Home Buyers Pass on Garages for Schools

Originally published at REALTOR.com

Buyers Say Garages, Updated Kitchens Aren’t as Important as This (July 25th, 2018)

“Most buyers understand that they may not be able to find a home that covers every single item on their wish list,” says Danielle Hale, chief economist for realtor.com®. “But our survey shows that school districts are an area where many buyers aren’t willing to compromise. For many buyers, ‘location, location, location,’ means ‘schools, schools, schools.’”

The extent of compromises that buyers are willing to make to get their top-choice schools may be surprising too. For example, 78 percent of buyers who said schools were important in their house hunt said they had to compromise on certain home features. The features they most commonly reported giving up in exchange for their preferred school district were a garage (19 percent); a large backyard (18 percent); an updated kitchen (17 percent); desired number of bedrooms (17 percent); and an outdoor living area (16 percent). A spring home buyer survey conducted by realtor.com® had showed a garage was the number one feature that home buyers were looking for this year, followed by an updated kitchen and an open floor plan.

Not surprising, the desire for particular schools did vary by a buyer’s life stage and age. Ninety-one percent of buyers with children said school boundaries are important or very important compared to 34 percent of those without children.

Buyers surveyed said they determined the school district they wanted to live in by looking at schools’ test scores, followed by the availability of accelerated programs, arts and music, diversity, and before- and after-school programs. Realtor.com® offers a tool through its site’s search to specify a district or school boundary so buyers can search for homes within that preferred area.

In Maryland the most searched schools in 2018 according to Harris Research were:

Youths Benefit Elementary School Fallston Broadneck High School Annapolis


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