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Thinking about moving to Boston?


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uhh, why whill i get crap? and by the way thanks for calling me a sucker for sleeping at 2:30 am.  uh...i dont even know how to respond to this.  haha, whatever i guess.  can you be more clear next time you post to me thanks.

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Your comments were provocative and heartfelt. I meant that I expected some people to respond with stong opinions of their own.

I stayed up all night, in preparation for my upcoming overnight shifts. I resent other people going to sleep at night. :sick:

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Your comments were provocative and heartfelt.  I meant that I expected some people to respond with stong opinions of their own.

I stayed up all night, in preparation for my upcoming overnight shifts.  I resent other people going to sleep at night.  :sick:

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ahh, okay, well i am sorry for the tone of my response then...i guess i took it the wrong way....when i am at school i stay up for 2-3 nights in a row studying for finals and exams and writing papers, so i know exactly what you mean about resenting others for being asleep when you would kill for a little shut-eye. staying up all night starts to mess with your head after a while if you dont make up for it later in the day...oh man, school starts again soon, what am i gonna do

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  • 3 weeks later...

I am a teacher in Illinois. I like my job very much, but I do not like living in the midwest and would like to relocate to the northeast. I've visited Boston and like what the city has to offer its residents. Checking the website of Boston Public Schools, I found still open positions in Roxbury and Jamaica Plain. How serious is the problem of school violence, especially in these neighborhoods?

The website admits that 50% of BPS teachers quit within five years. Is it a bad school system overall or are there tough schools within the district?

How much should I expect to pay for a tiny 2 bedroom home?

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Roxbury is considered by many to be Boston's "ghetto" neighborhood. In reality, it is nowhere near as bad as it used to be even just a decade ago. It still is one of the higher crime neighborhoods in the city though, so I imagine that its schools aren't the safest. Then yet a lot of student in Boston do not go to school near where they live.

Not too sure about Jamaica Plain, but I wanna say its somewhat suburban in nature? Bostonians, correct me if I'm wrong, I knew someone from there and thought they had said that...

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I read the Moving to Boston thread. I know the cost of living is high, especially for housing. I live a simple life - no cable, rarely eat out, walk to save gas, so I think I can live on a teacher's salary, but becoming a home owner is an important goal. I understand that Boston's housing market is very inflated, so I'm hoping there'll be a break by the time I actually start house shopping although I hope a burst of the housing bubble doesn't cause the area too much economic grief.

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What you'll spend extra on for housing you'll save in transportation costs definitely. A monthly T pass is only $44 and that'll get you anywhere on any rapid transit line. Compare that to not only the cost of gas, but the ridiculous cost of insurance and parking in the city, and you'll literally save thousands a year. You could look into areas just outside Boston proper too and still have that urban feel and be right near a transit line. New developments going on around Wellington Station and on Revere Beach. Condos in Revere are pretty affordable, and you're right on the blue line.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I used to live in JP, as did my husband, and we both loved it. I hadn't been back there in about 4 years until about 2 weeks ago. A very good friend of mine just moved there and it's as great as I remember!

JP is a great place to live. As with anyplace, it's got its bad parts (Jackson Square) that need to be avoided. However, JP is also known for it's gorgeous huge Victorian homes that have been split into apartments, and of course we can't forget Jamaica Pond and the lively Center Street. Center (and even South) Street is filled with shops and eclectic restaurants.

Transportation in JP consists of the #39 bus (which used to be the green line) that runs along Center Street, as well as the orange line that takes you from downtown to Forest Hills in 20mins max.

My old roommate used to teach at English High in JP, and while of course there was crime there, she did enjoy it. I have a friend that teaches middle school in Hyde Park (between JP and Roslindale), she has been there for at least 6 years and has NO plans on changing schools anytime soon.

In terms of housing, my friend that just moved there is renting a huge apartment (huge for Boston standards) - I think it's about 1300-1400sf, 2br, kitchen, lr, dr, 1 bath, driveway and small backyard for $1500/month - a steal! I am sure you can find something smaller/cheaper if that would better suit your needs.

There is a Coldwell (I think?) right on Center Street that a bunch of people I know (including myself) has rented from. You might also want to consider living in Roslindale Center; the bus runs out there and might be cheaper than JP, however there is not as much liveliness and neighborhood-y feel as JP.

Good luck!

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I agree with Cotuit. This is something that comes up all of the time when talking with family (my family is basically all suburban people). There are no "scary" areas of Boston. There are some that are poorer than others, but they aren't ghettos and they aren't bad at all.

I agree. Boston is a great city that more suburbanites should get to know. We need better schools though.

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  • 1 month later...

