Key Variables: Type of School, Buyer Characteristics

Homes on busy streets typically fetch a discount.
Is there an equivalent discount for homes located across from a school? (which, in a way, is really just a subset of “busy street” — call it, an “intermittently busy street”).
I’ve never seen formal data on this, but I’d guess “yes.”
I’d further speculate that the discount varies depending on the following three factors:
One. School size.
Here’s my formula: Bigger = more traffic/congestion = bigger discount.
Two. Upper or lower school.
In Minnesota, at least some 16 year-olds start to drive, smoke, litter, and generally call more attention to themselves. You’d guess that being next to a teenager-filled high school would be more disruptive than being next to an elementary school — and therefore warrant a bigger discount.
Three. Combination of setback, setting, and aesthetic appeal.
At one extreme, the lower campus of the Blake School in Hopkins is straight out of a postcard: set on a picturesque hill several hundred yards removed from the street.
I doubt very much its neighbors mind that view — in fact, they might be willing to pay a premium for it!
By contrast, being near a loud, dirty, graffiti-covered school that could pass for a minimum security corrections facility would likely require a hefty discount.
Discount or Premium . . . to Whom??
As with anything in real estate, the identity of the individual client and their subjective preferences matter.
In that vein, wanna guess the ideal Buyer for a home located directly across from a good school?
A big family with lots of young kids.
P.S.: Due to federal and state anti-discrimination laws, listing agents (representing Sellers) avoid using such seemingly benign terms as “Family-sized,” “Perfect Family Home,” etc. in their marketing.
See also, “Explaining High Turnover on a Busy Street“; “Marketing a Home on a Busy Street”; “You Can’t Change a House’s Location (Can You??)”; and “Garage/Driveway Switcheroo.”

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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