Launceston best for families

Launceston is the best place to raise children according to a new report by Suncorp Bank.

With a low crime rate, less crowded schools and lower than average housing cost, Launceston rated first in the Suncorp Bank Family Friendly Index.

The Family Friendly Index ranks 30 Australian cities against 10 criteria including unemployment levels, crime rates, broadband in the home, access to health services, schools, childcare, volunteer work, house prices and disposable income.

Canberra came in at second, followed by Toowoomba in third, Albury/Wodonga in fourth and Adelaide and Perth sharing equal fifth.

Melbourne and Sydney came in at 14 and 23, respectively, while Brisbane was even lower in 24th position.

Suncorp Manager Craig Fenwick said more than half of the top 10 were smaller regional centres.

“The results reveal for the first time that many regional cities have a better balance of job opportunities, housing affordability, income, school sizes, health services, broadband access and lower crime rates,” Mr Fenwick said.

“This is the ideal mix for families when it comes to some of the fundamentals, and they’re certainly showing up our international hubs like Sydney and Melbourne.”

Coffs Harbour, on the NSW mid-north coast, was the least family-friendly city, coming in at number 30. Despite Brisbane’s poor performance Queensland was the most family-friendly state, with six cities featuring in the top 20.

The top 10 are as follows:

1 Lauceston (TAS)

2 Canberra (ACT)

3 Toowoomba (QLD)

4 Albury/Wodonga (NSW/VIC)

5 Adelaide (SA) and Perth (WA)

7 Hobart (TAS)

8 Darwin (NT) and Bunbury (WA)

10 Bundaberg (QLD)