Comparing the Cost of Living in Boston's Neighborhoods
Boston's neighborhoods are as diverse in character as they are in pricing. Citywide, the purchase price for living space per SF ranges from $143-$2,996. The highest average listing prices and purchase prices are in Back Bay, Beacon Hill, and Seaport. In Back Bay, purchase prices range from $648 to $2,996 per SF, and average listing prices are $1,226. In Seaport, the average listing price per SF is $1,409. Purchase prices start at $1,105 per SF and reach $2,198 per SF. Purchase prices in Beacon Hill range from $827 to $2,816 per SF, with an average listing price of $1,226 per SF. With pricing ranging from $694 to $2,007 per SF, the cost of real estate in Fenway and Kenmore is up towards the top too. The average listing price, which slightly exceeds $1,380, is among the highest in Boston. Purchase prices in Waterfront, Harvard Square (Cambridge), Assembly Square, and Allston are not much farther behind. Waterfront purchase prices range from $807 to $1,644 per SF. Listing prices average $1,055 per SF. In Harvard Square, listing prices have a much lower average of $843 per SF. There, the purchase price for residential real estate is $711 to $1,036 per SF. In Assembly Square, the average listing price is $827 per SF. Purchase prices start at $722 per SF and top out at $916 per SF, which is lower than the city's other premier neighborhoods. At $608 per SF, Allston has a comparatively lower starting price point for cost of real estate, but the highest prices exceed those of Assembly Square by about $40 per SF. Average listing price is $738 per SF in Allston.
Further away from the city's center, and with areas of less economic growth, prices are considerably lower. In Mattapan, for instance, the average listing price is $210 per SF. The purchase price per SF ranges from $143 to $326. The cost of living in Dorchester is comparable, with average listing prices of $316 per SF, and purchase prices ranging from $143 to $599 per SF. At $455 per SF, average listing prices in East Boston are slightly higher. Purchase prices there range from $231 to $977 per SF. In Roslindale, the average listing price per SF is just over $340. It costs between $212 and $544 to purchase property in that neighborhood. At $318 per SF, the average listing price in Hyde Park is comparable. It costs between $200 and $458 per SF to own real estate there.
Several factors contribute to the diversity in cost of living throughout the city. The size of Boston's neighborhoods influences real estate costs, as does the rate of new construction in surrounding areas. New condominiums are springing up in some of the city's wealthiest areas, which is driving the price up for other types of real estate. Proximity to jobs, conveniences like grocery stores and shopping centers, local educational institutions, and transportation centers are other key factors in Boston's real estate prices. Other aspects that influence rental and purchase rates are the abundance of parks and outdoor recreation areas, good views and skylines, education level of the resident population, and the amount of crime in the vicinity. Experts caution, however, that having a wealth of amenities is not enough for steady, sustainable growth in Boston's neighborhoods. The main consideration for forecasting current and future real estate prices depends more on the health of the local economy.