Location remains the primary driver in the UK housing market, says new research commissioned by Savills. The agent’s latest housing market survey found that the quality of the neighbourhood in which a property is located was considered the most important factor by as much as 80%; more than any other single attribute.

The survey draws upon the opinions of nearly 500 households across the UK. Although location obviously came top as a value driver, good schools and a safe local environment also cropped up as very important factors for those looking for a property.

Other attributes which fell within the top five in the survey were the external appearance of a property, and the costs of maintenance. Another interesting factor was that the size and layout of the rooms in a house came out as more important to buyers than the number of rooms, or indeed the overall size of the property.

Lucia Cook, head of research of Savills, said: ‘The findings present a clear challenge to policy makers, planners and house builders to deliver developments which provide a sustainable living environment. This is particularly significant because the survey respondents showed a strong preference for away from town and city centre locations, where development is increasingly being concentrated.’