How to buy a home close to a good school

Posted 9 September 2015 by Keith Osborne

Our guide to buying a home near a good school

To suggest education is a top priority for home movers is quite the understatement, with recent research showing that over a quarter of parents with children of a school age have either bought or rented a new property in order to secure an address within their desired school catchment area.

Families are now prepared to spend an 18% premium – an average of £32,127 in the current market - in order to move to their desired catchment area.​

With this in mind, parents are thinking earlier than ever before about moving to an area close to the best schools, with some deciding to move years in advance of their children reaching school age. Here are our top tips for buying a home near a good school, in association with Berriman Eaton estate agents, which operates across the West Midlands.

  • Plan well ahead and check the waiting list for the appropriate year
  • Don’t rely too much on Ofsted and league tables. Visit a selection of schools and find one that suits your child
  • Look for areas where there are both good primary and secondary schools
  • Check our head teachers and make sure the good ones aren’t planning retirement
  • Check catchment areas and any other criteria that could assist
  • If you are planning for your child to walk to school, check road safety and shortcuts
  • Do a dummy run and check for grid locks at school times
  • Talk to parents at the school gates
  • 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
  • Be prepared to pay a premium if near a good state school – but it will be money well invested.

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