Either-Or: Millis vs. the South End

Two listings. The same price. What’s worth it?

Welcome to Either-Or, where we compare two listings with the same price—one in Boston and one outside. Build your own conclusions.

south end millis either or

Photos courtesy of John Petraglia and the Hammond Group

Exorbitant housing costs in Boston are nothing new. It’s really, really expensive to live here. With tiny condos going for millions without a second thought, it’s entirely possible that Bostonians are becoming conditioned to accept outrageously high prices.

To remind you that price tags in Boston are a special breed, we’ve been presenting two homes listed at the same price from time to time. This round, it’s a battle of two classic dwellings, where the decision comes down to which type of antique home suits your fancy.

The first is beautiful colonial in Millis. It was built in 1740 and is situated along the Charles River. The second is a stately South End condo with a wealth of original architectural details. Both exude different variations of New England’s charm. They share a price tag of $599,000.

256 Pleasant Street, Millis
Price: $599,000
Size: 3,740 square feet
Bedrooms: 4
Baths: 3.5

12 Greenwich Park #2, South End
Price: $599,000
Size: 605 square feet
Bedrooms: 1
Baths: 1


The South End abode has an antique marble fireplace in the living room. The singular bedroom, while small compared to the one in the Millis house, is stunning. It has custom bookshelves and cabinetry, a marble mantle, a private deck, and a laundry closet with a washer and dryer.

Venture about an hour outside of the city and you’ll find the red riverfront house in the suburbs. The expanded colonial sits on six acres of land and boasts plenty of living space, though with five fireplaces instead of one. It measures up to 3,740 square feet—a little over six times larger than the South End unit.

The sacrificing of space could be worth it when you consider commute times. It only takes a few minutes to get to Back Bay from the South End pad along the Southwest Corridor, while the big red house is a short drive from Norfolk Station on the Commuter Rail.

Both homes do offer charming outdoor spaces. A deck off of the South End bedroom offers views of the neighborhood. The colonial, on the other hand, has an in-ground pool with a nearby cabana. Plus, in Millis, there’s the option to launch a kayak or go fishing on the riverfront.

The biggest difference between the two properties can be found in the price breakdown. The house in the country is $160 per square foot, whereas Boston’s condo is more than six times that at $990 per square foot. There aren’t significant drawbacks when it comes to either home, meaning the right choice depends on your preferred lifestyle—and how much you want to stretch your dollar.