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Old 01-12-2012, 06:11 PM
 
Location: Milwaukee, WI
55 posts, read 162,705 times
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Hi, my partner and I are considering moving to Boston from Milwaukee. We've heard that it's rather expensive. Are there any neighborhoods to be suggested with a somewhat hip, diverse population that offers affordable rents? Currently, we are renting a nice one bedroom with hardwood floors in a vintage building for $725.
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:25 PM
 
Location: New Hampshire
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I'm afraid you're in for quite the sticker shock! I would start by looking at Allston and Jamaica Plain. Allston has a large student population whereas JP is more family-oriented, but both are among the most diverse and hip neighborhoods in the city.

Last edited by Verseau; 01-12-2012 at 06:38 PM..
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:44 PM
 
Location: New Hampshire
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Mission Hill, adjacent to JP, is also a decent option; it's diverse and has a sizable student population. However, it seems that the "hipness" is drawn more from the surrounding neighborhoods than from within Mission Hill itself. At the very least, it's a good location. Similarly, Brighton (adjacent to Allston) is worth looking into, although it's not quite as hip as its eastern neighbor.

If all of those neighborhoods are too expensive for you, you'll have to compromise significantly on the "hipness" factor. For diversity, you might look into East Somerville or East Boston. Farther from the city, Malden, Waltham...
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Old 01-12-2012, 06:50 PM
 
Location: Milwaukee, WI
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Oh, for sure, we'd care much more about being able to afford to live in the city rather than how "hip" the neighborhood is. Could you perhaps give a ballpark figure of the some of the rents in those areas? Thank you.
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Old 01-13-2012, 06:31 AM
 
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I'd suggest taking a look on craigslist, but a quick glance on my part would put something in either place in the $1300-1500 range, which may or may not include utilities. Being from Milwaukee, you are likely familiar with how a cold winter can make a difference in your "true" rent if you have to pay for heat on top of rent. You may find a deal and get a bit lower than $1300, but that is usually par for the course. This of course is truly general, as things like pets, parking spaces, and other amenities can easily drive the cost of even a 1 BR up quickly.

On CL, you'll also get a kind of general feel for the size of 1BR apartments in Boston. I don't know much about Milwaukee, but especially in Allston, you may find that what is listed as a 1BR is pretty small (i.e. a galley kitchen, small bedroom & living room, and tight bathroom).

Finally, start your search early and be tenacious - Boston is a city like no other when it comes to renting an apartment. If you find something you like jump on it or it may be gone a few hours later!
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Old 01-13-2012, 06:54 AM
 
Location: New Hampshire
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AbrasaxEos' range sounds accurate for a "decent" place. You can find cheaper; rents seem to start around $1100 in Allston-Brighton and Mission Hill. JP looks to be more expensive on average, whereas rents in the cheaper city neighborhoods (East Boston, Dorchester), start around $900. But again, places in these price ranges are not going to be that great. Expect to pay a couple hundred dollars more.
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Old 01-13-2012, 07:04 AM
 
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I'm moving from Nashville to Boston with my partner and just rented a place last week in Jamaica Plain. Honestly I didn't find anything under 1800 in the city that didn't look like a complete dump or wasn't in a bad neighborhood. There were some places in the inner suburbs that were around 1300-1600 that didn't look too bad and I saw some places in the outer suburbs for around 1000 that looked pretty nice but for me, being in the city was important. I ended up paying 2100 for a small (by Nashville standards) 2 bedroom. I don't know about Milwaukee but in Nashville things like water, heat, and electricity are never covered in the rent but in Boston it seems pretty common and that makes the higher rents more palatable.
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Old 01-13-2012, 08:21 AM
 
Location: Johns Island
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The Piano Factory and Douglass Park Apartments, in the South End (pretty hip) both start at about $1800 for 1-bd.
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Old 01-13-2012, 02:03 PM
 
Location: Boston, MA
3,973 posts, read 5,768,214 times
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For $725, the OP can find comfortable living arrangements sharing an apartment with roommates, even in really hip and outgoing places like Cambridge, West Somerville, etc. Many college and graduate students do this but the age of such renters can vary very widely so there is nothing to be afraid of.
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Old 01-13-2012, 02:15 PM
 
Location: Quincy, MA
385 posts, read 1,454,682 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Urban Peasant View Post
For $725, the OP can find comfortable living arrangements sharing an apartment with roommates, even in really hip and outgoing places like Cambridge, West Somerville, etc. Many college and graduate students do this but the age of such renters can vary very widely so there is nothing to be afraid of.
That's definitely a doable price for an apartment share, but as the OP has a partner, it's probably not realistic for two people (unless they were sharing one room in an apartment with others).

For a one bedroom apartment, Cambridge and Somerville would work for the city-like atmosphere, but not budgetwise. There are lots of more affordable areas, but they tend to be in inner suburbs, and it sounds like the OP wants to be in the city.
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