Study the Market: School Catchments

Something not all buyers consider when they’re looking for a new home is what school’s catchment the location will place them in. Even if you’re not thinking about kids any time soon, the local school can be an important factor when you come to sell, with families often choosing it as a deciding factor between two homes.

What’s a Catchment?
All state schools have a certain area they cover. Essentially, if you buy a house on a given street, your kids can only attend the school for your area. Of course, some schools will be more desirable than others, so if you can’t decide between two properties in different areas, this can help you make a decision.

What Do You Want?
If you have children, or you’re thinking about it, take the time to look at the records of the various schools in the area, or ask your agent if they have any information available. You may also be able to contact the school directly and make your own enquiries. Also, if you have children already in school, you may want to look at homes in their school’s catchment so they don’t have to change.

Can I Sell This?
If you’re thinking of selling, take the time to research what catchment you’re in. This can be a strong incentive for your buyers, and if you’re near a good school, you can promote this fact to your market to help you stand out from the crowd.

For property investors, having your property in a good school catchment can help drive up market interest from renters, which can in turn drive up the amount you can charge for rent.

No matter what your plans are, schools can have a big impact on where you choose to live. Whether you have kids, or just want to make plans for the future, remember to ask about the local schools the next time you’re looking for a new home.