One in four parents will move house for a good school

Christina Hoghton
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Christina Hoghton

Over a quarter (26%) of parents with children of a school age have either bought or rented a new property in order to secure an address within their desired school catchment area, according to Santander.

And they are willing to pay a premium of 11% to bag a home in the catchment they want, which equates to an average £23,707.

This is just under the average full-time salary in the UK, which currently stands at £27,6003.

Making sacrifices

The sacrifices made by parents buy within these sought-after catchment areas go far beyond financial, with 17% having changed jobs as a result of the move. A fifth decided to downsize while 15% moved to an area they did not like, just for the access to a good state school.

A further 22% admit they overstretched themselves, paying more for the property than they could realistically afford and 21% moved far away from family or friends.

Miguel Sard, managing director of mortgages, Santander UK said: “With competition for school places remaining high, parents are making significant financial and lifestyle sacrifices to be within the catchment area of desirable schools. Living within a certain school catchment area is a priority for many families but these premium addresses can come with a hefty price tag.”

“For those wanting to buy a new home, affordability is key so it’s important to look at incomings and outgoings carefully. Unfortunately this is likely to be harder to achieve for those wanting to buy in a specific school catchment area. We urge parents looking to move not to stretch themselves beyond their means.”