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Old 01-28-2018, 03:49 PM
 
10 posts, read 7,625 times
Reputation: 15

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I'm looking at rooms on craigslist and I wanted to get some advice because I have never lived in Boston before (even though I spend a lot of time there).

I'm trying to find something as affordable as I can as close to the downtown area as I can. I also have a car so I know I probably can't be too close. Right now it appears the following areas could be good for me in order of best to worse:

Cambridge
Somerville
Brookline
Allstown
Dorchester
East Boston

I am looking for feedback on this, for instance I know south boston is a rough place so I avoid it. I'd like to be able to live in a lively place with a lot of options in the immediate area but still within an easy transit or even a long walk from the core of the city (I will walk into town from 4 miles out like it's nothing and enjoy it)

I also am interested in tips for craigslist and things to watch out for. Are there rooms posted all the time or is it only towards the end of the month? Should I jump on everything fast or do I have the luxury of being picky?
Just hoping to get a better idea of the market and the Do's and donts. Thank you!

Last edited by -Adventure-; 01-28-2018 at 04:15 PM..
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Old 01-28-2018, 04:13 PM
 
112 posts, read 60,459 times
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A rental number and desired unit features would be useful. The words Cambridge and affordable don't go together.
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Old 01-28-2018, 04:20 PM
 
10 posts, read 7,625 times
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Im just looking for a single private room, not an apartment or a house. I just need some free parking (even if its street parking) and WiFi to have my basic needs met.

I've definitely seen some rooms in Cambridge for well under a grand.
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Old 01-28-2018, 05:00 PM
 
Location: Quincy, Mass. (near Boston)
2,050 posts, read 3,462,411 times
Reputation: 1618
Do you mean a rooming house situation where you keep to yourself other than the fellow tenants and you sharing a bathroom? Just a microwave and small fridge in your room is all you need? No air conditioning is okay?

You don't want to have conventional roommates at all? Where you'd share a kitchen, bath and living room, and possibly interact with them somewhat regularly?

Will you have employment? It's hard to rent even a room without proof of income.
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Old 01-28-2018, 05:56 PM
 
10 posts, read 7,625 times
Reputation: 15
Shared bathrooms/common areas are fine, finding compatible or friendly roommates is always a plus. I don't have anything against it if it happens but location at a reasonable price is important. For instance Brookline is close to fenway and other places I really like to hang out in, so is cambridge. A big reason I want to move closer to the city is to enjoy it on foot as much as I can. Even though I will bring my car I don't want to have to be using it to get everywhere in the city especially since I like to walk.

I'm presentable, have a good job that I've held a long time and am professional. I would think that i am probably ahead of the average person looking for a room in that area. At the same time I'm not pretentious and can fit in with everyone except people looking for trouble or thieves. I don't want to live in a bad neighborhood.

For me it's just that I am trying to find the best possible option in as short amount of time as possible while avoiding any needless mistakes - which is the reason I post. Any advice or help people have to give will be extremely appreciated.

Last edited by -Adventure-; 01-28-2018 at 06:06 PM..
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Old 01-28-2018, 07:00 PM
 
586 posts, read 289,673 times
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South Boston is NOT a rough place and would work well for you.

There is no overnight street parking in Brookline, so make sure you can rent a spot nearby to anything you find there.
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Old 01-28-2018, 07:00 PM
 
624 posts, read 444,365 times
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While I have never looked for a roommate situation on Craigslist I have found every Boston apartment I have rented that way. So no big secrets other than using commonsense as you normally would. I would want to meet them and tour the place at the same time. Watch out for partners who aren't really roommates but are there all the time, ask about how they deal with food and common areas and parking permits. Some places only have a certain number of parking permits(like they have a garage or something) and they may all be dibbsed.

I would stick to Cambridge/Somerville/JP/Brookline/SouthEnd. Alston is very young drunken college-y, East Boston is boring (but by the ocean) and Dorchester is spread out and unfocused. I would even go so far as to say focus on subway stops rather than cities/neighborhoods.

So on the north half of the red line I'd live by Central, Harvard, Porter, Davis but not Kendall or Alewife. I'd live anywhere on the green line except Lechemere, as far out as Coolidge/Harvard Ave/Brookline V/MFA. On the Orange line I'd live between Sullivan and Green St. There is nowhere on the Blue Line that is too fun. The south half of the red line I wouldn't live south of Andrew but you may find a place in Dorchester that you can walk to JFK from.
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Old 01-28-2018, 07:13 PM
 
10 posts, read 7,625 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by porterhouse View Post

There is no overnight street parking in Brookline, so make sure you can rent a spot nearby to anything you find there.
Ouch. Yeah see this is why I could use some tips.
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Old 01-28-2018, 07:19 PM
 
10 posts, read 7,625 times
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Thank you!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SalamanderSmile View Post
While I have never looked for a roommate situation on Craigslist I have found every Boston apartment I have rented that way. So no big secrets other than using commonsense as you normally would. I would want to meet them and tour the place at the same time. Watch out for partners who aren't really roommates but are there all the time, ask about how they deal with food and common areas and parking permits. Some places only have a certain number of parking permits(like they have a garage or something) and they may all be dibbsed.

I would stick to Cambridge/Somerville/JP/Brookline/SouthEnd. Alston is very young drunken college-y, East Boston is boring (but by the ocean) and Dorchester is spread out and unfocused. I would even go so far as to say focus on subway stops rather than cities/neighborhoods.

So on the north half of the red line I'd live by Central, Harvard, Porter, Davis but not Kendall or Alewife. I'd live anywhere on the green line except Lechemere, as far out as Coolidge/Harvard Ave/Brookline V/MFA. On the Orange line I'd live between Sullivan and Green St. There is nowhere on the Blue Line that is too fun. The south half of the red line I wouldn't live south of Andrew but you may find a place in Dorchester that you can walk to JFK from.
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Old 01-28-2018, 07:26 PM
 
Location: New England
1,925 posts, read 1,068,785 times
Reputation: 1682
Biggest thing you have to watch out on Craigslist for is if the property price is too good to be true. Don't wire any money before you see the place and meet the landlord/roommates.

As far as Southie goes it hasn't been rough since the 80s, and is pretty gentrified. I'd still look at it. Probably the only crime you'd fall victim too would be some vehicle molestation if you decide to steal a space saver. Parking in Southie can be an issue at times, although yymv.

I'd describe Southie as being full of 20 and 30 something former frat bros and sorority who now work at decent paying jobs downtown and in the Seaport. Not rough out all, unless you venture into the projects (and the Southie ones aren't the worst)

Cambridge is expensive, but is a great place to live.

Somerville would be a good option too, it's right next to Cambridge and is traditionally the more working class town. It used to be like Southie, with the Winter Hill Gang, but those days are long gone. Personally i'm a big fan of the Davis Square area. It's the most expensive part of Somerville but is probably one of my favorite neighborhoods in the Boston area.

Brookline make sure you have a off street parking spot. You can't park overnight on the street in Brookline. The part around Coolidge Corner could work well for you. Although like Cambridge Brookline is very expensive.

East Boston is a little bit separated from the rest of the city. I'd look near the water on Jeffries Point. There are lots of good food options in Eastie, although I wouldn't call it lively. Still you're only one stop from downtown on the least overcrowded T line, so that's a plus. East Boston has a huge international population, mostly of Hispanic origin.

Allston is a very young area, lots of college students, but lots of young professionals too. Allston center is pretty lively.

Dorchester is huge. Parts of it are really rough (by Boston standards). Parts of it are pretty nice. Probably the only area that i'd recommend for you would be Savin Hill. I'd try to stay east of Dot Ave.
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