Billed as an “emerging destination” by TripAdvisor, all eyes are currently on Ipswich – and for good reason. It combines history with a modern buzz and is becoming an increasingly popular commuter town for London professionals. In this guide, we’re discovering what it’s like living in Ipswich with a deep dive into the homes, lifestyle and everything else there is to know about this charming Suffolk town.
A brief history of Ipswich
Ipswich has been a settlement of great economic importance to England throughout its history – the town’s historic dock was once the largest and most important in the UK. It’s also one of England’s oldest towns and was initially a Roman settlement.
Where is Ipswich?
Ipswich is located in East Anglia and is the county town in Suffolk. It’s located around 10 miles from the mouth of the River Orwell and the North Sea. A growing number of London commuters are moving to Ipswich, thanks to its locations just 45 miles northeast of the capital.
Moving to Ipswich
As one of the oldest towns in England, Ipswich has plenty of pretty period homes, some of which date back to the 16th century. Of course, with any thriving town, there are a smattering of modern homes too, giving movers plenty of choice when it comes to housing.
Buying in Ipswich
The average house value in Ipswich is £294,468, with paid prices actually lower at £280,032. Expect to pay around £397,569 for a detached home, £204,231 for a terraced house and £141,700 for an apartment.
Ipswich property prices are higher than the UK national average of £251,000. Over the last 12 months, house prices have increased by six per cent and by an impressive 21 per cent in the last five years.
There’s a varied selection of estate and letting agents in Ipswich, with chain and independent options available to help you find a home.
Renting in Ipswich
One-bedroom homes rent for an average of £700 per month in Ipswich, with two-bedroom properties fetching in the region of £850 per month. For larger homes, expect to pay an average of £900 per month.
Cost of living
If you’re moving to Ipswich, you can expect to pay UK national average prices when it comes to everyday living. A meal for one person is around £12, the same as the UK average. A cappuccino is about £2.80, and one litre of milk is £1.00p.
Utility bills are more affordable than the nationwide average: electricity, heating, cooling, water and waste disposal cost an average of £92 (UK average £155). Broadband is about £30 per month.
Life in Ipswich
Ipswich is a small town, which means it has everything you need within close proximity. You also get the benefit of the Suffolk countryside, and it’s only about 12 miles from the coast. Living in Ipswich really does have a bit of everything.
Travel a little over 10 miles to Felixstowe for a coastal getaway or visit Rendlesham Forest with its 1,500-hectare mixed woodland. The town itself also has an array of parks and open spaces to enjoy a peaceful stroll.
Ipswich Station and Derby Road are the two primary train stations in the town. The former is on the London to Norwich line and has services to London Liverpool Street in a little over an hour, making it a good commuter town. There are also direct trains to Colchester, Felixstowe, Lowestoft, Peterborough and Cambridge.
The Saints is one of the main thoroughfares in Ipswich and has plenty of shops to discover. It also runs through to the historic waterfront, where there are shops and restaurants to explore. Alternatively, the town centre has a mixture of chain favourites and independents.
Head to the Food Quarter for some tasty street food or the waterfront for delights like Mariners, a floating brasserie on a boat in Neptune Quay. Dining options in the town are varied, with a selection of cuisines from all over the world.
There are a few nightlife options in Ipswich, including Unit 17, a nightclub with high-tech sound and lights and a regular lineup of themed dance music events. There’s also a range of bars to choose from.
Art & culture
Check out the Waterfront Gallery, which hosts a wide range of exhibitions for you to browse. The New Wolsey Theatre is the place to go for productions from local talent in the performing arts space.
Things to do
The historic old town has plenty of medieval architectural heritage to admire with listed buildings. You should also visit the Tudor Christchurch Mansion, which is home to art such as the largest collection of Thomas Gainsborough and John Constable paintings outside London.
What’s not to like?
There’s plenty of history in Ipswich, though it can look a bit same-y in some places.
Who lives there?
Ipswich has a population of just over 136,000 and a median age of 32.
Typical broadband speeds
The average broadband speed is 31 in Ipswich, which is slower than the UK national average of 67mbps.
Crime rates in Ipswich average 6,718 per year and are lower than the national average of 10,000.
Moving to Ipswich?
Want even more information about moving to Ipswich? Get your hands on Move iQ’s property report, which provides in-depth information on any property in this town in Suffolk. All you need is a postcode and you can get to know the area before you move there!
Last Updated: October 8th, 2021