Best Schools and Affordable Homes: Minneapolis-Area School District Tops ZipRealty’s List
Two Texas metros are also among the most affordable places with the best schools.
EMERYVILLE, Calif., May 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — ZipRealty, Inc. (http://www.ziprealty.com) (NASDAQ: ZIPR), the leading online residential real estate brokerage and technology provider, has released its first annual ranking of the Best Places for Families to Live: Top School Districts with Most Affordable Housing. The public school rankings were compiled by factoring each school district’s School Score on ZipRealty.com with median price per square foot in that district. To be considered, at least 10 home sales must have closed in that school district over the course of 2012.
“Lots of factors – not just price per square foot – go into determining home values,” says ZipRealty CEO and President Lanny Baker. “Among the most important of these factors for many families today is the quality of local schools in relation to the price of their local real estate. In our ongoing effort to help home buyers make important decisions, we are thrilled to bring these two sets of data together,” he notes.
ZipRealty’s proprietary School Score ratings measure the performance of each school district, including elementary, middle and high schools on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest. ZipRealty calculates the School Score based on test-score data as well as student/teacher ratios, says Jamie Wilson, Senior Vice President of Technology.
“When searching for a home on ZipRealty.com, interested buyers can search by the name of the school district on the site’s home page,” says Mr. Wilson. “Then, when you find a home listing you’re interested in, you can view the Schools Information section to assess the quality of each school or an entire school district, and then access their School Score.”
The Schools Information section also features the student/teacher ratio of each school, along with specific test scores on a variety of subjects such as math, science, language arts and others, depending upon the state.
The Best Places for Families to Live: Top School Districts with Most Affordable Housing are: 1) Westonka Public Schools, Minneapolis area: School Score 9.6/Median Price per SF $112 2) Geneva Community Unit School District 304, Chicago area: School Score, 9.4/Median Price per SF $123 3) Lake Oswego School District, Portland area: School Score 9.6/Median Price per SF $167 4) Tredyffrin/Easttown (T/E) School District, Philadelphia area: School Score 9.2/Median Price per SF $177 5) Eanes Independent School District, Austin area: School Score 9/Median Price per SF $207 6) Briarcliff Manor Union Free School District, Westchester, NY: School Score 9.9/Median Price per SF $250 7) Highland Park Independent School District, Dallas area: School Score 9.2 /Median Price per SF $287 8) Mercer Island School District 400, Seattle area: School Score 9.3/Median Price per SF $295 9) Lexington School District, Boston area: School Score 9.7/Median Price per SF $321 10) Irvine Unified School District, Orange County, CA: School Score 9.2/Median Price per SF $328
Located in the western suburbs of Minneapolis, the Westonka Public Schools have nearly 160 teachers, serve 2,200 students and “offer lower class sizes and individual attention along with a wide variety of co-curricular opportunities and a full portfolio of honors and college-level courses,” according to the district’s website.
“When we say Westonka Schools offer small school advantages with big school opportunities for real-life success stories, it’s not just a tagline,” says Superintendent Kevin Borg. “We believe that having this focus is the key to ensuring the success of each and every Westonka student. Our district has found success year after year by offering small class sizes and personalized learning along with the same advanced courses and extracurricular opportunities seen in larger districts. And with the lowest effective tax rate in Hennepin County and test scores consistently ranking among the top in Minnesota, Westonka Schools are a great return on investment,” he adds.
“People continue to relocate to the Minneapolis-St. Paul area because of affordable housing prices, quality school systems, its many cultural activities, such as a booming music scene, and the burgeoning economic sector,” says Mr. Baker. In fact, the local economy is the strongest it’s been since the first quarter of 2007, according to Marcus & Millichap, a commercial real estate services firm. “Through Q1, the metro was 10,000 jobs shy of the all-time employment high recorded in the first three months of 2007,” the firm’s Q1 apartment research report says. “This has sparked demand for all types of residential housing,” notes Mr. Baker.
For a complete list of the Best Places to Live: Top School Districts with Most Affordable Housing, contact Stacey Corso at email@example.com.
About ZipRealty, Inc.
ZipRealty is a leading national real estate brokerage and provider of proprietary technology and comprehensive online marketing tools for the residential real estate brokerage industry. For home buyers and sellers who increasingly want control, choice and a seamless, customized service, ZipRealty offers Internet-enabled, state-of-the-art technology and complete access to accurate, timely information via their website and mobile applications, which real estate professionals can combine with their own local knowledge and personal expertise to offer an exceptional start-to-finish client experience. For real estate professionals who seek more productive ways to conduct business, ZipRealty provides technology and online marketing tools to enhance their online sales channel, including lead generation, conversion and service of their clients. ZipRealty’s technology and online marketing products serve its full-service, owned-and-operated residential real estate brokerage business in 19 markets nationwide, as well as its Powered by Zip network of leading third-party local brokerages in 16 markets.
Media Contact: Stacey Corso
SOURCE ZipRealty, Inc.