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Cost of living in Scotland: prices and how to afford it


Scotland is well-known for its whisky distilleries, bagpipes, vibrant music scene, and picturesque lochs spread out over the nation. Scotland is a well-liked holiday destination for people from all over the world because of its beautiful landscape and architecture, hearty cuisine, and renowned golf courses, but what is the average cost of living in Scotland?

How much do you need to live comfortably in Scotland?You can live comfortably, covering expenses and setting aside money for savings, in Scotland with a monthly salary of £2,500, which is below the average salary
Is rent expensive in Scotland?The average rental price in Scotland was £840 per month as of December 2022
How much does it cost to live in Scotland per month?Not including rent, the average cost of living in Scotland per month is around £700

The average cost of living in Scotland per month is around £1,500, which is 1.26 times less expensive than the average in the UK. Scotland was rated as the finest place to live in and the eighth most expensive state in the UK.

In Scotland, the average wage after taxes is £2,800, which is sufficient to pay for Scotland living expenses for 1.9 months.

How much do you need to live comfortably in Scotland?

According to Numbeo.com, the cost of living in Scotland’s capital city of Edinburgh is around 18.4% lower than that in London. In late 2022, the regular monthly expenses for a single person living in Edinburgh, excluding rent, will be close to £700. This does not take into consideration non-essential expenses. You can live comfortably, covering expenses and setting aside money for savings, in Scotland with a monthly salary of £2,500, which is below the average salary.

The living expenses in Scotland obviously change from person to person depending on preferences, lifestyle choices, and personal circumstances, but this still provides a fair starting point. Considering the cost of getting married and raising a child in the UK, a family of four would pay even more per month, about £2,400, without rent.

Is rent expensive in Scotland?

Over the past year, the price of rent has increased roughly 14%, with the average rental price in Scotland reaching £840 per month in December 2022. That said, according to Numbeo.com, in Scotland’s most expensive city, Edinburgh, rent costs are 48.6% less than that of London. In Aberdeen, living costs on average are slightly lower, reaching nearly £645 per month, not including rent.

How much does it cost to live in Scotland per month?

Not including rent, the average cost of living in Scotland per month is around £700, but how does this number break down in terms of monthly expenses? Here’s a look at how much people pay in Scotland for basic living expenses.

Utilities

Like other goods and services, the price of utilities like gas and electricity has climbed significantly over the past year all across the UK, including in Scotland. You can expect to pay about £200 per month on average in Scotland for basic utilities, with the most expensive cities being Edinburgh and Glasgow. The average gas and electric bill Glasgow at the end of 2022 was nearly £200, in line with the rest of the country.

Groceries

Despite making up a relatively small amount of monthly costs, food prices have gone up since the pound’s recent decline in value. Similar to the rest of the UK, in Scotland, depending on food and lifestyle, a single person might anticipate spending between £400 and £500 per month on groceries.

Transportation

When it comes to transportation in Scotland, on average people spend around £100 each month on public transit and petrol. While the prices have gone up for almost everything, especially food, petrol and utilities, due to inflation and geopolitical conflict in Europe, to respond to the dramatic rise in the cost of living, the government has expanded its support for households. Read more to see what the UK is doing to respond to the cost of living crisis and alleviate the challenges households are facing, particularly from rising food and utility bills.

Financial tips

How can you invest your money so that you are able to better afford the living cost in Scotland? Though Scotland is a bit more expensive than other places in the UK, such as Northern Ireland, with good financial planning you can develop an investment portfolio that can provide enough income for you to be able to afford living in the area.

Open a general investment account, and with the help of a financial advisor, you can come with an investment strategy to provide income so you can afford to live in Scotland.

FAQs

Is Scotland cheaper to live than England?
Most Scottish cities have cost of living differences between them and popular UK cities of about 10%. In fact, establishing a business in London is said to cost 30% more than living in Scotland! The cheaper cost of housing in Scotland is the primary reason for the lower average cost of living.

What is a good salary in Scotland?
According to the Scottish Parliament, Scotland has the third-highest median gross annual wage of the UK’s nations and regions, which is higher than the overall average at £26,007 per year. Scotland has the same median gross weekly wage as the rest of the UK at £504, making it the third highest among all the countries and regions.

Which is more affordable, Glasgow or Edinburgh?
According to Numbeo.com, the cost of living in Glasgow, including rent, is 4.7% lower than in Edinburgh, with rent prices in particular 26% higher in Edinburgh than Glasgow.

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