If the schools in your area aren't healthy and flourishing, that could be driving down the value of your home. It's very common for homebuyers to want to move to places with top-notch schools. People with children will usually be especially cognizant of the quality of the schools in the areas they're targeting their search. Other buyers, aware of the impact schools can have on property value, may make it a consideration as well.
There's not an awful lot you can do to improve a school's reputation, but studies have found that schools with involved parents often perform better. And good schools -- along with concerned parents -- often coincide with wealthier neighborhoods, so it's a complicated playing field.
On the next page, we'll take a closer look at how local features, in particular fellow denizens, can detract from home value.