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Old 09-28-2017, 06:07 PM
 
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Hi all,

Looking for some advice. We are a family of four - mom/dad/toddler (4 years old) and expecting early 2018. We've been in NYC all our lives - we grew up in NYC and went to school here as well. So, we are not at all familiar with Boston.

My husband was offered a job in Downtown Crossing and have no idea where to start in terms of housing. Looking to rent for a few years before settling down. Our priority is finding a good private preschool and private elementary school for my son, near my husband's work, decent housing/space, and accessibility. We are looking to spend up to $8-$9k/month on rent. Where should we start looking? Do most apartments/housing come with parking at our monthly budget? We also want to be in a good public school district as back up as well.

Additionally, how much do nannies cost for full time for 2 children? What's the going rate? Live in vs live out?

Thanks so much!!
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Old 09-28-2017, 07:07 PM
 
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How long of a commute are you/husband willing to do? Are you looking for an urban or suburban experience?

Best public schools schools are in Lexington, Wellesley, and Newton I believe. Brookline is good too. Brookline is the most urban of the four. Lots of private schools near there as well (I believe Tom Brady's kids go to Dexter Southfield.) You wouldn't have any trouble with parking in L, W, and N. In Brookline you'd have to make sure you had a driveway as there is no overnight street parking. You could also look into Cambridge. Parking is tough there.

If you want to be in a good school district, you won't want to be in Boston proper. There are some decent schools in BPS but I'm not sure they'd meet your standards. You could afford a 3 bed in some of the luxury apartment buildings downtown if you decided to live there. They don't necessarily come with parking. Garage spaces downtown run about $400/month.

Though Brookline is on the T, in some ways Newton or Wellesley would be better because they are on the commuter rail which is a more comfortable and, at least from Newton, probably faster ride.

I think the going rate for nannies is around $20-$25/hour over the table. I don't think live in is that common unless you do an au pair situation.
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Old 09-28-2017, 07:09 PM
 
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Being from Manhattan, are you looking for something sort of similar? Meaning more of a central city neighborhood. If so, the first areas you might start looking would be Back Bay, Beacon Hill, the South End, and Bay Village. Maybe also the North End, Charlestown, South Boston (a different section from the South End, despite the similarity in names), and possibly the Central Square and Kendall Sq. areas in Cambridge across the river.

I live in the suburbs, and don't know a lot of details about life in the city. I can tell you that I'm pretty sure that choosing a school district for a public school as backup may not be a simple matter in Boston. It's my understanding that children don't necessarily attend schools in a local district, but can be assigned to schools anywhere in Boston no matter where they live. I believe there is some sort of lottery or something of the sort (not sure, but I think it's something like that) to determine school assignments, but you'll need that info from someone more familiar with the city proper of Boston than I am.

Supposedly it's possible to learn how to work the school assignment system so you're more likely to get your kids into the schools of your choice, but again, you need info from someone really familiar with this, which I'm not. I just wanted to start you with some basic info on neighborhoods to consider, and to clue you in that where you live, at least in the city of Boston itself, does not necessarily determine where your children go to school.
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Old 09-28-2017, 10:33 PM
 
Location: New England
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It's hard to compare Boston to Manhattan. With that budget you can live in any Boston neighborhood. If you want good public schools, I'd stick to Brookline. With that budget you could find a nice house there.

With 9k budget you can easily find parking in Brookline.
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Old 09-28-2017, 11:01 PM
 
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To build on Ogre's and other posters' points, you have several good walk to work opportunities in Boston proper if the job is in the downtown area. Beacon Hill is closest. Very historic, charming, like some West Village streets--very old rowhouses, few elevator-type apartment buildings even of the prewar variety and only one I can think of that's postwar. Back Bay is the other traditional elite walk to work neighborhood. Basic housing stock there is slightly newer (post-1850) townhouses and many apartment buildings among the mix with nice layouts. South End is a gentrified neighborhood also full of old brick townhouses and many newly built condo and/or rental buildings. I think all three of these have many affluent families who do private schooling. Some will do public schools at least in elementary but you can't depend on entry to a well regarded zone school the way you can in New York. The old west end was knocked down in a mid-century urban renewal project and replaced with high-end apartments-- Charles River Park. Don't know what the community is like there but it's also walkable to downtown. The downtown Waterfront and Fort Point Channel area has desirable housing in a variety of buildings, mostly old commercial buildings on or near the wharves repurposed for residential use. The North End, also walkable, is mostly old walkups, like the old-law tenements in NY--it's full of character but maybe not the kinds of layouts you're looking for. Many more opportunities in the next ring beyond -- in the Fenway, in Brookline, Cambridge, Charlestown, South Boston -- and maybe one of those will appeal -- but I'm thinking you might like being right in town. I wouldn't count on private parking being part of the deal but it's certainly available in some newer buildings.

If you want the good school district insurance then focus on Brookline where your husband will have a 20-30 minute trolley car (green line) ride to work.

Last edited by missionhill; 09-28-2017 at 11:11 PM..
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Old 09-28-2017, 11:20 PM
 
Location: New England
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I mean if the op can afford 9k a month in rent, he/she can afford to pay 400 bucks for a parking spot every month to avoid having to deal with the green line.
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Old 09-29-2017, 06:32 AM
 
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People seem to be missing the fact that the OP has no problem paying for rent and private schools. Might as well live on Beacon Hill. If the public school backup is critical, then Brookline.

Last edited by Dm84; 09-29-2017 at 06:48 AM..
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Old 09-29-2017, 07:26 AM
 
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Beacon Hill or Back Bay would be ideal.
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Old 09-29-2017, 07:51 AM
 
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Beacon Hill, Back Bay, and South End in order of proximity to DTX are your best options in that budget if you want to stay in the city. I have lived in all 3 with young kids so let me know if you have specific questions.

Lots of great private school options depending on what you want - have a look at Kingsley Montessori, Learning Project, Snowden to give you a general sense.

Most places in that price range in Back Bay and South End will come with a parking spot (usually outdoors) or an option to rent one. There are also a lot of garage rental options in the area. There are less parking options in Beacon Hill but there is a large garage under the Common where many rent.

Brookline would be great option if you want less city but not quite suburbs - subway or drive to DTX in ~30 mins or less. More space, parking, very good public schools, and great private school options.

Coming from Manhattan, at least you wont have sticker shock unlike most of the folks moving here.

Good luck!

Last edited by sawyer2; 09-29-2017 at 08:16 AM..
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Old 09-29-2017, 12:10 PM
 
Location: Chibostoncaliseattle
1,605 posts, read 736,197 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sawyer2 View Post
Beacon Hill, Back Bay, and South End in order of proximity to DTX are your best options in that budget if you want to stay in the city. I have lived in all 3 with young kids so let me know if you have specific questions.

Lots of great private school options depending on what you want - have a look at Kingsley Montessori, Learning Project, Snowden to give you a general sense.

Most places in that price range in Back Bay and South End will come with a parking spot (usually outdoors) or an option to rent one. There are also a lot of garage rental options in the area. There are less parking options in Beacon Hill but there is a large garage under the Common where many rent.

Brookline would be great option if you want less city but not quite suburbs - subway or drive to DTX in ~30 mins or less. More space, parking, very good public schools, and great private school options.

Coming from Manhattan, at least you wont have sticker shock unlike most of the folks moving here.

Good luck!
Absolutely agree. South End would be my first choice with a family as many of the brownstones come with small back patio space, and Tremont street offers some of the most family friendly bars and restaurants in the city. Think browtones neighborhoods in Brooklyn (not Williamsburg).
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