What Does It Really Cost to Live in Boston?

What Does It Really Cost to Live in Boston?

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Tara Bellucci
Aug 6, 2012
Setting up a new home is hard enough in your current city, but what if you're planning an out of town move? We're here to help, and our first insider report is on Boston. From necessities to entertainment, from renting to buying, here's what it really costs to live in the Hub.
Essentials & EntertainmentMilk: $2.99/gal regular; $3.79/half gal organic • Monthly MBTA pass: $70 (subway & local bus) • Gas: $3.61/gal regular • Movie ticket: $12/adult • Restaurant Dinner: $33.56/person • Beer (draft pint): $5.50 • Cocktail: $12
Note: I chose homes in Back Bay, Somerville, and Brookline because they represent three different price points and vibes, and many of greater Boston's neighborhoods can be compared to these three in terms of cost (Beacon Hill is similar to Back Bay, Jamaica Plain is similar to Somerville, etc).
Housing for Rent Studios: Median Rents: • Back Bay: $1,400 • Somerville: $1,100 • Brookline: $1,150 Examples: • Back Bay: 1 bath, 420 square feet, $1,400 • Somerville: 1 bath, 300 square feet, $1,025 • Brookline: 1 bath, 350 square feet, $1,200 One Bedrooms: Median Rents: • Back Bay: $1,950 • Somerville: $1,200 • Brookline: $1,600 Examples: • Back Bay: 1 bath, 750 square feet, $1,950 • Somerville: 1 bath, 850 square feet, $1,200 • Brookline: 1 bath, 700 square feet, $1,600 Two Bedrooms: Median Rents: • Back Bay: $2,800 • Somerville: $1,400 • Brookline: $2,000 Examples: • Back Bay: 1 bath, 950 square feet, $2,850 • Somerville: 1 bath, 945 square feet, $1,500 • Brookline: 1 bath, 757 square feet, $1,950 Luxury Buildings: Median Rents: • Back Bay: $3,500 • Somerville: $2,400 • Brookline: $3,000 Examples: • Back Bay: 1 bed, 1 bath, 700 square feet, $3,295 • Somerville: 1 bed, 1 bath, 604 square feet, $2,400 • Brookline: 2 beds, 1 bath, 789 square feet, $3,030
Housing for Sale One Bedrooms: Median Prices: • Back Bay: $445,000 • Somerville: $307,000 • Brookline: $356,000 Examples: • Back Bay: 1 bath, 627 square feet, $424,000 • Somerville: 1 bath, 630 square feet, $329,000 • Brookline: 1 bath, 708 square feet, $385,000 Two Bedrooms: Median Prices: • Back Bay: $754,000 • Somerville: $386,000 • Brookline: $594,000 Examples: • Back Bay: 2 baths, 1,008 square feet, $679,000 • Somerville: 1 bath, 978 square feet, $399,000 • Brookline: 2 baths, 1,313 square feet, $549,000 Single Family Homes: Median Prices: • Back Bay: $3,400,000 • Somerville: $555,000 • Brookline: $2,275,000 Examples: • Back Bay: 7 beds, 3.5 baths, 4,440 square feet, $2,895,000 • Somerville: 5 beds, 1 bath, 1,801 square feet, $539,900 • Brookline: 6 beds, 4.5 baths, 5,379 square feet, $1,999,000 Luxury Buildings: Median Prices: • Back Bay: $2,100,000 • Somerville: $695,000 • Brookline: $835,000 Examples: • Back Bay: 2 beds, 2 baths,1,372 square feet, $2,050,000 • Somerville: 2 beds, 3.5 baths, 2,025 square feet, $689,900 • Brookline: 2 beds, 2 baths, 1,141 square feet, $850,000
Bostonians, feel free to share your experiences in the comments! (Images: Lead image via Shutterstock, Property for sale photos MLSPIN via Rob Cohen, Property for rent photos via Zillow)
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