also reportedly the UK’s fastest growing city economically. The area’s 2.8 million residents are incredibly proud of their city – and rightly so. In 2018 Manchester was officially named the Best Place To Live In The UK in The Economist‘s Global Livability Index. Read on to discover the developments rated by residents as the best places to live in Manchester and to read reviews from locals who own or rent in Manchester.

The landlocked county of Manchester is mostly urban and comprises ten boroughs: Bolton, Bury, Oldham, Rochdale, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford, Wigan and the cities of Manchester and Salford.

Historically, the textiles industry generated most of Manchester’s wealth. However, the city has developed to become a major exporter of media, music and football. It’s home to two international football teams – Manchester United and Manchester City – as well as popular TV soap Coronation Street and five universities.

4.73
Average Location Score

Excellent

79%

Very Good

16%

Average

4%

Disappointing

1%

Very Poor

1%

Best places to live in Manchester

HomeViews Top Rated Development ranking takes into account the Star Rating and HomeViews Transparency Rating of every development in the area

Street with tram in Manchester

Getting Around Manchester

If you haven’t visited Manchester for a few years you might be in for a surprise. The city’s skyline has changed dramatically in the last decade, with new residential development springing up around the city centre. More people are living in Manchester city centre than ever before.

“The tram station is a minute away which is a huge deal for me. Super easy to get around town because of that. We’re also in range of a lot of restaurants so deliveroo and Uber eats are awesome for us. So many choices. Overall we’re in a really great location.”  Mark-Christian, Verified Resident of The Trilogy

Spinningfields is one of the richest areas to live in Manchester. It is an area popular with footballers and soap stars. The amenities, array of restaurants and bars on the doorstep make this a highly desirable area; if you can afford the price. The River Irwell runs right through the heart of Spinningfields with developments Potato Wharf to the west and 10-12 Whitworth Street to the east. There are communal areas such as Hardman Square where local workers meet for lunch.

“The area is the best, its quiet but close to centre, close to the canal. Its close to the deansgate station. And its close to deansgate so loads of bars and restaurants there.” Anon, Verified Resident of Potato Wharf

Travel times to Manchester

Manchester is extremely well connected to the rest of the UK by road, rail and coach. London can be reached in two hours and 21 minutes by train, while Birmingham is only an hour and a half. For more details see our blog on Travel times to Manchester for connection times to all major UK cities.

Manchester from above

The Alternative Areas of Manchester

The reputation of Ancoats isn’t the best and was once viewed as the rough area of Manchester. A recent regeneration has allowed the dilapidated mills and deserted streets to become a much popular area. With new luxury flats like Flint Glass Wharf and The Ice Plant that are rated as some of the best places to live in Manchester, there are shops, bars, and new restaurants opening on a weekly basis and a flood of new residents moving to this area.

The Northern Quarter has a similar reputation to Ancoats with once empty streets now home to cafes, chic vintage shops or hip new bars. Local Mancunians are drawn to this area for the uniqueness and eclectic offering of property like Nuovo Apartments and Burlington House with sites between the two. Not as cheap as Ancoats it is not as expensive as other city centre areas. You are more likely to find quirky spaces, high ceilings, or conversions full of character. For many Castlefield boasts the best of both worlds. The convenience of town just a five-minute walk away but it is more peaceful, quiet and has some stunning views down by the canal. Many locals feel you get the best of both worlds living here. 

“The area is brilliant – we are so central to town – and Ancoats is really up and coming at the moment. The only downsides are the noisy road outside – but that is to be expected anywhere central!”  Naomi, Verified Resident of Nuovo Apartments

Manchester city

Outside the City Centre

For something new, visit Salford Quays. Whilst not the city centre every day the two seem to merge closer and closer. Salford Quays has become the media hub of not just Manchester but the UK with the iconic MediaCity. Many companies are relocating to the north west bringing with them new residents who are making this area of the city their home at developments like Middlewood Locks and Wilburn Basin. Both rated as great places to rent in Manchester. Salford Quays offers riverside living with shops, architecture and scenic views.

You can find out more about living in Manchester by reading reviews from residents. Click on the developments below to find out more about residents’ experiences and discover great places to rent in Manchester. If there’s a Manchester property that you can’t see on HomeViews,  you can add a new listing and leave your review here.

