October 15, 2013 Josh Cantwell (0) House hunters are a savvy bunch these days. Thanks to the internet, they can look at houses without even contacting a real estate agent, and even learn about the area by doing some research on their own. One of the top searches for these house hunters is performed by school district. What schools are ranked at the top? How do these choices perform in comparison to others in the area? Do the schools help determine the value for a home? Searching by Schools The majority of house hunters are forced to live in a certain town or city due to their employment. Rather than risk losing their stable job, they make a compromise on the area but still want to provide the best for their families. Few families in this economy can afford a private school for their young children or they may prefer to save their money for a prestigious college education instead. Other families may want to support their local schools but subject their children to a sub-standard education. Schools have become a primary search tool for homebuyers and studies have shown they will pay almost double for a home in their desired district. Educational Opportunities It’s no secret that top performing schools provide greater options for the students upon graduation. From elementary schools to high school, the transcripts sent to colleges and universities should have not only high grades and a well-rounded student but it should also come from a top performance school. What good is a 4.0 GPA if the high school’s standards are sub-par? Colleges and universities realize the schools where the grades were earned is just as important as the grades themselves. Parents know this and are willing to pay the price, the house prices. What makes it a Great School? With top performance come activities not always offered by other schools. Characteristics of great schools include: small class sizes, teachers with exceptional credentials, availability of monetary funds for supplies and programs, and educated parents. These parents are willing to move and buy a smaller house, or even an older home, to be situated in a district with schools ranked highly from elementary to high school. Realtor.com reports that for almost 1000 consumers, they would be willing to pay as much as 20% above their purchasing budget to get into a home within their desired school boundaries. How do Schools Affect Real Estate Prices? Buyers are willing to pay more, that is not really a surprise, but what does that mean for sellers and potential buyers? It means prices will remain firm in certain markets and for sellers, this can be a great thing but buyers should be ready for a bidding war. Once you can get a house in that area, the value should stay stable and your house will be the investment you planned. Related articles Only 60 percent of students from Chicago's closed schools turn up at 'welcoming schools'