The Real Impact of School Zones on Property Prices

There is always talk in the property market that when buying a home that location matters.

Certainly, the saying “location, location, location” has never gone out of style in real estate circles. But there is now a new component to that property location equation – house prices in particular suburbs are becoming bankable property investments based on their inclusion in sought-after school catchment zones.

The property market research indicates that home values may remarkably increase according to a property’s location and access to a popular school zone.

And property values are not just increasing by a little. Recent property market research shows that house prices are valued at up to 15%, even as high as 32% in some Victorian suburbs, more in areas where placements in government (or state) school zones are in high demand.

Getting In The Zone

School zoning has at its heart a simple idea: Australian government schools (also known as metropolitan schools, or state schools) create local zoned areas, called “catchments” for each school.

Students residing permanently in that catchment may attend the school, plus special entry is usually given to siblings and other special cases.

If extra spaces are available, those who register may be selected to attend based on criteria such as:

  • how close they live to the school,
  • family and social ties, and
  • curriculum issues.

For highly sought after places it is not uncommon for parents to sleep out, some for weeks, to gain the chance for their children to attend a perceived prestigious metropolitan schools in other zones.

Mum and Dad’s Reaction in The Property Market

Across the country there been increased popularity in public schooling, and parents are becoming competitive to obtain places for their children at schools that are considered a premium government schools.

With schools now requiring more than just an address on paper, but also copies of council rates notices and other evidence of residence, it is no longer possible for parents to take the old-fashioned white lie strategy of claiming the family lies at Great Uncle’s or second cousin Sue’s place within the school zone.

Instead, it is now not uncommon for motivated parents to purchase within a catchment for a high-performing public school and pay a premium to live there.

These Australian parents view public schools as a way to give their children a first-class education without the price tag, and with many public schools performing (and even outperforming) their private counterparts, they have become a well-regarded alternative.

What Has This School Motivated Migration Done To Property Prices?

By choosing a new home within a school catchment, the effect of demand on property prices in these suburbs is clear – motivated parents willing to secure their child an enrollment in the best public school are increasing demand and driving up property prices.

This is a clearly issue of supply and demand: In established suburbs where valued school zones are located, the number of houses is settled. Plus, not every home is available for sale. This means when a property is offered for sale, it is more appealing to buyers wanting to purchase for the school catchment zone.

Finding a Property

If you would like to find out more about buying real estate in either an established and up and coming school catchment zone, do a search with SiteFinder!

At SiteFinder you can get a property report and discover more about house prices in your school catchment area.