These are the most sought after regions to move to in West Sussex, according to recent ONS data

A new study conducted by researchers at UK conveyancing solicitors, Bird & Co, has uncovered the most popular regions to live in West Sussex, having analysed recently released ONS net migration figures.

The study breaks down the stats by county and includes statistics on net internal migration, average house prices and the average ages of people migrating to the region.

Horsham is the most popular region of West Sussex, receiving a net migration rate of 640 people in the past year. In comparison, Crawley had more people leave (-132) than move there, which also happened last year.

On average, properties in West Sussex cost around £498,117. In Horsham, the average house price stood at £458,212 over the past year, whereas properties in Crawley had a lower average price of £361,126 during the same period. This suggests that although Crawley offers more affordable housing options, individuals are opting for pricier properties in Horsham.

In West Sussex, the majority of the population is below the age of 40, except for the district of Arun, where a significant proportion falls within the 65-69 age group.

The study also looked at the most popular counties in England and Wales, revealing the top places to move to.

Hampshire was the most popular county to move to. The most recent statistics, and their net migration figures, showed Hampshire had a net migration rate of 3,636 people in the past year.

North Yorkshire (2,882) was the second-most popular county, followed by Suffolk (2,663), Devon (2,602) and Derbyshire (2,570).

West Sussex was the seventh-most popular county in England and Wales to move to last year. The study found that 2,353 English and Welsh citizens moved to West Sussex in 2021, a marked change from the previous year, where West Sussex came tenth place.

Daniel Chard, Partner at Bird & Co, said: "As the findings shed light on a significant decline in net migration across England and Wales, it becomes evident that the desire to relocate within the country has experienced a big downturn.

“This could possibly be attributed to the housing market becoming increasingly inflated and a scarcity of available properties in desirable areas. Furthermore, a growing number of individuals are choosing to remain in their current homes or undertake renovations instead of pursuing relocation.

“Among renters, it is likely that increased costs associated with moving, and the rental market becoming increasingly expensive, mean many people are choosing to stay in their current locations rather than incurring expenses such as new deposits when changing residences.

“When interpreting these statistics, it's also important to consider that the previous year was heavily influenced by COVID, as people were more likely to have relocated due to the pandemic. In comparison, the current figures show a significant decrease in net internal migrations, suggesting that factors influencing people's decision to move have potentially changed, and the desire to relocate has diminished to some extent.

“The turbulent property market in the UK presents an opportunity for potential homebuyers to explore counties in the North, such as Derbyshire and North Yorkshire, where house prices are significantly more affordable than their southern counterparts. This could allow individuals to secure a property at a more reasonable price in this challenging market.”

Looking to move to Sussex now you know it’s the place to be? For advice and help with purchasing a new property in the area, you can access Bird & Co’s Sussex conveyancing services for more information.