We often speak to clients with young children and one thing they always want for the apples of their eye is to get them settled at a good school. In some cases one gets the impression that this is achieved with near military precision. You can almost picture the scene: Mum and Dad standing Napoleon-like at the breakfast table, Ofsted reports and school league tables strewn in every direction, red pens in hand, phone on stand-by - vat of coffee bubbling on the hob.

With competition for places at the most popular schools increasing, it is interesting to read research by Nationwide that shows  nearly a quarter of UK parents with children aged 5 to 16 years would be prepared to pay between 2 and 10 per cent extra on the price of a  new home to be in the catchment area of a better school. What's more, nearly one in ten (eight per cent) would be prepared to pay more than 10 per cent extra for their house.

Nearly one in five of parents (18 per cent) admit that a school league tables have influenced where they decided to live.

A spokesperson for the survey said: "Choosing the right school for your child is possibly one of the most important decisions a parent will make and it appears league tables play a significant part in that decision.

"Competition for places at the UK's best schools continues to increase and, although household finances remain stretched, it is significant that a number of parents are willing to pay more on the price of a new home to ensure their child goes to a good school."

Nationwide's research took into account the views of 1,012 UK parents with children aged 5-16 years whose child would be attending school in the next academic year.


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