What’s Going On With Schools?


There are a variety of factors that affect home values and one of the largest influencers are schools.

Test scores, graduation rates, age of facilities, breath of advanced placement classes, attendance rates, parental involvement, athletics, the list of factors which push a school’s ratings up or down is extensive and constantly growing. Our society has become increasingly transparent and these items are easier to see today than ever before.

Homes which are zoned for schools’ which fair more favorably in these areas demand a higher price and tend to sell faster than comparable homes located in other areas. There are examples across our market where it is as obvious as homes located on different sides of the street, thus different school zones mean differences in prices.

Buyers who do not have school aged children may not automatically take school zoning into consideration as a factor in their decision making. This author would suggest that all buyers at least investigate the zoned schools a home is located in, as this may affect future resell.

It should come as no surprise that when the topic of redistricting comes up, home owners and parents take notice. In recent years as leaders consider redrawing the boundary lines on the Eastern side of the Hamilton county, there was public outcry. The concerns came from both parents whose children were being affected and home owners who feared their property values would be diminished.

I am bringing this topic to the forefront today, not to cast blame or point a negative finger at any of our local school board members, central office leadership or educators. Just the opposite is my objective, to underscore the need for quality schools throughout our market area is in everyone’s best interest!

Currently in Hamilton County, a committee is in place searching for a new Superintendent and the County Commission is working with the School Board to tackle a reported $200 million dollars in deferred building maintenance. These are 2 big issues which face the system both in the short and long term. Are you informed on what’s being done to tackle these issues?

In order to keep the Realtor members informed on the status and future plans in Hamilton County Schools, Dr. Kirk Kelly, Interim Superintendent spoke to the GCAR membership on Wednesday April 5th. His presentation was through and covered the current status of the system, successes and future plans. One of the highlights was the vocational programming that has been developed, without spending millions on a new facility! If you are interested in details, ask your favorite GCAR member for a personal update.

An experienced and informed Realtor can guide you through all phases of the home ownership process, including pointing you in the right direction to learn all about the schools in your area. Again, quality schools affect all home owners.

The Greater Chattanooga Association of REALTORS is The Voice of Real Estate in Greater Chattanooga. The Association is a regional organization with more than 1,700 members and is one of more than 1,400 local boards and associations of Realtors nationwide that comprise the National Association of Realtors.

GCAR services Hamilton and Sequatchie counties in southeast Tennessee, and Catoosa, Dade and Walker counties in northwest Georgia. Go to www.GCAR.net for more information

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