Best schools in Manchester

The city boasts some excellent schools, which we’ve covered in detail in our blog post on the 10 best schools in Manchester. Top of the list is Altrincham Grammar School for Girls, which is the 8th highest-rated school in the UK. The Altrincham Grammar School for Boys comes in second place.

Manchester universities

Manchester is home to no less than four major universities. The University of Manchester is the best-known, with 40,000 students, while Manchester Metropolitan is a similar size. The Universities of Bolton and Salford also fall within the Greater Manchester area.

For more details, see our in-depth guide to universities in Manchester.

Things to do in Manchester

Manchester’s reputation as a vibrant and characterful city continues to grow. Whether you’re into music, sport, food and drink, history, architecture or shopping, Manchester has a lot to offer. See our guide on the Top 10 things to do in Manchester for some ideas of where to start.

Reviews in Manchester

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The epitome of city centre living.

Verified Resident
Verified Resident
Review Date Dec 2023

It would be difficult to find a location that offers easier access to all that the city of Manchester offers. Literally minutes aways from the city centre and Manchester Piccadilly train station. However, being in the thick of it does not mean 24/7 noise or disturbance; the Kampus building is a very quiet and peaceful environment which must be down to the construction and design.

Please review your development:

Most of the apartments in Kampus, but not all, are around 50 square metres. A number have balconies. There is a clever use of space wherein no room feels cramped and there is useful amount of storage space. The quality of build is excellent with exceptional insulation. The private gym is a huge bonus; good equipment and HIIT and boxing sessions are included. Front desk management is very friendly and efficient. Wifi is free and fast.

Please share one thing (or more) which you wish you had known before you moved in:

I wish I had known that….I would do my first HIIT workout in years and actually enjoy it :)…I wouldn’t have to use the central heating as much due to great insulation. Seriously though, can’t think of anything significant in this respect.

How has the building management responded to any problems or issues you have raised:

The management is very responsive so far and takes swift action to queries.

5
Facilities
5
Design
5
Location
5
Value
5
Management
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Great place to live

Verified Resident
Verified Resident
Review Date Dec 2023

Got almost all the things you need! just if you live in the north block and window facing the piccadilly station can be noisy due to traffic noise and people love to honk around here

Please review your development:

– Nice and good quality apartment although some furnitures need to be refurbished eg. tables, washing machine
– 24/7 Security is the key when live in the city center
– Receptionists are always friendly and helpful
– Great facilities
– Maintenance could take a while in some requests

Please share one thing (or more) which you wish you had known before you moved in:

Nothing in particular, moved out once and come back again

I guess there’s not much could do in a typical viewing

How has the building management responded to any problems or issues you have raised:

The teams are quite responsive and helpful although maintaince request could take weeks to come but understandable due to high demand

5
Facilities
5
Design
5
Location
4
Value
5
Management
User submitted image of  Kampus, M1
User submitted image of  Kampus, M1
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Great building and staff

Verified Resident
Verified Resident
Review Date Dec 2023

Really good area to live. Very close to everything and a very friendly area to live. Lots of transport links close by.

Please review your development:

Chris, Faye and Frankie are amazing and very helpful. It’s great seeing friendly faces every day! They always put on great events that are very fun! The building has lots of communal spaces that are great to work in and there is a really good gym!!!!!

Please share one thing (or more) which you wish you had known before you moved in:

How many events the building puts on. They’re really fun and make the building very unique.

How has the building management responded to any problems or issues you have raised:

I have not had any problems with my apartment yet.

5
Facilities
5
Design
5
Location
5
Value
5
Management
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Very good place to live

Verified Resident
Verified Resident
Review Date Dec 2023

Close to supermarkets and there are plenty of bars and venues to socialise. The Marina nearby is beautiful – especially on a sunny day. The demographic is young and fun. Parking is tricky and there is anti-social behaviour around if you go north of here.

Please review your development:

The exterior design is eye catching. The internal layout is fine, although the corridors are very bare and clinical. There could be more access to lifts as the building is quite long so it takes a while to even get your flat. Property management is good. Regularly cleaned.

Please share one thing (or more) which you wish you had known before you moved in:

I wish I had known the area before – it is lovely. Just wish I had enough money to enjoy everything around here to the fullest!

How has the building management responded to any problems or issues you have raised:

Yes they have and send someone round in a few days

4
Facilities
3
Design
5
Location
4
Value
4
Management
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