Scarcroft Primary

Would you pay a premium to live near a top school?

Posted 28/08/2017

Yorkshire & Humber parents pay nearly £16,000 to live near the right school, according to a recent study.

Research from Santander Mortgages has found that a quarter of parents (24%) with school age children have rented or bought a property solely to put themselves within a favourable catchment area.

When buying a home, families actually pay up to a 12% premium to get within the zone, equating to some £26,800 extra on a property. This is just £1,500 less than the current UK average full-time salary of £28,213 - and as many as 20% of people even changed jobs to facilitate a move. 

So what does this all mean?

This isn’t a shock to many as competition for places at the top schools is intense and parents will do what they can to ensure the right spot for their child.

And, while it is a premium, it’s still considerably less than paying out for a private education. Miguel Sard, managing director of mortgages at Santander UK, said: 

Our study highlights the significant financial and lifestyle sacrifices that parents are making to be within the catchment area of a desired school.

Should we be worried? 

Perhaps unsurprisingly, this is causing parents to go to drastic measures when it comes to property, and some real sacrifices are being made:

  • 25% have moved away from family and friends
  • One in five have had to downsize
  • 19% have moved to an area where they feel less safe
  • A quarter have overstretched, paying more than they can realistically afford

Posted 3 months ago

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