Should You Buy Your Home Based on the School District?


Should You Buy Your Home Based on the School District?

By Dana Bull

Nothing quite marks the end of the summer like seeing the familiar fleet of yellow school buses driving around town. Back to school season is in full swing!

There’s no denying that school systems have an impact on housing values. Simply put, people are willing to pay more for good schools. We see evidence of this in research by Brookings Institution, which found that across the 100 largest metropolitan areas, housing costs average nearly $11,000 more per year near a high-scoring public school than near a low-scoring public school.

So, what does this mean for home buyers?


Be Prepared to Pay a Premium

Buying a home in a top-ranked school system will cost you. How much more? An analysis by Redfin showed that buyers are willing to pay an average of $50 more per square foot for homes near top-notch schools. Homes just a short distance apart with nearly identical attributes can sell for drastically different price points if it means buying in a top school district vs. an average school district.

You May Need to Make Some Sacrifices

If you prioritize school systems in your overall buying strategy, you may need to make some sacrifices to stay within budget. In arecent survey, many buyers stated they would trade amenities for better schools. About 62 percent said they’d give up a pool or spa, 50 percent would give up accessibility to shopping and nearly 44 percent would pass on a bonus room.

Budget for Higher Taxes

State and federal government provide some support, but the majority of public education is funded by municipal tax dollars. The amount of support that school districts receive from municipal property tax revenue depends on the local tax base. In areas where the majority of students are attending public schools, you can expect property taxes to be covering the lion’s share of the funding.

Academic Enrichment Programs for 1st - 8th Grade Students

Join Us To Be Elite

Tel: 571-217-2357

SAT/PSAT, AP Calculus/AP Physics, College Essay, TJ Prep

School Spending May Increase

If you choose to buy in an area where residents value education, school spending will be a main focus. If you have school-age children you may be in support of spending if it’s going toward improving the quality of your kids’ education. This money can go toward anything from state-of-the-art technology to new programs and supplies. However, if you do not have children or once your kids are grown, you likely won’t feel the direct benefit. Regardless of whether or not your family utilizes the public schools, you may still reap the benefit of school spending. In fact, a study by the National Bureau of Economic Research suggests a one dollar increase in per-pupil state aid increases aggregate per-pupil housing values by about $20.

It’s Not All About Buying

There’s no doubt that great schools make for an easier sell. This is based on the historical trend that as test scores rise, so do home values. Thinking long-term, this means that when it’s time to list your property, you will likely reap dividends.

Offering serious and challenging mathematics to intellectually gifted students

How to Research School Systems

The area where you choose to buy your home impacts the public school system your children have access to and your property value. Considering these facts, how can you go about researching school districts?

  • There are some fantastic online resources such as the U.S. Department of Education and comparison websites like and These sites provide excellent snapshots, reports and data about districts and specific schools.
  • At a minimum, you should speak with parents who have children in the school system. They can give you the inside scoop and discuss their experiences.
  • You can even schedule an on-site visit to meet with teachers and faculty to learn about areas that may be of interest to you, such as statistics on test scores, student-to-teacher ratio, graduation rate, class sizes, special programs, etc.

Choosing a Location With Schools In Mind

Whether or not the educational aspect influences your home search, you should still consider the proximity of your house in relation to the schools. From a logistics standpoint, the location has a direct impact on traffic patterns during pick-up and drop-off hours due to school speed zones and bus stops. Depending on your situation, you may want to be in walking distance of the elementary school or as far away as possible. Moreover, where you buy within a town or city may determine which school your child will be allowed to attend.

Let all ginseng lovers get the real ginseng from Wisconsin


What is the Connection Between Home Values and School Performance?

By Grace Chen

Is there a real relationship between expensive houses and better public schools? A new report sheds light on the connection between property value and school quality.
Families often choose the location of their next home by where their children will go to school. As focus on school performance has become more astute thanks to a rising emphasis on test scores and completion rates, home shoppers have become more cautious in their selections as well. Do schools directly affect home values in a neighborhood? The answer may depend on where you are shopping for your next home.


