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Property prices near independent schools outstrip national average

Properties situated near to independent schools and university towns hold their value and are able to recover faster from a housing market downturn than average UK properties, according to the latest research by Hamptons International.

Fionnuala Earley, Hamptons International’s Director of Research in London, is to present the findings at The Millennium Hotel, Grosvenor Square on 12 May, in Hong Kong’s The Grand Hyatt on 16 and 17 May, and finally in Dubai’s The Palace hotel on 19 and 20 May. It forms part of the firm’s property exhibition, The Collection.

The research found that in England and Wales the average property price of a home within a two mile radius of an independent school considerably outstrips the national average. The average property price in 2014 stood at £173,500, whereas the average price paid for a property within a two mile radius of an independent school was a much higher £354,000. 

Additionally, properties close to an independent school have recovered quicker and stronger from the UK market downturn than the national average, with house prices near to independent schools currently standing at 116% of their 2007 market peak, in comparison to 98% for England and Wales as a whole.

A similar pattern can be seen in London’s housing market, where property prices are on average 30% higher than at their 2007 peak. For houses close to independent schools they are 66% higher. London is home to some of the world’s most prestigious independent schools, with properties close to Westminster School (which counts Nick Clegg as part of its alumni) 100% higher than the 2007 peak. Properties near to St Paul’s school are 75% above peak levels.

More than 35,000 overseas children are educated at an independent school in the UK, while 258,000 overseas students enrolled on a UK university course in 2013-14 – up 4% from the previous year.

The South and South West of England have the highest number of overseas students, while the number of overseas students receiving post-graduate degrees increased by 43% (233,245 students) in 2013-14.

The data also revealed the positive effects universities have on the local economy of the city or town they are based in, contributing to both higher house prices and rental growth. In some cases they attract large-scale employers – in particular the science parks surrounding Oxford and Cambridge – which in turn creates further demand for housing.

“The UK is recognised the world over for the quality of its education,” Fionnuala Earley said. “For many overseas parents with children studying in the UK this is a catalyst to investing in property - be this a student flat or larger family home.”

She continued: “For overseas investors looking to buy in the UK our research shows that average property prices within a two mile radius of an independent school have outperformed the national average. Similarly in university towns, capital and rental growth, boosted by student and employer demand alike, continues to offer an attractive proposition to investors.”

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