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Parents pay premium to be near schools

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Parents are willing to pay an average premium of more than £30,000 to be located close to their preferred school.

Research from Santander found that parents who move to an property in the catchment area for a good local school paid an average of £32,127 more than similar properties elsewhere.

Almost one-in-three parents said they had changed jobs to make sure their kids were able to get into their dream school. A quarter actually had to downsize when moving towards the catchment area.

Other sacrifices were often made and one third of parents said they moved to an area they didn’t like for the benefit of their kids.

Half of all families said they would look to move away once their child’s place in the school had been secured.

The North East and London were the areas where most likely to move to be close to a good school while parents in Wales were least likely.

Miguel Sard, managing director of mortgages at Santander UK, said: “With competition for school places fiercer than ever, parents are making significant financial and lifestyle sacrifices to be within the catchment area of desirable schools. All buyers will have a wish list of what they want their new home to have and being within a certain school catchment is increasingly common amongst young families – but can often come at a cost.

“Many of these sought-after areas command significant premiums, so it’s important that parents don’t stretch themselves beyond their means if they are looking to move. Finding a mortgage provider that not only offers competitive rates but also has the expertise and range of products to ensure that the right deal is secured, is absolutely key to this.”

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