House prices have long been linked to the academic reputation of local schools - now a real estate firm reckons sporting prowess may also have a big effect.

Bayleys Realty Group found average property values in Auckland were easily outpaced by values in the zones feeding six Auckland state schools whose students won top sports awards.

Residential property values in Greater Auckland rose 21 per cent between March 2015 and March 2017 - from $695,000 to $840,000 - but values in the six schools increased by up to 41 per cent.

Bayleys national residential manager Daniel Coulson said a school's sporting prowess often translated into academic successes.


"Sport is a pillar of a school's culture and ethos. So it's no coincidence that the better performing sports schools also tend to have higher academic achievement standards too.

"Combined, these two benchmarks are attractive factors for parents buying homes in the school's feeder suburbs - especially when you consider that for many youngsters now, sport has every possibility of sustaining careers in the same way that a generation or two ago students aspired to be doctors, lawyers or accountants.

"It's why home buyers are prepared to pay more for a home in one suburb so their children can attend the high school servicing that location," Coulson said.

The leading schools by the number of accolades achieved in the 2016 Young Sportsperson of the Year awards, and their catchment suburbs included:

•Rangitoto College: Mairangi Bay, Murrays Bay and Campbells Bay.

•Westlake Boys High School: Forrest Hill, Milford and Sunnynook.

•Westlake Girls High School: Forrest Hill, Hillcrest, Takapuna and Sunnynook.

•Takapuna Grammar School: Devonport and Takapuna.

•Epsom Girls Grammar: Remuera, Parnell, Mt Eden and Epsom.

•Mt Albert Grammar School: Kingsland and Mt Albert.


Homes near Rangitoto College, in Mairangi Bay, Murrays Bay and Campbells Bay, soared by 41 per cent in the two-year period.

The median sale price of properties in Mairangi Bay rose by $420,000 to hit the $1.4m mark, while houses in Campbells Bay are going for almost $1.9m.

Notable alumni from Rangitoto College include former Tall Blacks star Sean Marks, who was the first Kiwi to play in the NBA. Marks has gone on to become general manager of the Brooklyn Nets.

House prices in surrounding suburbs for the other five schools identified rose by as much as 34 per cent.

The most significant increase in median sale prices, since year ending March 2015, was in Remuera where prices have risen by $477,250 to $1.8m.

Coulson said while real estate agents in central Auckland often espouse the phrase 'double grammar zone' in their marketing speak for homes in Epsom, Newmarket, Remuera and Parnell, the REINZ data highlights that zoning is just as relevant in Auckland's East Coast Bays, where four of the six top sporting schools are located.

Zoning is also key around Kingsland, Mt Albert and Mt Eden for families looking to get their kids into Mt Albert Grammar, former high school of rugby star Sonny Bill Williams.

Westlake Boys was the highest performing school of the top six in the 2016 sport awards, taking home eight prizes including young sportsman of the year.

The North Shore school produced the likes of America's Cup skipper Dean Barker, former All Black Luke McAlister and basketball player Corey Webster.

This was closely followed by Mt Albert Grammar - whose famous sporting students include Sonny Bill Williams and Maria Tutaia - and Epsom Girls Grammar, which collected five awards each for their top athletes.

Coulson said it was no surprise that suburbs with much of the city's cheapest median priced housing - including Otara, Manurewa, Mangere East, Otahuhu, Swanson, Birkdale, Papakura and Three Kings - had little representation in awards.

"A higher disposable household income not only sustains the ability for parents to fund a teenager's high performance sporting ambitions, but also enables the family to service the higher mortgage necessary to buy into those suburban locations. So the two factors are intricately linked."

Massey University Pro Vice-Chancellor - College of Humanities and Social Sciences - and Distinguished Professor Paul Spoonley, said a school's reputation no longer simply revolved around it academic success.

Sporting success was also a growing factor in how attractive a school could be to parents and potential students.

"What [parents] are also looking for are a range of additional success elements including sports and arts.

"The second thing is that incoming immigrants into Auckland already have educational qualifications that are higher than local New Zealand residents. They will target high-performing, high-decile schools and will look to buy in those areas because that's the schools they want their children to go to."

Spoonley said many of those reputable schools tended to be in established areas where there has been more competition for housing.

Private fee-paying and religious denomination schools were excluded from the analysis as they are exempt from the Government's precise school zoning requirements - meaning pupils can attend these schools from virtually anywhere in the city.