Home Buying in Bel Air>Question Details

Happy123, Home Buyer in New Jersey

WHy won't realtors answer questions regarding where the best schools are? Its very frustrating, we are

Asked by Happy123, New Jersey Tue Apr 14, 2009

moving into the area and open to anything within 30 miles from Bel Air yet are restricted in that we need the best schools for our children ages 3-10. Isn't that the relaotrs job to help us narrow down our location by directing us to the better school districts?

Help the community by answering this question:

Answers

19
Happy and Colleen, Ania is right. Legally we cannot "steer" toward school districts and we can have some serious fines levied on us if we do. It's not that we don't want to provide good service. What we can do is provide you with all the school information (district, elementary, middle and high schools for that neighborhood) and the links. You are free to investigate to your hearts content. Thank goodness the internet makes that easier to do.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Jun 18, 2009
Happy is so right on. How can you say that a realtor's relationship is minimal. What the heck do we pay you $30K for? There is no reason why you can't "suggest" some areas that might have better schools. Yes, it is relative, but you know darn well what schools clients should NOT be moving near. We are paying you for your expertise in housing and locations. If not, what are we paying you for? To push paper.
Happy, you can reach me at chenworthandsons@msn.com. I will be more than "happy" to help you. In general. we all want the best neighborhoods/schools for our kids. Realtors might be bound legally but not morally.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 27, 2009
"I guess you can afford the $12K a year tuition for private school. Some can't."

Private schools are no better but are not funded via coercive taxation.

Homeschool your kids. They will thank you for it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 27, 2009
I guess you can afford the $12K a year tuition for private school. Some can't.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 27, 2009
When researching for new schools, I always recommend clients consult a couple of sources: one is
greatschools.net, which bases most of its assessment on feedback gathered from parents. Also, here in AZ I direct my clients to the AZ Department of Education. More analytical, and comprehensive approach are yearly "school report cards" issues by theDepartment of Education. In particular, the achievement test results for language and math proficiency.
Combining these resources with personal visits to the schools and interviews with principals, should provide you with the knowledge you need in order to make the most intelligent choice for you and your family!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 27, 2009
Bel AIr has 2 different zip codes - 21014 and 21015. Parts of it is in Bel Air school district and some in C. Milton Wright, which are both great. Bel Air recently had a huge renovation. Use the School Locator on www. hcps. org to find out. I prefer upper Bel Air due to traffic. Downtown Bel Air ( near Rtes. 22 and 924) is very congested. It is near Harford Mall. Our goal is to be closest to Rte.1 (Belair Rd) so I can get to work without having to use I-95. I-95 South can be a bear if there is a problem.

What price range are you looking in? I could recommend some good neighborhoods. We are in the $350- $370K and I am struggling finding an upgrade from the house I am in now because we recently renovated it. The only plus side is the school districts and location for me.

If you want some land, try Churchville. There is an awesome neighborhood called Priestford Hills that is small and has a community lake. I am trying to get in there. The zip is 21028. Very close to APG.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 27, 2009
What is the difference between Bel Air and upper Bel Air? Aren't they the same town, or locally are they considered different areas?? Thanks
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed May 27, 2009
Forest Hill is usually in the North harford School district which would fall probably tie with #3. Churchville is C. Milton Wright but be careful because some parts fall under Aberdeen school district and the kids can be a little "rough". I am trying to move to harford county myself and am shooting for Churchville because I have family in that area. Upper Bel Air, closer to Churchville, is my second choice. I love Fallston but homes tend to be overpriced and not updated since the 70's. Education wise Fallston and Bel Air are rated tops, but I also like c. Milton Wright because (and not to sound snotty) it is a higher income level area. I live close to the city now and want a different enviroment for my kids. It is all going to come down to cost of homes.
It's not the elementary schools you have to worry about, just the high schools.
Hope this helps! if you find a house you like go onto http://www.hcps.org and use the school locator to find the school district it is in. Some of the dividing lines are crazy due to redistricting recently. Let me know if you have any other questions. I am in the same boat....
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue May 12, 2009
Thanks Colleen! How about Forest Hill and Churchville? Where would they fall in your list??
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue May 12, 2009
I can tell you in order school districts you want to get into:
1. Fallston
2. Bel Air
3. C. Milton Wright/upper Bel Air
4. Patterson Mill (new)
Stay away from Edgewood and Joppa.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 11, 2009
Happy 123,
The law prevents us from doing so, otherwise it would be considered "steering". We can however, give you websites that will answer all of the questions that you may have about a school district.
Ania
aniamiller@kw.com
Web Reference: http://www.aniamiller.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 23, 2009
Dear Happy,

When comparing individual schools, I always recommend clients consult several sources: one is
greatschools.net, which bases most of its assessment on feedback gathered from parents; useful, certainly, but not truly objective. Likewise, NJ Monthly's yearly ranking of high schools is a useful guide, but limited. More analytical -- and far more comprehensive imo (it covers all grades)-- are yearly reports issues by the New Jersey Department of Education -- in particular, the achievement test results for language and math proficiency.
Combining these resources with personal visits to the schools and interviews with principals, should provide you with the knowledge you need in order to make the most intelligent choice.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 23, 2009
Lots of good answers here already explaining why Realtors can't answer questions about "the best schools."