North End a ghetto? You might think that based on population density alone. Mattapan, Roxbury - those are the closest thing Boston's got to "ghettos".

I've only read the first and last pages of this thread. How long ago did the folks who were moving get phased out?

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  • 1 month later...

The North End is farrrrr from a ghetoo!

I moved to Boston from down South 5 years ago. This thread is extremely entertaining to me.

To those who say Boston has no ghettos, I invite you to take a stroll down Shirley Ave. in Revere, or jump off the Red line at Stab'n Kill stop. Take a drive around Mattapan. :rofl: It's delusional to not recognize that some of these places are pretty rough. I would agree to the extent that Boston is better than most in this regard, but that's really, in my opinion, because of skyrocketing real estate costs in the city. Folks are trying to rejuvenate bad neighborhoods because they can't afford to do anything else, and still stay in the city.

After reading the thread, I'm not clear on who has, and has not, actually landed here. So, I'll give up my advice.

Don't rent a place in any of the following towns. Mattapan, East Boston, Revere, Lynn, Saugus,.... unless you know damn good and well what part of those places you're headed to. A good for instance is Revere. You can rent a safe and clean, quiet, place in Revere. You can live a block away and get knifed your first time waiting for the bus.

Don't take the chance until you know the place. Rent someplace in Somerville, or Malden, or Cambridge if you can afford it. Look at the Fens, or JP.

Whatever you do, don't look south of Boston. The commute will chew you up and spit you out.

If you like to have a drink, make sure you're within walking distance of the T. That's crucial in Boston.

My two cents. :whistling:

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  • 1 month later...

First let me say thank you in advance.

I will be relocating to the Boston area from KY in a month to finish cosmetology school. I am a single mom of three and I am a bit nervous, but I welcome change.

The school I will be attending has two locations in MA, one in Malden and the other in Boston. By research I know that Malden is within minutes from Boston. What I need is to see greater Boston through your eyes. I have a housing choice voucher (Section-8) for those of you who are not familiar with this, it is a subsidy program that pays a portion of your rent. Since I am in school and not working at the time, Section-8 will pay majority of my rent. My rent cannot exceed $1500 if utilities are included for a three bedroom. If utilities are not included, my rent cannot exceed $1400. I have two vehicles so transportation isn't a problem.

I have narrowed down the cities in which are available to me given my situation:

Chelsea

Everett

Revere

Saugus

Wakefield

Watertown

Winchester

Lexington

Malden

Melrose

Somerville

Any advice is needed. Keep in mind I have three small children so I would prefer to be in a nice community.

Thanks guys

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I have two vehicles so transportation isn't a problem.

You could have 10 cars, transportation is always a problem in Boston, especially by car. That's why, even though Watertown and Lexington are by far (well not too far, but clearly in the lead) the best communities of your list, if you will be going to school in Malden and/or Boston, I would suggest to you to live in Malden. Malden isn't the most wonderful town in the metro area, but you could do a lot worse (like Chelsea, Everett, or Revere). Malden has a stop on the orangeline, so if you ended up going to school in Boston, you could easily take the T there, and believe me, you will not want to drive to Boston, and you wouldn't want to be driving between the outlying towns, like from Lexington to Malden. Traffic sucks.

The schools would be best in Watertown, Lexington, or Winchester, but I don't think the schools in Malden are terrible. I'm not really up on schools though.

Somerville, Malden, and Revere would offer the best transit into Boston, Watertown isn't bad, but you'd have to take a bus to the subway. The other towns would present issues trying to get to Boston by T.

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Thanks for your advice. Like I said, I need to see it through your eyes. I had no idea that having a vehicle would be pretty much useless when commuting. God I wish there were an easier way.

Any comments on Saugus? The gentleman at the PHA office was so helpful to me in answering my questions. He even gave my name and number to a prospective landlord that called me and told me about a duplex he had.

Still trying to think of the best way to make the relocation go better since I have to come there first and find a place as oppose to already having something lined up.

Thanks and more comments encouraged!!! :)

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Any comments on Saugus?

Saugus is a pretty nice community, but it doesn't have very good transit links to Boston. If you end up commuting to Malden, Saugus wouldn't be too bad. It would be better than commuting by car from a community further west like Watertown or Lexington.

The thing about the Boston area, is though two communities may look close together, the connections between them are often circuitous. There aren't wide boulevards that directly connect one community to another. The roads in the area date back to the colonial area and some are litterally built atop old cow paths and Indian trails. They were laid out for walking or horseback, not automobiles. Most roads are two lanes and meandering, and all go through congested town centers.

This page at the MBTA site has a collection of maps of the various areas around Boston. This can give you an idea of how well connected you would be to the city by public transit in various areas.

