The research showed that the amount paid to live near the country’s top independent primary schools – which do not have catchment areas – is usually even higher than it is for neighbourhoods with a good non-fee paying school. This is apparently so pupils have an easy walk or parents a short drive to school.
The independent Dragon School in Oxford, whose alumni include Emma Watson and Hugh Laurie, the actors, comes top of the list, with a local premium of 169.5 per cent.
Parents who have sent their children to the school in the past include Aung San Suu Kyi, the Burmese opposition leader, and JRR Tolkien, the author. Fees are near £6, 000 per year. The average property value on the same street as the school is £1 million according to Zoopla, a property search website.
Parents buying homes around St John’s College School and King’s College School, fee-paying schools in Cambridge, face a premium of 160.8 per cent. They are located on the same road, where the average property value is almost £900, 000.
Justin Marking, the head of residential property at Savills, said: “We see that competition is huge to get into good primary schools, and parents are keen to make a pre-emptive strike and move close to put themselves in the right place before their children reach school age.”
Janette Wallis, the senior editor of The Good Schools Guide, said: “For the first child, the primary school seems to be the be-all and end-all.
“Parents might use private prep schools in areas where there are grammar schools in the hope that an early spend will lead to a grammar school place.”
In fourth place in the league table is Bollin Primary School in Altrincham, Cheshire, where there is a premium on local home prices of 156.4 per cent, the study found. According to local estate agents, the school helps to make the purchase of houses in the area highly competitive.
Martin Parker, of Countrywide estate agents, said: “There is also the new Bowdon Free School across the way, so this pocket is very popular among families with young children. A nice 1930s three-bedroom semi will sell very quickly.”
The average value of a property on the same street as the school is about £620, 000.
Parents buying homes in the postal area of Bramhope Primary School in Leeds, West Yorkshire, another community school, face a 139.7 per cent premium. Tony Wright, a partner at Carter Jonas, a property firm, said parents “up sticks” to move into the area long before their children reach school age, in order to ensure they meet the entry criteria.