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.

4.65
Average Location Score

Excellent

73%

Very Good

21%

Average

4%

Disappointing

1%

Very Poor

0%

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

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.

Reviews in Manchester

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Great development for pet owners

Review Date Jun 2021

The development is in a great location, especially if you’re a pet owner, you have pets at home and vets 5 mins away. Big Sainsburys for food shopping and TK maxx is perfect for treasure seekers like me!

There’s no traffic noise, but on our side of the road there is some building work going on, I have to give kudos for the sound proofing, the windows block out about 80% of the noise and it doesn’t bother us!

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The flat is well designed, we are renting a 2 bed -2 bath and using the second room as an office space for my husband. If you wanted to *run away from home* you have the club room where I see plenty of people quietly working away on their laptops. The management team are always on hand to help and answer questions and solve any issues if they arise.

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

The existence of a gap behind the kitchen cupboards. This will be important for owners of active cats.

I’m not sure if every flat is the same so worth checking.

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

The management solved an issue we had in the kitchen within a few days. They got maintenance to cover a gap behind the kitchen cupboards so our kitty is 100% safe if she decided to explore on top of them.

5
Facilities
4
Design
5
Location
4
Value
5
Management
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Mould Apartment 317 Ambassador

Verified Resident
Verified Resident
Review Date Jun 2021

Couldn’t care less about the design in all honesty, functionality and standard of living are a little more important first of all.

Facilities non-existent during lockdown with no refund even though this was a main selling point. Fair play shareholders of the company, you’ve gained bumper profits this year.

Building management are clueless and contractive. How can one claim that the mould is so bad we will need to move you as soon as possible to another flat. Then another come after the daily mould had been wiped down state oh no its fine, the issue is you dry your clothes in the lounge. Absolutely clueless beyond a joke.

Property management with GDPR breaches every few months, yeh brilliant. Probably why i’m receiving 2 spam phone calls a day now, absolutely brilliant management.

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I sympathise with anyone who rents Apartment 317 Ambassador in future. There is a clear external wall issue here where water is seeping through the brickwork. You probably notice a pool of water in the lounge daily from water coming through the balcony doors also.

We had experts arrive at the apartment first time who told us it was unsafe for us to be living there and they would recommend moving us until the issue is solved. I wouldn’t say its normal for a pool of water to appear next to the closed balcony door every morning. Nor should mould spots appear every week no matter how poorly the flat is aired. We then had Grainger employees come around and simply clean the mould like the issue never was, and more experts came in and said its down to condensation and poor living conditions (after it was cleaned obviously). One I quote told us “we shouldn’t be drying out clothes in the lounge”. Now I’m not sure where else I can dry my clothes during a pandemic. Bearing in mind this is winter also, they suggested aerating the flat 24/7, in winter! Now the flat is cold enough as it is, I’d hate to see what my heating bill would have been had I kept the windows open. Clothes in wardrobes were having to be thrown out. Mould simply appears on a weekly basis.

Now for the rest of the review, bear in mind this was during the lockdown so facilities may not be open. But there was no reduction in rent/other amenities provided from the closure of the communal area and the gym for 9 months plus. One of the main reasons people sign up is for that space and the onsite gym use as it’s a part they profusely promote. I notice Grainger a FTSE 250 company made generous profits this year and shareholders got their dividends, whilst the people living their got no deduction in rent after being offered great social events.

When lockdown started the parcel, situation was a complete joke. The staff obviously got furloughed and it was up to us to sort the situation ourselves. I personally lost 2 parcels as it was anyone’s guess who received them to open the door then just threw them into the parcel storage room where anyone could take them.
Large Number of GDPR breaches also, one notable one was 500 or so email accounts and details were posted off one of the members of staff’s email. This just ended up being brushed under the carpet.
The bike storage next, during the summer the door on the storage broke. I noticed this when I went to go on a relaxing bike rise in the heat. Low and behold my bike has been stolen. Luckily they had footage which I never saw of 2 people with hoods walk in, and clean snap the metal bars where the bike was chained to ride off with it. Two points here is that they actively promoted storing your bikes in the storage room and won’t allow in the apartment. The other point is there was no email sent out warning me the bike storage door was broken. If this email came through I may well have ignored the no bikes in apartment rule and still have my £500 bike.

The Coop, they conveniently did a 3-month refurb towards the end of the tenancy. Another convenience that was taken away.

The Walls…… Wow, this is the 3rd floor. It’s no joke but you can literally hear people on the 9th floor. I had no idea new builds were built so poorly. There was another 10-week period where they notified us of building work taking place to build an office on the ground floor. This wasn’t mentioned when I signed up funnily enough. I work late nights sometimes past midnight, so when I hear drilling at 8am every weekday for 10 weeks through these paper-thin walls, it’s very unpleasant.