If you have an affordable housing option in Saugus and are planning to go to school in Malden, I'd say go for it, if only for the peace of mind of knowing that you have a place. Commuting by car from Saugus to Malden wouldn't be too terrible. After a year of living in the area you can get a better idea of where you might want to live and move.

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Thanks Cotuit for your help and responses. I'm glad your around. Not much input from other Bostontonians, but I am still grateful!!!

I had another landlord contact me via Craiglist. His property is in Bradford (Haverhill), MA. I saw pics of the house, its a one family house. It almost seems to good to be true. And you know how the old saying goes.

I really would appreciate yours or anyone elses input on this. I don't want to get taken and I know that me relocating the way that I am, I would be considered an easy target.

Again, I would have to commute from Bradford to Malden. The landlord advised me against Malden, he said the schools (public) and crime rate was a bit too much in his opinion. He said there is the T there in Bradford. He said it was a nice community " a fancy part of Haverhill".

Thanks you guys

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Thanks Cotuit for your help and responses. I'm glad your around. Not much input from other Bostontonians, but I am still grateful!!!

I had another landlord contact me via Craiglist. His property is in Bradford (Haverhill), MA. I saw pics of the house, its a one family house. It almost seems to good to be true. And you know how the old saying goes.

I really would appreciate yours or anyone elses input on this. I don't want to get taken and I know that me relocating the way that I am, I would be considered an easy target.

Again, I would have to commute from Bradford to Malden. The landlord advised me against Malden, he said the schools (public) and crime rate was a bit too much in his opinion. He said there is the T there in Bradford. He said it was a nice community " a fancy part of Haverhill".

Thanks you guys

Hi Lesley

Some things for you to consider.

Of the cities you list, you should consider Melrose.

Melrose is the next town north of Malden. Its a very nice town and the schools are several steps above Malden. There is rental housing stock available. I do not know any sources of Section 8 housing. You can easily drive to the Cosmetology schools in Malden and parking is available. Or you can easily catch the Bus on Main St in Merlose for a quick trip to Malden. There is a subway stop on the Malden/Melrose Border. It is known as Oak Grove. That will get you quickly into Boston. And Oak Grove is accesible by bus or you can park at Oak Grove. If you want to park at Oak Grove, you do have to be there by 7 AM as the lot fills up quickly.

The demographics are changing rapidly in Malden and the schools are problematic. If you do decide to rent in Maden, you should be in what is known as West Malden, Maplewood or Forestdale.

As for Haverhill, that is just too far out for you. Yes, Bradford is the nicest part of Haverhill but you will have to commute via commuter rail to North Station in Boston. Commuter rail from Haverhill is much more expensive as it very far out and you will be coming in very early. Also, you choices (time wise) for commuting in and out will be limited. If you are closer in, you have more options via bus and subway.

Also, you will have limited choices for getting around in Haverhill and a lot of the suburban type shopping areas are closer to the 495 Belt than in Haverhill. Yes, Haverhill is up and coming but also has it share of issues. Its really not much different than Malden.

Avoid Everett if you can. And Chelsea as well. Chelsea is very problematic with gang activity. Revere is OK but you have to be close to the Blue Line.

Wakefield is a very nice town and the next town north of Melrose. It has Commuter Rail into North Station or you can change to the Orange Line (on some trains) at Malden Center.

Winchester is a wonderful community. If you find Sec Housing in that town. it will not be within walking distance of the one commuter rail station and there is no parking.

Lexington is even a better town but you will find commuting into Boston difficult at best and really via car.

Somerville, as close to Boston as it is, will be a difficult commute. It is the one city in the metro that has no subway. That is yet another discussion topic. Subway is coming but not for at least 7 - 14 years.

Saugus is a very nice area but it is also very suburban. While close to Malden, it is difficult at best to commute to Malden and you will need a car. The schools are equal to Melrose.

I do know a landlord in Malden and I think he has a place available in Maplewood. It might only be a one bedroom but he is a good and reputable landlord. I am not sure if the place is Section 8 qualified but I will ask him.

Pesonally, I live in Melrose and find it to be a most charming little town. You woould feel very safe here and yet be close to everything you need and want.

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Well I do have a vehicle so I wouldn't see the use of the transit system. Unless you guys know something I don't???

I didn't even consider Melrose, but I will. This is soooo hard. Bradford is 38 minutes to Malden according to mapquest. I don't know how the traffic would be during 8 and 9 am and 3 and 4 pm.

The landlord said the house is heated by oil. We don't have that in KY, its just electric or gas. The house is colonial style house with hard wood floors so I don't know how much his would cost in the winter.

I will be moving next weekend. I will stay in a hotel until we find a place so hopefully with the info here I will be able to narrow my search.

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