Living near top schools in your state could cost you an additional $300,000 for a house.

A recent study reveals that the financial burden of education starts well before students enter college.

When parents are on the hunt for a place to call home, they often prioritize proximity to top public school districts. According to Chicco, a children’s equipment manufacturer, homes in these sought-after districts command nearly $300,000 more on average compared to the national average home value of $353,748. The data, based on Zillow home values and Niche’s rankings of the best school districts in the U.S., illustrates this stark contrast.

The study highlights that the average home value in the best school district in each state is significantly higher at $651,662, representing an 86% premium over the national average, as reported by the research.

Kyle Beierlein, a research assistant working with Chicco through GoFish, emphasized the strong correlation between home values and school district rankings nationwide. He noted that this trend transcends geographical boundaries, manifesting prominently from coast to coast.

Which states demand the highest premiums for access to top schools?

Chicco’s analysis identifies the top five states that impose substantial premiums for residing in their best school districts:

  • In Texas, living in the Eanes Independent School District in Austin requires a whopping 486% premium, with an average home price of $1,721,835 compared to Texas’s $293,824.
  • Missouri’s Ladue School District in St. Louis commands a 346% premium, totalling $1,047,091 against the state’s $234,834 average.
  • Connecticut’s Westport School District presents homes valued at $1,630,823, representing a 332% increase over the state’s average of $377,247.
  • California’s Palo Alto Unified School District carries a 308% premium, with home prices hitting $3,030,407 compared to the state’s $743,435 mean.
  • Ohio’s Indian Hill Exempted Village School District in Cincinnati demands a 198% premium, reaching $635,473 versus the statewide $213,149 average.

Which commands a higher premium—elementary or high schools?

Residences near top-rated elementary schools typically come with a 65% price hike compared to a state’s average home value, while those near top-rated high schools see a 45% increase.

Beierlein noted, “Hence, it generally costs more to live near the top-rated elementary schools in a state than their high school counterparts.”

Acclaimed schools:Below are Florida’s Top 10 elementary and middle schools, distinguished by U.S. News and World Report.

Which states impose the highest premiums for their finest elementary school?

According to the research, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Tennessee have the most substantial premiums for accessing their top elementary schools:

  • Connecticut homeowners near the premier elementary school in New Canaan pay 359% more, reaching $1,352,580, compared to the state’s $377,247 average.
  • Massachusetts residents near Weston’s top-rated elementary school face a 247% premium, priced at $2,033,172 versus the state’s $585,959 average, the highest in the study.
  • Tennessee’s Brentwood region, near the state’s top elementary school, commands a 245% premium at $1,054,248, significantly higher than the $305,570 statewide mean.

Which states exhibit the highest premiums for their top high school?

Although the best high schools align closely with a state’s average home price, the premiums remain substantial:

In Kansas, residing near the top-rated high school in Overland Park incurs a 182% markup, totaling $635,473 compared to the state’s $213,149 average home price.

Delaware features a 157% premium, with homes near Wilmington’s top-rated high school priced at $957,321 against the $371,811 statewide average.

Washington State sees a 182% increase, with homes near Redmond’s best high school costing $740,202, surpassing the state’s $562,290 average.

Can I access top schools without a hefty price tag in certain states?

There are select states where homeowners enjoy access to top-rated schools without surpassing the statewide average:

  • In New Mexico and Maine, living in the best school districts costs 46% and 44% less, respectively, than the state’s average home value. Colorado offers a 29% discount.

Beierlein explained, “In regions like Maine and New Mexico, top-rated school districts are often located farther from major cities, contributing to the lower home values in comparison to the state average.”

  • For proximity to top elementary schools, North Carolina offers the most significant savings at 58% below the state’s average. Oklahoma and Florida follow with 36% and 28% reductions.
  • For access to premier high schools, Maine boasts nearly 72% savings compared to the state average, while Mississippi offers a 54% discount. South Carolinians can benefit from a 45% price decrease versus the state’s average home value.

“Although many top high schools and elementary schools align with the best school districts, this isn’t always the case, contributing to variations in home values near these schools,” Beierlein pointed out.

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