Education and Real Estate
Winston Churchill once said “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.” That adage is applicable to many facets of life including, but not limited to, education and real estate. What seems an odd pairing, in fact, is correlative. They both exist, and actually thrive, partially due the success of the other.
In real estate, a family searching for a new home has a list of requirements. Top of the list is a good school district and top-ranked schools. Homebuyers value the right school for their children. Oftentimes, secondary is the home itself.
Take for example, the Long Canyon Neighborhood. This neighborhood is divided by the city of Austin. Statistically, half of the homes average 91 days on market while the other half of homes average 45 days on market. Half of the homes average sale price is approximately $750,000 while the other half of the homes average sale price is around $930,000. Based on square footage, year built, amenities, the homes are all comparable. The differential characteristic is school zone. Half of the neighborhood is located in Austin ISD and attends McCallum High School; the other half is zoned for Leander ISD and attends Vandegrift High School. Greatschools.org gives McCallum a 7 out of 10 rating while Vandegrift receives a 9 out of 10 rating. Homebuyers do their research and are aware of the rankings.
Education matters. It matters to your children and it has additional far-reaching economic affects on the surrounding community. People are attracted to good schools and are willing to pay more for homes that are zoned to attend better schools. In fact, typically, the better the school, the more the real estate appreciates.
What I value about the symbiotic nature of education and real estate is that people do not “give back” to schools for improved real estate appraisals; people give because they care. A community that values education is often comprised of people who get involved. They support their local schools through volunteer hours, active participation and donations. They help their children with homework and read to their children at night.
Hill Country Education Foundation
This is the very reason the Hill Country Education Foundation (HCEF) began. We began as a group of involved parents who wanted the best education possible for our children. We joined together because the schools in our area were new and we wanted to make a difference in the educational lives of all Four Point Area students.
HCEF encourages and supports all of our area schools to strive for excellence. Education is a gift and it is one that we can all give our children. Yet by working selflessly to give back, it is then that we realize all that we are receiving in return. It is the act of giving that is fulfilling and rewarding and HCEF appreciates everyone that supports our mission. It is just an added bonus that property values reflect such good intentions.
Gene's article first appeared in the Four Points Newspaper, Wednesday, April 20, 2016, Vol. 13, Iss. 16, pg. 2B on