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Parents paying thousands for homes in good catchment areas

24/08/2011 Kelly
Proximity to good schools is the top priority for one in three homebuyers with children under ten, according to a new study.

Research by Santander Mortgages revealed that 37 per cent of parents in this position are most concerned with moving into the catchment area of a good school, with many willing to pay as much as £12,141 more for a house to make sure this happens.

Highlighting the premium that parents are placing on good secondary school education for their children, the bank also revealed that the average amount extra parents would be willing to spend is £5,663.

While parents in the south-east were willing to shell out the most on securing a home near to a good school (£10,961 on average), the area with the biggest percentage of parents looking to buy a school in a good catchment area in the next five years was the west Midlands (26 per cent).

Phil Cliff, director of Santander Mortgages commented on the research: "People are increasingly concerned about the value of a good education and in some areas of the country, there is a significant amount of competition for places at sought-after schools.

"This has led to many parents trying to move to a particular area deliberately to improve their child's chances of getting into their desired school."

While a good school environment is crucial to a child's chances of educational success, parents should also ensure their kids are encouraged to learn at home.

Earlier this week, however, a study by the National Literacy Trust showed one in six children do not read any books at home, with seven per cent of youngsters never having visited a library.

Jonathan Douglas, director of the National Literacy Trust, warned that the one in six children who do not read often could well grow up "to be the one in six adults who struggle with literacy to the extent that they read to the expected level of an eleven-year-old".ADNFCR-2164-ID-800710055-ADNFCR
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