How to find a property near a good school in Shropshire
Education is high on the priority list for many families when they look to move home. Nick Berriman and Caroline Eaton of Berriman Eaton estate agency, which operates in Shropshire, Wolverhampton and Staffordshire, have provided their top ten tips for buying a home near your preferred school.
1. Plan well ahead and check the waiting list for the appropriate year
2. Don’t rely too much on Ofsted and league tables. Visit a selection of schools and find one that suits your child
3. Look for areas where there are both good primary and secondary schools
4. Check our head teachers and make sure the good ones aren’t planning retirement
5. Check catchment areas and any other criteria that could assist
6. If you are planning for your child to walk to school, check road safety and shortcuts
7. Do a dummy run and check for grid locks at school times
8. Talk to parents at the school gates
9. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket for an area with only one outstanding school – look for an area with a range of good schools
10. Be prepared to pay a premium if near a good state school – but it will be money well invested.
When the Humby/Davenport family decided to make a lifestyle change and move back to their family roots in Shropshire, their brief was very clear, with their ideal home needing to be within half an hour of Bridgnorth, in a village location and close to a primary school. For Lisa’s daughter Scarlett, then aged two, the move to a semi-rural location needed to accommodate her future educational needs.
Although extensive online searching produced hundreds of properties, it took word of mouth to give the best direction towards a short list of appropriate schools. Once the field was narrowed down, Lisa and her partner Ian visited some of the village schools rather than relying on Ofsted reports. They were influenced by their first impressions on the school visits and chose Stottesdon Primary, an exceptional school with small classroom sizes and an adjoining nursery which became first choice for their daughter.
Caroline Eaton says: “It was only when we met the family in the office that we were able to fully understand their search requirements and engage with advice on the local school reputations. It really highlights that the internet provides a tool, but for genuine, useful customer service, talking directly to local agents will give greater assistance.”
Having embarked on finding a property in the village within their criteria and then selling their existing property, the process was stressful to ensure that the new term schedule was met. A year on, this anxiety is a distant memory. The couple now have a delightful home with views of the Clee and Scarlett is thriving in a school with a class size of 12.
More tips on how to find a good school here.
You can find out more about Berriman Eaton at www.berrimaneaton.co.uk; 01902 326366