I left the apartment at the start of February, and I’ve held off writing this review until I got my deposit back. Another task that has taken 3 months…. It’s criminal. First quoted for a few items, deep oven cleaning £35, don’t bother cleaning your own oven it’s not worth the hassle as no matter how clean you leave it they’ll charge you £35 it seems. £50 for a small crack in a freezer draw that they will likely not replace, £200 for professional cleaning afterwards a standard it seems, mattress clean x 3, sofa steam clean £15, few marks on the wall from wear and tear, £50. All items that would constitute general wear and tear. Then 2 months later we got another email where they told us they would replace 2 mattresses due to the mould issue but they told us this 2 months after their initial bill that we were still arguing with some of the charges, mainly the £200 for cleaning. The speed of the communication is atrocious. £693.60 for replacement of 2 bed frames and mattresses now were told. So I ask if I can pick one of the mattresses and bed frames up. Bearing in mind the email states they would need to be replaced. Not that they have been replaced….. Then was told it was replaced months ago and the old mattresses thrown out. Yet no communication at that time only 3 months later.

Finally, just accepted it, haven’t got a leg to stand on when they can just claim, fault after fault that is down to mostly the mould issue. Been almost 2 weeks since I accepted the return of the deposit and I still haven’t been paid. This added to the 3 months since I left the flat. If I failed to pay my rent for 2 weeks I’m sure they would let me know and chase it up daily, yet when it’s a deposit I haven’t any choice but to wait.
Only positive I can think of is that the staff on reception are nice and friendly and the location, the quays walk is a great way to clear you head from all the issues with the flat.

I think that is it. I feel sorry for the owner in all honestly as the flat is nothing short of a disgrace. These new builds are being thrown up so quick for investors to buy and rent out that they clearly lack any fundamental structure, damp proofing, or any regard for people who live there. It is simply a game of who can pass the blame, no wonder none of these construction companies give warranty past a few years, or are liable for any problems that arise in future. I feel for the future tenants as they will continue to be blamed for poor construction issues out of their control and be held accountable with their deposits. The sofas are also awful. They look nice, but whoever bought them obviously did it as a job lot and never thought about sitting on them first. This is likely another item that will break within a 3-year window as they are built purposefully poorly for flats alike.

All in all, its taught me to never touch a new build flat in particular ever again in my life, and at least I will have avoided what will be a huge issue in future of a mass-produced pile of un-liveable apartment blocks that have been thrown up in the Salford area.

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

How thin the walls were, how badly aerated the place was, how unsafe the bike storage is would all be a start.

What is the best feature of your home:

The Location is great if you don’t own any possessions , everything else is awful.

1
Facilities
1
Design
4
Location
1
Value
1
Management
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Outstanding.

Review Date Jun 2021

Lovely area, with amazing transport links to the surrounding areas and there are plenty of local amenities.

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Amazing apartments and outstanding staff who all have exceptional service. Staff are professional, friendly and welcoming and so helpful throughout the process of moving. The welcome pack was such a beautiful finishing touch to our move, we can’t recommend enough! Thank you 🙂

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

.

If there is one thing you would change about your flat or property what would it be:

Possibly allocated parking but good alternatives are offered.

5
Facilities
5
Design
5
Location
5
Value
5
Management
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Vox review

Review Date Jun 2021

This is a perfect area to live in the views are spectacular as good as they get in Manchester.There are many shops in walking distance and a co op at the bottom of the building very handy,There are also amazing bars in walking distance with good vibes.Tram and train links right by the building.The street is quiet just off the main road and when doors are shut I can’t hear any outside noise.Parking is secure and gated with cctv and there are free bike racks again with security doors and cctv a lovely touch.I have met lots of friendly cool people who all I have spoke to love the building.

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The design of the building is really cool with lots of thought gone in to it,It has a well equipped gym,hiit classes,spin classes,yoga classes and mini events on a regular basis which is really cool and good for people getting to know each other.There is a running track on the roof which is low impact on joints and inspiring for runners! Dogs are welcome which is fabulous as there is a thriving dog community 🐶the roof garden and views are simply stunning with beautiful sunsets.The staff are excellent they are super helpful,kind and attentive nothing is a problem for them they are a positive team the best I have come across yet they have made me feel very welcome 🙏

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

I didn’t know they had lots of community events that if you choose to you can get involved with.

If there is one thing you would change about your flat or property what would it be:

I would have a water slide down to ground level!!!

5
Facilities
5
Design
5
Location
5
Value
5
Management
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Manager Response

Hi Daryl,

Thank you for your glowing review. Were so glad you and Bonnie are loving your new home.

Thank you for sharing about our community events, its great to see you involved as well. Yoga really was fab!

I can’t offer you the water slide, but I have ordered a doggy paddling pool to keep Bonnie cooler on the roof.

Thanks again from myself and the VOX team.

Indea Garlick
Assistant General Manager

Articles about Manchester