Do you want to live in Boston, but worry that you can't afford it? Learn the most affordable communities around Bean Town (and a few hours away). Find a real estate agent in the area who will be able to recommend the perfect community for you and your family.
If you spend any time looking at real estate for sale in the Boston area, the number of zeroes in the price of area homes will shock you. According to data from Zillow, the average sale price of a home in Boston is over $600,000. That's almost $400,000 more than the national average.
Regardless of the cost of living, there are many reasons you may want to move to Massachusetts. Maybe you are wicked smart and want to take advantage of one of Massachusetts' fine institutions of higher education. Perhaps you are a big sports fan, and you want to be close to the Celtics, Red Sox, or Patriots. Maybe you are already a northeasterner, and you can't live anywhere else in the country because no one else can understand your accent.
If you are looking for an affordable place to live in Massachusetts, read on to discover five hidden gems where real estate is more affordable than Boston's.
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Located an hour and a half to the west of Boston, Leominster is a suburban community of a little more than 40,000 people. It is about an hour away from Logan International Airport.
Although housing prices are higher than the national average, Leominster's homes are a lot cheaper than Boston's. The average price of a house in Leominster is around $263,000.
Leominster is the birthplace of Johnny Appleseed and they celebrate their native son every year at the Johnny Appleseed Arts and Cultural Festival.
The community is very family friendly even though some say it does not offer many entertainment options for young singles. There are decent public schools and plenty of parks for young children.
Head west on U.S. Highway 202 out of Leominster, and you will arrive at Franklin, which is about two hours outside of Boston.
Even though it is farther from the city, the home prices in Franklin are higher than Leominster. The average Franklin home is about $430,000.
Franklin is also smaller than Leominster, with only about 32,000 residents.
The average citizen is well educated. More than half of the residents have at least a bachelor's degree. The higher education level could be because Franklin is home to Dean College.
Franklin is a town rich in history. In fact, you may only need one or two guesses to figure out who the name of the town honors (here's a hint: it's not Aretha). Ben Franklin was so humbled by the recognition that he donated 100 books to Franklin's public library.
Ready to move to Massachusetts?
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Considered a suburb of Boston, Methuen is located an hour north of the city. It is a city surrounded by many golf courses.
Methuen is more ethnically diverse than other cities in Massachusetts. In fact, over 18% of its citizens were born outside the U.S.
The average home price is around $350,000, and the prices are rising.
There are over 7,000 students enrolled in the Methuen School District, and residents describe the area as an excellent place to raise a family.
Locals and tourists visit The Loop, a shopping and recreation area. There are many notable restaurants in The Loop as well.
Although the home prices are well above the national average, Quincy is still more affordable than Boston. Houses in Quincy average around $475,000 and the prices continue to rise.
Quincy is about 45 minutes southeast of Boston, near the Quincy Bay. Over 90,000 people are living in the area, which makes it the 8th largest community in Massachusetts.
Even though Quincy is the most expensive city on this list of “most affordable towns,” residents can easily hop up to Boston to enjoy all the city has to offer. Because of this, Quincy is popular to younger people. There are plenty of bars and other nightlife in the city. It is described as having an urban feel. Most of the city's residents rent their homes.
Westfield is near the Springfield area of Massachusetts, and this suburban-feeling community is home to over 40,000 people.
If you are okay living a couple of hours outside of Boston, you can find a home for about a third of the cost of Bean Town. Probably because of this affordability, almost 70% of the residents of Westfield own their own homes.
Westfield is home to a college by the same name and the town's residents are more educated than average. The average household income is around $62,000.
To help you make the final decision on which Massachusetts' community is right for you, visit them. Go to the parks. Look up the statistics of the public schools. Even check out the area grocery stores.
One of the best ways to learn about towns, communities, and neighborhoods is to reach out to the best local real estate agent. By asking you a few questions, a professional agent should be able to give you recommendations of Massachusetts towns that are best suited to you and your family.