Why parents of school-aged kids are the biggest losers in home-buying right now.

“Close to schools” is a key selling point on many a real-estate advertisement. Consider the added convenience, safety and sense of community, and it’s not difficult to understand why.

But, of course, all that comes at a cost.

In fact, the demand for these addresses is so high, that house prices in some school catchment areas are growing at five times that of capital cities.

The eye-opening statistic comes via Domain’s Annual School Zones Report, which analyses property market data from 4000 school catchment areas around Australia.

Domain’s Chief Data Scientist, Dr Nicola Powell, said the 2016 report paints a unique picture of supply and demand.

“Nationally, the top 10 growth rates around particular schools were up between 18-41 per cent in 2016. To put this into perspective, in the same period, Sydney house price growth was around 1.5 per cent, and Melbourne, around 7.3 per cent,” Powell said.

“While large variations across suburbs in capital cities is normal, and many factors influence price growth in a given area, this data does suggest a relationship between high price growth and school catchment zones.”

According to Powell, anecdotal evidence from industry professionals and parents suggests that residential properties in a desirable school zone can be up to 10-15 per cent higher than elsewhere.

And in some areas that’s climbing.

The top growth area in Domain’s report was around Glen Huntley Primary School in Melbourne, which experienced a substantial 41.3 per cent hike between November 2015 and October 2016.

how schools affect house prices
This property in Glen Huntley is near Australia's highest growth school catchment area. Image: Domain/Ray White.

In fact, Victorian schools took out five of the top 10 highest-growth primary school catchment areas, while New South Wales and Tasmania took two apiece, and Queensland snagged one.

Primary school zones outpaced the growth in secondary schools, where once again Victoria dominated the list with five entries. The catchment around Charles La Trobe Secondary College was the highest performer with growth of 31.9 per cent.

For detailed information about your area, see the full report here.