Licensed in MD, VA, DC, PA , DE, NC, SC, FL
WeChat ID: sunnychenyuqing
NMLS # 1220187

Home Values and School Spending
According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, there is a definite correlation between school expenditures and home values in any given neighborhood. A report titled, “Using Market Valuation to Assess Public School Spending,” found that for every dollar spent on public schools in a community, home values increased $20. These findings indicate that additional school expenditures may benefit everyone in the community, whether or not those residents actually have children in the local public school system.
While the findings of this national study are compelling, they do not paint a full picture of the link between school spending and home values. According to the website, some school districts may operate more efficiently, so while expenditures are lower, the quality of education is still high. In addition, the size of the district or proximity of schools from neighboring districts could impact the perception of a specific school’s value, beyond the simple expenditure formula.

Researchers that published the report also found that wealthy school districts, where home values may tend to be higher, spend their funding more efficiently. The greatest spending was seen in school districts filled with low-income families, large districts and districts containing fewer homes – areas where home values may be lower overall. The results indicate that while home buyers may associate school quality with spending to some degree, this factor will not be the most significant one in influencing home values. Still, the trend has been noted on a national level, which offers some credibility to the association between the two.

Award-Winning After-School Math Program for K-12 Students

New Ratings Impact Housing Prices

In 2010, the Wall Street Journal reported on a higher correlation between school performance and home values, which fluctuates somewhat in different states and school districts. According to the report, the increased availability of school data has led to more families searching for homes based on the quality of schools in the neighborhood than ever before. Today, a family in the market for a new home in a different location need only look as far as the Internet to find information on standardized test scores, completion rates and student-teacher ratios to rank schools in the area where they are headed.

According to the Wall Street Journal, when the state of Florida rolled out its new grading system for all the schools in the state, home values were directly impacted by the new system. In fact, homes in neighborhoods with A-rated schools increased their value by as much as $10,000 over a similar home in the vicinity of a B-rated school. As the grading system continued over a number of years, that gap has widened. Now, home values could vary by anywhere from $50,000 to $300,000 a home, based on the current rating of the school in that neighborhood.

National Look at Home Values and Schools
A more recent study by the Brookings Institution found that housing costs tend to be higher in areas where high-scoring schools are located. The study, which looked at the 100 largest metro areas in the country, found an average difference of $205,000 in home prices between houses near high-performing and low-performing schools. Homes around high-performing schools also tended to be larger, with 1.5 more rooms than homes near low-performing institutions. In addition, the number of rentals in areas near high-performing schools is around 30 percent lower.
“We think of public education as being free, and we think of the main divide in education between public and private schools,” Jonathan Rothwell of the Brookings Institution was quoted as saying at the website for the National Association of Realtors. “But it turns out that it’s actually very expensive to enroll your children in a high-scoring public school.”

APLUS教学中心 | 一对一辅导服务中心 | 申请咨询顾问中心

Good for Home Values, Hard for Relocating Families
While this news may be good for individuals concerned about the value of their current home, it can create challenges for families looking to relocate to a new neighborhood. The coveted school district in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, is filled with homes priced at the top of the housing market in the state, making for plenty of financial challenges for families that want their children to benefit from the top-rated schools in the area. Even families that can afford the higher home prices may find houses snatched up so fast, they have a hard time landing a contract on a home that meets their needs.
In addition, the differences in home prices may contribute to the educational disparities that occur between low- and middle to high-income students. Those who can afford to move to a higher quality school district often do, leaving those who cannot afford the same luxury stuck in subpar institutions. In addition, the difference in home values often leads to more segregated schools, which also lead to further disparities in education and subsequent income levels.
Still, the association between home values and quality education can be a boon to those living in a neighborhood with an in-demand public school. As data continues to be published about school performance nationwide, the expectation is that the trend with continue, and even increase, on a district, state and national level.

Tel: (301)906-6889; 
Licensed in MD, VA, DC, WV, PA, DE, NC, SC, FL 
WeChat ID: sunnychenyuqing
NMLS # 1220187

President, Principal Loan Consultant, Leader Funding, Inc.
Wechat ID: Willow6621
NMLS # 208136

电话: (240) 784-6645

Phone: 301-366-3497

Simon Lin