Tale of two developments reveals premium paid for McKinnon Secondary College zone

        It has long been understood that families pay a premium for entry into a coveted school zone. Some buyers are now even banking on an area where a campus is yet to be built.

McKinnon Secondary College — one of Victoria’s most popular state schools — is set to open a new campus, and the state government has been in talks with landowners of a large industrial estate in Bentleigh East about securing a site.

It could potentially expand the coveted enrolment zone and boost property values.

672 Centre Road, Bentleigh East, has attracted buyers who suspect the properties could be in the expanded McKinnon Secondary College zone. Photo: BCentral Group

Tal Goldman, director of developer BCentral Group, said buyers had purchased off-the-plan apartments in its CIEL project at 672 Centre Road — currently just outside the catchment — because the properties could potentially be in the zone in coming years. 

Mr Goldman said people looked for an edge when they bought in a competitive market, and buyers took into consideration a potential price boost if the school zone was expanded.

He said a few sales were already made on that basis in past few weeks.

Public schools in the ‘right’ suburbs, like McKinnon Secondary, have seen a swelling in cachet. Photo: Supplied

“We’re already finding interest from people who are buying today, who are saying ‘look, by the time this is built in two years’ time, a new zone will be designated, which will be larger’,” he said.

Mr Goldman, who also has a proposed project within the McKinnon school zone, believed a property in the zone could attract a 10 to 15 per cent premium.

He said buyers were attracted to the school zone because there was “built-in demand” whether they chose to live there or rent it out in the future.

Buying a home in a sought school zone is ideal, but so is the proximity of the property to infrastructure. Photo: Wayne Taylor

Real Estate Institute of Victoria 2016 data

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