Best Places to Live 2009
Our annual guide to Hub real estate spotlights the lucky towns emerging from the market crash with their values in tact. Plus: The smart buys for those still shopping, and sanity-saving tips for those staying put.
Good schools. Low crime. Ample leisure-time amenities. They’re all things
that make for a desired community—but it’s funny how an economic crisis moves the base line. For this year’s roll call of superlative addresses, we focused on a far more basic indicator: namely, how well a town’s home values are holding up. In these lucky burgs, there’s been less a real estate crash than a soft landing. And a favored few even got through the past year with their bubbles intact.
WITH: The smart buys for those still shopping, brokers who are still
closing deals, and local banks still writing loans.
It could be worse.
Boston magazine’s methodology and the sources behind the data.
Ten Recession-Proof Towns
Ten towns and neighborhoods where home prices are taking a pass on this whole meltdown thing.
Ten Spots Holding Steady
In today’s economy, holding steady is no small victory. And when the market finally recovers, these spots are primed to take off first.
Top Burgs for Bargain Hunters
If you’ve got the financial security—not to mention the stomach—here’s where to look for real steals.
* I. The Quaint Queue
To get the Norman Rockwell look without the markup, scout these discounted charmers.
* II. The Convenience- and-Culture Club
Enjoy big-city perks without spending big-city bucks.
* III. The Square-Footage Squad
If you’ve dreamed of more breathing room—or simply a view that’s not of your neighbor—you’ll find it here.
Five Case Studies
We analyzed the current values for specific single-family homes or condos in Cambridge, Wellesley, Allston, Scituate, and the North Shore.
Masters of the House
The region’s busiest real estate agents give us their read on the market (and a few words of wisdom, too). VIEW THE SLIDE SHOW!
Yes, You Really Can Still Get $$$
With national banks doing the bailout shuffle, the best chance for loans lies closer to home.
A sampling of area banks’ lending activity.
How to Hunker Down
Your starter home is looking like a stay-put home. (Or the empty nest is no longer yielding golden eggs.) Our tips for making do, constructively.
How’s the Market Been Treating Your Town?
A look at changes over time in median single-family home and condo prices for 155 cities, towns, and neighborhoods in and around Boston.
How the real estate market treated Greater Boston and surrounding towns last year, based on changes in median single-family home prices. Check your town!