And the comment that "best" can vary from parent to parent is absolutely correct, as well. There's one school in Fairfax County--Thomas Jefferson--that attracts the "best and brightest" from all over. It often appears in rankings of the top 10 public schools in the country. By some definitions, it would certainly be the "best" school in the area, if your child could get into it. However, I've known parents of kids who've gone there and didn't like it at all. In fact, some transferred to other county schools. For those kids and their parents, Thomas Jefferson wasn't the "best" for them. Another example: My son went to an elementary school that has an excellent reputation. It's small, it has great parent support, and so on. Well, when my son attended the principal was...well, let's say she wasn't the best. Those six years were terrible for our son and for us. He's now attending a very, very, very large secondary school...one that some parents "fear" because it's so huge. Frankly, as parents, we think it's great. And our son loves it. (Vicky, who's commented on this question, is in the same geographic area as I am. She's right on target.) The point: There really isn't a good, universal definition of "best."

Here's a tip. After you check out sites like GreatSchools, check out the schools yourself. That's right: Visit the schools. Sit in on some classes. Stand in the hallways while classes are changing. Wait outside the school at the end of the school day. Attend a PTA meeting. That's a bit of work, true. But if you do that, you'll really be able to determine whether a school is good, and whether it's "best" for you and your child.

Hope that helps.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 23, 2009
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Burke, VA
MVP'08
Contact
Happy123,

You can use the following links to find the information that you need.

This link will provide information for all schools within Maryland, including Harford County:
http://www.marylandpublicschools.org/MSDE



This link will allow for you to find the specific schools for any specific address within Harford County.
http://www.hcps.org/Schools/schoollocator.aspx


This link will provide demographic information and assessment test results data for each of the schools within the County.
http://msp.msde.state.md.us/rschool.aspx?K=12AAAA


I can help you to find a home that otherwise meets your needs.

Have a great day and welcome to Maryland,

Ron Trzcinski
ExecuHome Realty
410-935-5844 Direct
ront@mris.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 23, 2009
Happy123 - Man, it is frustrating! I list homes in a neighborhood that boasts the highest rated schools in the country and I can't even say it!!! I am probably walking the line when I say it's "popular"; but the FACT is, it is popular, just like stainless steel appliances in a kitchen.

Imagine how annoying that is for us!. I promise, we don't do it because we want to. Try GreatSchools.com and you can see the ratings and comments from parents. You can probably also go to the county public school web site to get information on the ratings.

Hope that's helpful.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Apr 17, 2009
Hello Happy 123,
I understand your frustration, as a Realtor, we are not able to comment on schools their scores etc., if we did, we would be "swaing" a Client. What we can do is direct you to wonderful websites that are full of information that you are looking for, they even name the "blue ribbon" schools. So try to understand where we are coming from. If you have specific area in mind, please let me know I can direct you.
Ania
Web Reference: http://www.aniamiller.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 14, 2009
Sorry to say as a Realtor, we are not able to give that info out due to the fair housing laws. Resson being, what I might consider a good school may not be what you consider a good school. Also keep in mind that you never know when there will be rezoing in an area. You can check on the schools yourself, by clicking on to the local school boards web site. Hope that help. Thank you and good luck on your home search.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 14, 2009
Realtors cannot answer things that are so subjective. "Safe", "Best", "Good", are very subjective and open to interpretation. A Great school to one person - is not a great school to another. Plus; facts and statistics are often changing. One home owner/parent may tell an agent her child has the best teacher, another may say, they have the worst. It is too open for personal interpretation.

If a buyer bought a home because a Realtor said, "This is a fantastic school" - and it wasn't up to their expectations - the Realtor could find him or herself in front of the Real Estate Board and a Judge. Losing their license could be just the start of their legal problems.

I provide many resources to buyers - where they can research the facts and determine based on facts - what is a "Good School" or a "Safe Neighborhood".

Try: http://www.greatschools..net or http://www.schoolmatters.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 14, 2009
try this...

http://www.zipskinny.com it will give you details about school districts based on zip codes.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 14, 2009
Alan May, Real Estate Pro in Evanston, IL
MVP'08
Contact
Search Advice
Ask our community a question
Email me when…

Learn more

Copyright © 2016 Trulia, Inc. All rights reserved.   |  
Have a question? Visit our Help Center to find the answer