Country Living Costs


Many people are surprised to hear that it is more expensive to live in the country than in a town or city. The newest research that was conducted by the NFU Mutual insurance company shows that the expenses of country life can reach as much as twice the national average. Let’s see what drives the cost of county living in the UK so high.

The greatest expense in the countryside is of course petroleum. Doctor’s office, grocery, school, library and other everyday necessities are far away for most country dwellers and there is no other way to reach them than by a car. And with today’s petroleum prices, jumping in the car to get milk from the grocery or drive the children to school has become a major financial burden. Heating is another huge expense for people who live in the country because houses in the country tend to be much older and less insulated than urban buildings. But according to the NFU Mutual research, petroleum and heating are not alone to blame for the expensive country life.

In their research, the NFU Mutual compared the cost of 21 goods between different locations in the UK. They have discovered that the price of these goods in the countryside is nearly double higher than in average. And in contrary to the common belief that food is less expensive in the country, the NFU Mutual researchers have found that it is up to 10 percent more expensive than in urban areas. They have connected higher grocery bills in the country with higher costs of transporting the good to remote areas.


In addition to higher heating, petroleum and grocery bills, people in the countryside also spend more money for property maintenance. Due to the decline of rural population, the countryside is chronically lacking various services. And in order to keep the property well maintained, country dwellers often have to do the lawn mowing, clear snow from the driveway, etc. themselves and of course, buy the equipment. The statistics, however, do not show the whole picture.

Country living involves many expenses that are virtually unknown to city dwellers, however, many rural dwellers are considerably more self-sufficient than their urban counterparts. Nearly everyone who live in the country produce enough fruits and vegetables for their own consumption and buy milk, meat, honey and the rest of food products from local farmers at lower prices than city dwellers in the groceries. Many also own forests and heat their homes with firewood virtually for free, while the others use renewable sources of energy such as solar panels. Looking at it from this perspective, country living may not be any more expensive than urban dwelling.