West Lothian was recently named as the “most financially viable” area to live in Scotland.
The word may be getting out.
Those of us lucky enough to live here already know that West Lothian is a great place to live. It’s an overlooked gem in many ways that our city-dwelling neighbours are largely unaware of.
Now, some research recently carried out gives it a new label: the “most financially viable” place to live in Scotland.
It’s an interesting label to add to the list of good reasons to live here.
The research was carried out by finance company Moneybarn, which ranked nearly 400 locations across the UK using a range of financial indicators. West Lothian scored very highly on rent affordability, rates of pay and house prices, boosting its total score to the number one most financially viable place to live in Scotland.
All photos by Turpie & Co
As we wrap up this gruelling year, we decided to take an uplifting look at why else living, buying, renting or investing in West Lothian has a rosy outlook.
Top of the class
In The Times Scottish School League Tables published earlier this year, West Lothian has six schools in the 50 top performing secondary schools in Scotland. The six are Linlithgow Academy, West Calder High School, James Young High School, St Margaret's Academy, Whitburn Academy and Inveralmond Community High School.
And relax: green spaces and scenery
We don’t have the drama of Highland landscapes, but we do have plenty of open spaces and beauty spots. This year has highlighted more than ever the value of spending time in green spaces. Properties with access to green spaces, for both buyers and renters, are in very high demand - and West Lothian has plenty. You can have a some of everything here, with the Bathgate Hills, the country parks, Union Canal, woodlands...the possibilities are endless.
Nestled as we are between Edinburgh and Glasgow with excellent transport links, the cities are within very easy reach for both work and play. With many people now working from home too, and some who may never go fully back to the office, housing needs are changing. There is increased demand for properties with a study/home office or space to run a business, so there’s a lot of movement just now - and West Lothian is again a perfect destination to get the space to work from home but retain proximity to the cities.
Every kind of shopping
The Centre in Livingston is the third biggest retail centre in Scotland and there is virtually nothing you can’t get here.
And there’s more: for different retail experiences, West Lothian’s smaller towns offer avariety of boutique and independent businesses, with a strong “shop local” ethos to support our independent traders and eateries. Widespread working from home may lead to a resurgence in demand for products and services in our town centres and local high streets, further developing and enhancing the character of our towns and villages.
Plenty of character
The character of our towns and villages is partly a result of an incredibly rich historical heritage. West Lothian has been the oil capital of the world in the shale oil heyday; the birthplace and playground of royalty; a religious headquarters, when the powerful Knights Hospitalier had their moment at the top. It’s been a commanding location for a long time!
And fantasy history? Our characterful sites are frequently used as a filming locations, most recently for the hit TV series Outlander, which has boosted tourism to the area.
So it’s not surprising that some of the best properties for sale or rent in the country are in West Lothian. And, as the most financially stable part of Scotland, you can buy, sell, invest and rent property here with more confidence than anywhere else.
Article published in Konect December 2020
This article was written in conjunction with Turpie & Co Estate & Letting Agents