Proximity to popular schools drives demand

By Staff Reporter

Property demand in Sydney’s suburbs is driven by its proximity to popular schools, according to a major real estate group.

Anugus Raine, CEO of Raine & Horne, said with the introduction of the My School website, more parents are securing homes near catchment areas of schools with an academic reputation to meet strict enrolment qualification criteria.

“It is now easier for parents to compare the performance and progress of almost 10,000 schools in Australia,” said Mr Raine.

“As a result, properties located within the catchment areas of schools scoring high academic rankings are in demand.”

The My School website sources data from the annual National Assessment Program – Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN) results, which is conducted at years three, five, seven and nine for all Australian school students.

Hugh Macfarlan, principal of Raine & Horne Chatswood/Willoughby, said strict school enrolment policies is also a driver for buyers on the north shore.

“Due to a bottleneck of enrolments in north shore schools, some, such as Roseville Public School, only enrol children living within the designated catchment area,” said Mr Macfarlan.

“As a result, homes situated in these catchment areas are very popular with families.”

Lisa Surian, director and sales consultant at Raine & Horne Parramatta, said a property based in Cherrybrook Technology High School area saw strong interest when it was listed before it was sold for $695,888 to a family who wanted to be local to the school.

Ms Surian said buyers tend to bid more enthusiastically for a property close to the school they want to enrol their children in.

“Good family homes in selective school catchment areas don’t usually come up for sale all that often in Parramatta, but when they do, they are extremely popular,” said Ms Surian.  

Schools with a specialist focus, such as Westfields Sports High School in Sydney’s south west, had also driven buying activity in the area.

“Many families visiting listings in nearby Fairfield West and Wakeley regularly ask whether a home is in the Westfields Sports High catchment,” said Carlo Mattiuzzo, co-principal of Raine & Horne Fairfield.  

“The school’s catchment is popular with both buyers and renters, and we regularly notice how demand for property in the catchment heats up towards the end of the year, when school enrolments start to close.”

According to Australian Property Monitors, the median house price in Fairfield west is just over $400,000, with a clearance rate of almost 60 per cent.

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