School catchment or better area?

(12 Posts)
Sparkles715 Tue 04-Aug-20 14:48:54

I have my heart set on a particular secondary school for my DC. There isn’t much available close to the school. And definitely not much that I love that I can afford. There’s an area that is in catchment but isn’t as nice an area but the house is my ideal type of house. Or there’s a great house but just outside the catchment so a bit of a gamble for admissions.

Would you choose
House 1: very expensive for what it is (much smaller and in need of work) but walking distance to the school
House 2: my ideal sort of house and in the catchment but not in as nice an area
House 3: my ideal sort of house in a nice area but out of catchment
House 4: in catchment but an odd layout townhouse with kitchen in the middle floor

OP’s posts: |
sianyb83 Tue 04-Aug-20 17:28:44

house 1- think about how much this will really benefit you...for example if you are doing school run on the way to work, the walking distance thing not that beneficial as you'd probably drop on your way to work in the car
Obviously if you don't drive or have younger sibling to think about this is a much bigger selling point!

house 2 - no, area is everything

house 3 - consider that catchment aren't always as rigid as they seem! My husband is head of an oversubscribed school, the sort of school people move to get into, we got a guaranteed place for our 5 yo last year - I found people were from all sort of random out of catchment areas...some had got in on appeal or waiting list

house 4 - sounds expensive and disruptive to put right

Sparkles715 Tue 04-Aug-20 18:30:37

Some years house 3 would get in but not every year. It’s a tight one!

OP’s posts: |
Lazypuppy Tue 04-Aug-20 18:32:54

I'd go for house 4, kitchen on middle floor wouldn't bother me

JoJoSM2 Tue 04-Aug-20 18:36:54

How bad is the less nice area? I might consider if it’s just a bit less fancy but not if there’s something wrong with it, ie rundown or dodgy. Otherwise, I’d go with house 1 but I’m very particular about schools.

TorkTorkBam Tue 04-Aug-20 18:36:58

Location, location, location.

House 1 all the way.

When the children are in year 7, sell up and move to a house you prefer. It will be easy to sell a house in catchment of a good school. I wouldn't buy house 4 because a townhouse with an odd layout will be harder to sell.

House 1 needing work is a bonus. Do the minimum to make it seem a more attractive to buyers. See it as an investment of discomfort and DIY time for a couple of years to make a tidy profit, get the school you want and give you time to find your ideal home.

user1487194234 Tue 04-Aug-20 18:40:07

Catchment all the way

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Shadowboy Tue 04-Aug-20 18:50:46

What’s the alternative school like? For me a good school is important- you can make a house a home but if the kids end up in a bad school it can affect their future.

notheragain4 Tue 04-Aug-20 20:37:02

Does being in catchment actually mean they will get into the school? We have one of the top performing secondaries in the country in our catchment area, but it's so oversubscribed not everyone gets in regardless of catchment.

I would check that first.

Sparkles715 Wed 05-Aug-20 09:13:18

@Shadowboy the alternative school is okay but nowhere near as good as the other one.

@notheragain4 within catchment have all got in in the last 10 years. Some from out of catchment get in but that distance can be minuscule depending on the year.

OP’s posts: |
Puffthemagicdragongoestobed Wed 05-Aug-20 20:19:21

We just bought house 1. So far no regrets.

Notthetoothfairy Wed 05-Aug-20 20:26:14

I’m guessing it’s not needed for next month as too late for this year, so that gives you time. Maybe wait and see what else comes on the market.

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