A school catchment area is the geographical location where a state school’s core intake of students must live. This zoning applies to state-funded or public schools and generally indicates which schools a child can attend based on residential address.
You may have noticed that many real estate websites feature school catchments in their description of properties and searches.
Many parents and potential parents consider school zoning when deciding where to rent, making this ‘location’ aspect important to all property investors.
Homes near top-performing schools may command a premium over comparable properties outside the zone and be a stronger rental proposition.
Investors should research popular school catchment areas and suburbs surrounding high quality schools because there’s likely to be higher demand for properties in such locations, especially from tenants of certain demographics.
Also consider the type of property that would suit potential tenants – families with school age children – including apartments and townhouse complexes which are maintenance free, are of a family-friendly design and offer safe and convenient play areas and recreational facilities.
Should private school fees prove out of a family’s reach, it is usually the public schools with the best reputation that they will turn to. And from the investor’s point of view, it is widely accepted that well-regarded, well-performing public schools have an effect on house price growth in an area.
This makes homes within some school catchment areas hot property and access to sought-after public schools a major factor for tenants with school-aged children.
Interestingly, it appears that a location within a sought-after public primary school zone is even more desirable than for a high school zone given the trend to target public primary school education followed by private secondary years.
School catchment boundaries are crucial to a government’s planning of education facilities, be those new schools, additional buildings or refurbishments. Sometimes it is necessary for an education department to adjust school catchments to distribute student numbers among the local schools in line with demand and capacity. Schools can open and close with changes in population.
As you would expect, homes within the catchment areas of popular schools are tightly held.