Parents paying £52,000 more on a home to secure a place at an outstanding state primary school

Written by Amy Funston on - Portals -
  • With 86% of ‘outstanding’ state primary schools oversubscribed in England2, parents are paying an average asking price premium of £52,000 to live in the successful admission area of one
  • This 18% price premium is compared to living in admission areas of Ofsted grade 3 schools
  • The ‘Primary School Premium’ study combines the largest asking prices data set from Rightmove with data from the only provider of successful admission areas, FindASchool by com
  • The West Midlands has the biggest premium, with property 32% more expensive to live near an ‘outstanding’ school than Ofsted 3, while the lowest premium of 13% is in the East Midlands
  • To move from an area with ‘good’ schools to ‘outstanding’ schools holds a 12% premium of nearly £37,000 more on average
  • Rightmove’s School Checker with data provided by FindASchool by informs home-hunters if a property was in the previous successful admission areas for local schools


A new study reveals the asking price premium that parents will need to pay if they want to secure a place at an ‘outstanding’ state primary school.


Across England, 86% of ‘outstanding’ state primary schools are oversubscribed, making for fierce competition for school places. The average ‘Primary School Premium’ to move from an area in the successful admission area of a school that is rated as ‘requires improvement’ by Ofsted (grade 3) to a property in the successful admission area of an ‘outstanding’ school (grade 1) stands at £52,372 in England.


The West Midlands has the biggest premium of 32%, or £52,919 more. The neighbouring region of the East Midlands has the lowest premium of 13%, though that still means paying £23,325 more. In London, it would cost over £80,000 more to secure a place at an ‘outstanding’ school in the capital, with an average asking price of £678,595.


Currently, 20% of primary schools in England have ‘outstanding’ (Ofsted grade 1) status. A much bigger 62% have a good (Ofsted grade 2) status3. The difference between sending your child to a ‘good’ school versus an ‘outstanding’ school is £37,000 more on average.


  Primary School Premium by region:

Region Average Asking Price Grade 3 to 1 Premium Grade 2 to 1 Premium
Grade 1 Grade 2 Grade 3 (£) (%) (£) (%)
West Midlands £218,903 £187,317 £165,984 £52,919 32% £31,586 17%
North West £184,659 £164,205 £145,269 £39,390 27% £20,454 12%
Yorks & Humber £181,821 £164,654 £148,934 £32,886 22% £17,166 10%
South East £408,201 £367,986 £336,222 £71,979 21% £40,215 11%
East of England £353,496 £322,547 £293,673 £59,823 20% £30,949 10%
South West £300,862 £284,000 £253,791 £47,071 19% £16,862 6%
London £678,595 £659,397 £598,054 £80,542 13% £19,198 3%
North East £144,192 £134,322 £127,102 £17,090 13% £9,870 7%
East Midlands £201,874 £190,208 £178,549 £23,325 13% £11,666 6%
National Average £350,339 £313,450 £297,967 £52,372 18% £36,889 12%



Miles Shipside, Rightmove’s Housing Expert comments: “Looking for the right home near the right school is one of the most important factors that home-hunters tell us they look for when they’re thinking of moving. Many are willing to compromise on other factors if it means getting their children into a good or outstanding school. Our new study with for the first time puts a price on the premium of actually securing a place at a good or outstanding school, and highlights the challenges that many parents need to go through to secure a place at a school and a home that they know is right for them. There are of course other factors that play a part in the overall asking price of an area – things like the size of properties and how high the demand is, especially if there’s a shortage of available property.”


Dominic Blackburn, Product Director of said: “Previous studies have shown links between outstanding schools and house prices, however our data is the first data that is based on whether the property would have secured a place at the school. Living near a school is not necessarily a guarantee of securing a place with some Ofsted outstanding schools having successful admission areas of less than 100 metres. It is important that property seekers know if the house they are looking at was in last year’s successful admission area and how that affects the property price.”


Views from estate agents near outstanding schools:

Mark Rimell, Partner at Strutt & Parker’s National Country House Department, comments: “Broxbourne in Hertfordshire is a hotspot for good schools and it is one of the main reasons I see buyers snap up houses here. The area attracts a lot of London buyers looking to the commuter belt for two key elements – the best schools and efficient transport links – and when the two collide, like in Broxbourne, of course there is a premium to pay as competition can be fierce. Even for younger families, many plan ahead as to where they want their kids to go to school and will have the school league tables in front of them ready to strike while the iron is hot! I moved my family from Clapham to Hertfordshire for this very reason; I wanted better schools for my kids with larger grounds that would ultimately give them a better quality of life. Certainly, if an area suddenly lost its grade 1 status schooling, the area would be less desirable and therefore would negatively affect house prices.”


Anthony Jevons, Director at Jackson-Stops & Staff in Hale, Greater Manchester, comments: ”Hale and Bowdon command a property price premium compared to other nearby areas for a number of reasons: the superb access to excellent schools, the larger nature of the different types and styles of properties which are typically detached or semi-detached, the leafy green suburban setting close to open countryside – and all within an easy commute of Manchester city centre.”


Every property on Rightmove has the School Checker tab with details of schools’ previous successful admission areas from FindASchool by and the latest academic reports, to help home-hunters compare nearby schools and see if they were oversubscribed the previous year to help inform their decisions.


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