16 Sep

Location remains key for families

Location remains key for families

Many families find the close proximity of a good school is a key factor when moving house, according to a new study.

Research from price comparison firm Confused.com revealed that around a third of parents in England have moved house to be in the catchment area for a desirable school.

It was also discovered that ten per cent would consider paying more than £50,000 extra for a home that is in the preferred area.

For many parents, the decision on how location will impact on schooling is clear from very early on, with 18 per cent of those polled admitting that they started thinking about what school to send their child to before they were born.

However, in some cases, it may be cheaper for parents planning to move into a new catchment area to consider private education rather than paying the higher property prices demanded in such regions.

For example, the average house price in England is £275,721, but the typical price of a house close to Lowbrook Academy, Maidenhead, one of the country's leading state schools, is £481,023.

Confused.com also found that many parents are willing to take certain risks in order to ensure their child goes to a top school.

Nine per cent admitted to having given a false address to ensure their child got a place, while 24 per cent would look at temporarily renting an additional property in the catchment area if it would help get that vital space.

"Although household finances remain stretched, it is significant to see from our research that a number of parents are willing to pay more on the price of a new home to ensure their child is in the catchment area for a good school," said Gareth Lane, head of home insurance at Confused.com.

He added: "Choosing the right school for your child is possibly one of the most important decisions a parent will make. However, it’s concerning that inflated house prices could be impacting choices for children in education by pricing people out of areas with good schools."

Recent figures from the Department of Education shows that there is increasing pressure on primary school populations, with some primary schools having classes with just one teacher to 70 children.ADNFCR-1222-ID-801748902-ADNFCR

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