Boston has been in the news lately for its ranking as the third most walkable city in the United States, but ditching the car and living in the city probably isn't a home buyer's least expensive option.
Boston is definitely walkable, and it is a great feeling walking around the waterfront, Boston Common, Newbury Street and many neighborhoods on a warm, sunny day. Waking up, leaving the car parked and walking to work certainly is appealing to many people; however, there is one problem. Real estate in Boston is really expensive.
As of February 2015, the median price of a condominium in the Back Bay was $1,450,000, and expect to pay a median price of $928,250 in the South End. The median condo price on Beacon Hill was $715,000 and $495,000 in the North End.
On the other hand, the median price of a single-family house in Andover, MA was $485,000 in February 2015. The median price in Newburyport, MA was $350,000 and $515,000 in 2014. The median price in Braintree, MA was $350,000 in February, and the median price in Natick, MA was $405,000. All four communities also have convenient access to public transportation into Boston. Move farther away from Boston and median prices decline even more.
Living in the suburbs is certainly a different lifestyle than living in the city, but the cost of living is a whole lot less.
Walk Score, a real estate Web site that promotes walkable neighborhoods, released its 2015 rankings of the most walkable cities in America on April 7, 2015. New York topped the rankings and San Francisco placed second. Boston, Philadelphia and Miami rounded out the top five.