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Old 12-30-2013, 07:28 PM
Location: Bridgeville
2 posts, read 3,832 times
Reputation: 13


Hi all!

If my name wasn't a dead giveaway, I'm a programmer from Pittsburgh . I recently took a job in Boston, am trying to figure out where to live, and figured this forum might have some good advice!

Some quick details about me:
  • I'm going to be working downtown, close to city hall
  • I tend to be pretty frugal with my money (I did receive a noticeable pay increase, but I'm told it will be quite balanced by the cost of living here)
  • I'm considering getting rid of my car and using the T to get around
My priorities for somewhere to live are:
  • Fun restaurants and bars (not frat bars but still fun, single-filled areas)
  • Plenty of people in their twenties/early thirties
  • Easy access to the T
  • Accessible grocery store
  • Proximity to work, although I believe I can make due with a longer T ride (since I can read or program on the train)
(If you've been to Pittsburgh, envision Squirrel Hill/Regent Square)

I've talked to several Bostoners (Bostonians? Bostonites?) during my last visit, and plenty of them recommended Somerville/Davis Square, an area that I absolutely loved. Fun local restaurants, plenty of attractive ladies, and very close to the Red Line. Unfortunately, no one I spoke with had any other suggestions for great areas, and I want to make sure I don't miss out on a potentially-great place to live, especially if it's closer to downtown.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions!
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Old 12-30-2013, 08:45 PM
1,769 posts, read 2,385,170 times
Reputation: 1555
Davis Sq. is good recommendation in general, but it will be expensive. I am not sure about your budget. Budget will determine where you can land, alone or needing roommates.

Another great area is Coolidge Corner/Brookline Village, sought after and expensive.

Allston and Brighton are decent picks,but might have bit more students. Some other people on this board can point out where to look and best neighborhoods in that area.

JP or Jamaica Plain area that is very popular with young people as well, not your ideal commute.

Also there is Watertown, Waltham bit further out west but with plenty of singles. Commute will be longer, rent possibly lower.

In terms of your commute anything on Red Line is the best. And therefore Area of Davis Sq., Teele Sq.(only area walkable to Davis Sq. red line station) and Porter Sq. are probably awesome if you can swing them.

East Arlington, near Alewife is also good for you as well.

People will also recommend Quincy, which is on Red line to the South of Boston, is cheaper and has things you are looking for.

Malden is much cheaper with very decent access to Boston. Not as "posh" as some other suggestions.Has some life downtown, but is mostly poorer immigrants town, with some younger professionals moving in as they are priced out of other areas.

The only other two areas very close to downtown Boston are East Boston and Winthrop, but I am not sure that you will find what you are looking for.

This is general advice, without budget not able to help you better. Hope it helps.
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Old 12-30-2013, 09:04 PM
Location: a bar
2,545 posts, read 4,853,702 times
Reputation: 2588
Although probably a little more $ than Davis Sq, I'd suggest looking into either Charlestown or South Boston (aka Southie). Both have what you're looking for. You could even walk to work from Charlestown.
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Old 12-31-2013, 06:41 AM
152 posts, read 316,872 times
Reputation: 134
Somewhere in Sommerville will probably be the cheapest area to live that is still close to the T and downtown. The green line is extending to union sq. in sommerville in a few years and new apartment buildings are being built. Lots of young adults in Union Sq. Sommerville (and Union Sq. Allston) . Anywhere in Cambridge, Sommerville or Allston
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Old 12-31-2013, 07:24 AM
Location: Camberville
11,394 posts, read 15,991,510 times
Reputation: 18031
As a fairly techy woman in her mid 20s with a lot of techy friends of both genders from 20s to mid 30s, Somerville (especially Davis Square) is where it's at. Also look around Porter Square which is in between Harvard and Davis - quick walk to either, perhaps a bit cheaper rent, and close to the T. Union Square is really great as well, but is a bit of a longer walk to the T (although closer to the Orange line which is probably better for your commute) or requires taking a bus if weather is bad. It sort of depends on what your priorities are there. Union Square also the location for Artisian's Asylum, which is a great way to meet geeky singles (check out some of their classes: Artisan's Asylum Inc ). Don't let the name fool you! While there's a lot of arts classes, the real lifeblood of Artisan's Asylum is working with circuits, robots, bikes, and sodering things. When you look at the background of most of the teachers, they're all mathematicians, programmers, and pursue other nerdy deskjobs while building trebuchets, bikes, and robots in their spare time. I always recommend nerdy newcomers to check it out.

I've noticed among my friends that when we relocated to the area, we started out close to Davis Square (often with roommates, which is common here into your 30s) and then moved further out once we established ourselves. For instance, I now live in Medford (cheaper rent and easier parking) but will likely be moving to Waltham, Watertown, or Newton in the next year or so.

Personally, I'm a big fan of Malden but it's not a popular choice to meet people. If you are looking for more bang for your buck and are willing to go into Boston or Somerville to socialize, take a gander at Malden Center. It's on the up and up, has easy access to the orange line, has some great restaurants and bars downtown, and a city government that is really trying to be responsive to the community. You're not going to find a big singles bar culture there, but frankly, you're not going to find that in most of Boston once you get out of the student ghettos (i.e. Allston, Brighton).
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Old 12-31-2013, 07:35 AM
32,716 posts, read 22,656,169 times
Reputation: 29772
Davis/Porter area is great. I would have to co-sign that. I live in Somerville, but not that area anymore. I did in my early 30s and it was a great fit, I migrated (several stops of the years) toward the Union Sq/Sullivan area.
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Old 12-31-2013, 08:12 AM
Location: Quincy, Mass. (near Boston)
2,049 posts, read 3,460,267 times
Reputation: 1618
South Boston is almost a no brainier. Perhaps Quincy also but not as many yuppies in Quincy at all, but there are yuppie-type rentals and condos dotting its landscape in the last ten years or so.

Maybe Savin Hill in Dorchester if you want roommates (not many apt. buildings).

Even a studio in an older building listed on CL over the years in Malden has jumped from around $850 to $1050 in the last couple of years; Malden is not a secret to everyone nowadays, though probaby not what you're looking for 100% -- but it may work for a year or two.

Parts of Medford close to the Somerville line may be an option, as is East Arlington as someone mentioned.

Watertown has an express bus on weekdays and may work along with parts of Newton or Brighton. Not all houses in Newton are fancy; in fact, there are roomie situations in the less desirable pockets there.

Good luck!.
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Old 12-31-2013, 10:56 AM
Location: Everett, Massachusetts
315 posts, read 506,657 times
Reputation: 553
I'd say that Brookline and Brighton/Allston are probably the most similar to Squirrel Hill and its environs as Boston area neighborhoods go. That said, I would lean toward Somerville as many others have suggested. Davis Square can be pricey. Union Sq might be a bit less, though it has been moving rapidly upscale over the past 10 years. I live in Everett and love the Medford/Malden/Everett area, but they might be too quiet for someone in his twenties who is new to Greater Boston. That said, you get a lot more for your money out this way. Good luck with your search!
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Old 12-31-2013, 11:28 AM
Location: Boston, MA
7,854 posts, read 6,805,356 times
Reputation: 6573
Not Brighton.
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Old 01-06-2014, 06:16 PM
2 posts, read 2,937 times
Reputation: 16
Somerville is a definite for the techies. Inman sq is also one of my favorite places too. Great info from the previous posters.
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