With a flourishing job market, lively nightlife and an eclectic arts-and-culture scene, Leeds is increasingly attracting new residents from across the UK and beyond.
Living in Leeds
Fondly known as 'God's own county', Leeds' natural beauty and scenic countryside are rivalled by few. The city is also blessed with lovely architecture, plenty of historical sites and charming Victorian-era shopping centres for residents to enjoy. Active residents love the city's abundance of parks, sports grounds and picturesque pathways.
Professionals moving to Leeds will be happy to know that the city’s economy has experienced regeneration and diversification in recent years and is brimming with opportunity. Major international and local corporations have established bases in the city, making for an exciting job market open to qualified workers looking to take advantage of the city’s favourable work-life balance and excellent lifestyle.
That said, salaries in Leeds tend to trail behind those in other major UK cities such as London. Be that as it may, the gentler cost of living in the city often offsets the difference in earnings, so new arrivals can rest assured that they will likely live very comfortably.
The local public transport infrastructure is exceptional, with most residents choosing to forego car ownership entirely, while the city is also conveniently located with efficient transport links to the rest of the UK and Europe. The city’s healthcare is also top-notch with access to subsidised and comprehensive services at NHS-approved doctors and hospitals.
Cost of living in Leeds
The cost of living in Leeds is relatively affordable, and the highest cost new arrivals will have to budget for is accommodation. The cost of renting or buying a home in Leeds is on the rise and is currently one of the highest in Northern England due to increased demand. While the housing market may be fiercely competitive, savvy house hunters should be able to find something suitable for their lifestyle and budget.
Families and children in Leeds
Parents moving to Leeds will have a range of excellent government and private schools to choose from. Leeds is also one of the most family-friendly cities in the UK, with plenty of green spaces and other attractions to keep the whole family entertained. Roundhay and Golden Acre Park are among the jewels in Leeds’ crown, while the city also boasts myriad museums, theme parks, historical sites and theatres to explore.
Climate in Leeds
Tucked in the foothills of the Pennines and the valley of River Aire, Leeds has a maritime climate. Winters in the city are typically grey and rainy, with occasional frost and snowfall. With wet yet mild summers in Leeds, raincoats and umbrellas are non-negotiables when leaving the house, no matter the season.
Ultimately, new arrivals in Leeds will fall in love with the city's multicultural vibrancy, relaxed way of life and friendly locals, and will likely stay far longer than intended.
► Read Lifestyle in Leeds to find out more about the city's attractions, events and top shopping destinations
► Check out Areas and Suburbs in Leeds to learn about the city's different neighbourhoods
Are you an expat living in Leeds?
Expat Arrivals is looking for locals to contribute to this guide, and answer forum questions from others planning their move to Leeds. Please contact us if you'd like to contribute.
Expat Health Insurance
If you’re thinking about taking out private health insurance, our trusted partner Cigna Global is very aware of all the difficulties that expats can face when it comes to healthcare in a new location, so they have created a range of international health insurance plans specifically designed for expats, which you can tailor exactly to the needs and ensure access to quality care for you and your family.
Sirelo has a network of more than 500 international removal companies that can move your furniture and possessions to your new home. By filling in a form, you’ll get up to 5 quotes from recommended movers. This service is free of charge and will help you select an international moving company that suits your needs and budget.