Re-locating - which first house or catchment?

(11 Posts)
Count2three Thu 27-Oct-16 22:08:26

We are hoping to re-locate soon to Cambridgeshire. We have a mortgage in principle, are currently renting and have found a couple of villages we like the look of. We don't know much about the areas but have asked questions on the local boards.

Property is quite sparse and expensive so not loads of choice, however, I have found some to take a look at. Problem is, we don't know the order to do things. We have two DC's (7 and 4). DC 2 is due to start school next September and for obvious reasons we would like them to attend the same school and for for it to be a good school.

One of the properties we like is in the catchment for a few schools, the best of which was over subscribed last year. The nearest school in catchment was under subscribed but had an ofsted score of 3. Which order should we do things? Buy a house and hope to get them (both) in the better school? Any advice much appreciated.

Daisiesandgerberas Thu 27-Oct-16 22:25:32

Schools can change without prediction. For example, the arrival of a replacement headteacher.

School catchment areas can also change I think.

You can't change the location of a house so I personally would opt for this as a priority.

JoJoSM2 Thu 27-Oct-16 22:38:23

I'd go with the right location of the house too. There is no telling where the older DC will be offered a place - it's often down to sb moving away and a space becoming available in that year group. Younger DC will then have a sibling connection which almost always gives you priority when applying.

reallyanotherone Thu 27-Oct-16 22:46:44

Can you rent for a while before buying?

You will be looking at an in-year place for your 7 yo, and likely the 4 yo, as applications will be in for next year, and unless you move before april when school places are allocated you're on the waiting list for both children.

If you want a particular school you need to be as physically close as possible, to be top of the waiting list. Your 7 yo if they're in year 3 or above may have a shot at appeal on distance grounds if you're close, and are allocated a school miles away.

Undersubscribed means they didn't fill all the places in reception last year. If the year you want is full you will be refused a place.

I'd rent, get them into schools, then buy.

reallyanotherone Thu 27-Oct-16 22:52:16

Btw we relocated in june and mine have been waiting in school places since. One has just got a place in the local secondary, so only half a term out of school (it took the la that long to find a place) but there are no places in good primary schools. He will be out of school while we appeal for one of the 3 local schools, but we are unlikely to find out the result before christmas, when we'll be allocated a school anywhere in the county with place. At least we are top of the wait lists living so close.

TheSnorkMaidenReturns Thu 27-Oct-16 22:57:58

Moving to a new area? Rent!

Buy when you are sure. It will save you grief and money in the long run.

Count2three Thu 27-Oct-16 23:07:59

Thanks all. I shall check out rents.

Allocation looks complicated:

there is no telling where the older DC will be offered a place - it's often down to sb moving away and a space becoming available in that year group. Younger DC will then have a sibling connection which almost always gives you priority when applying

What does the above mean please? I don't understand. So, say we move in February of next year, I can still apply for intake for DC 2 reception and stand as good a chance as anyone else. But DC 1 will possibly need to go on a waiting list if no spaces - is that right? And if it is later in the year, we are in the same position with both DC's? Possibly attending different schools. Am I understanding correctly? Nightmare.

JoJoSM2 Thu 27-Oct-16 23:55:33

If DC1 gets a place now, you will have a sibling connection for DC2 to go to the same school. However that will only work if DC1 has secured a place by 15th Jan (deadline for primary applications).

namechangedtoday15 Fri 28-Oct-16 01:00:07

It's January here too so you'd be classed as a late application for dc2 and probably won't get over subscribed school.

And for some schools there is no sibling priority so check out the admissions policies of the school you're interested in very carefully.

Andcake Fri 28-Oct-16 11:39:50

Need to be in situ for primary applications something like 14th Jan ( with extra paperwork for a recent move submitted by mid Feb) otherwise application will miss deadline and will be the last to be considered...they can give you any school within 40 mins on public transport.
You need to rent - having had a nightmare rush for last years deadline buying a house you haven't found now by mid January will be an absolute nightmare. We started in March and just made it ( 1st time buyer too) there is loads of hiccups in house buying due to house chain issues. Our chain was 2-3 months from offer to moving day...and considered quick.
Rent near the school you want get youngest child in eldest will go to top of list due to sibling rule for their year then but in a year.

Andcake Fri 28-Oct-16 11:41:57

Link for Cambridgeshire applications
www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/info/20059/schools_and_learning/363/apply_for_a_school_place/4

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