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Old 09-03-2009, 02:58 PM
 
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Hi! I'm a 26yr old female who is planning to move to Boston fall 2010 to attend graduate school at Boston College. I'm looking to find work there as well. After looking at some of the salaries posted, I wondered how they would equate to the cost of living. For a single person living in the Boston College area who likes a well-rounded life, how much should I be looking and asking for? Thanks
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Old 09-03-2009, 07:14 PM
 
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Howdy - I think we need to know more about what that really means in terms of spending. You want two 1-weeks vacations abroad, a car, going out to dinner & drinks 3x per week, pay back grad school, living by yourself, living in the best/coolest part of town, down payment to own your own condo, etc. etc.? You might be happy making $35k...or unhappy making $65k. The location of where you live, if you have roommates, and what kind of debt you have are the big considerations. Also, what's your field or line of work going to be?
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Old 09-03-2009, 07:21 PM
 
Location: Boston, MA
3,436 posts, read 4,777,393 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScituateAl View Post
You might be happy making $35k...or unhappy making $65k.
Don't you mean happy making $65k or unhappy making $35k?

$65,000 is definitely enough for a comfortable living for someone single in this area. Raising a family is of course more stretchy but still doable. For $35,000 you will most likely need a roommate or someone else helping out with bills.
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Old 09-03-2009, 11:43 PM
 
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Boston College isn't in Boston, it's in Newton, and is very much a streetcar suburb, beautiful town, not cheap. Just in case you didn't know.
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Old 09-04-2009, 06:08 AM
 
Location: Quincy, Mass. (near Boston)
2,646 posts, read 4,578,879 times
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Check Craigslist for 1 br apts. In Oak Square in Brighton; Brighton Center; or Cleveland Circle areas. Newton Corner or even Watertown is an option, both safe. Allston is not as nice and grittier, closer to BU but still an option. Good eateries and clubs in and around Allston Village. Brookline is expensive and close to Brighton and BC.

Expect to pay $1,100-$1,200 min. for any ordinary 1 br, even more in Brookline.

Studios in student areas likely begin at $850-$950 for ordinary units.
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Old 09-04-2009, 06:58 AM
 
Location: Brookline, MA
613 posts, read 2,202,738 times
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That's not an easy question to answer. It really involves your debt level, what kind of lifestyle you want and where you're coming from. Housing is the single biggest expense; that's why roommate situations are so common. Even if people can afford to live alone, having roommates can easily free up several hundred dollars a month to either save or put toward fun. Once you figure out what you're willing and able to spend on housing, it's a little easier to figure out the rest of your budget.
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Old 09-04-2009, 09:20 AM
 
7,228 posts, read 6,560,117 times
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A "well-rounded life" is a meaningless phrase (or at least, a highly subjective one) in this context. You should first figure out housing: the maximum you can pay for rent, whether you want to live alone or with a roommate(s), what amenities you want in an apartment, if you want to be right near school or in a different neighborhood, if you will have a car or be relying solely on the T, etc. Then you need to look into the Boston housing stock and see if your expectations match up to reality (depending on where you are coming from, you might be in for some sticker shock).

I don't know what field of work you are in, but it might make more sense to make a budget based on average salaries in that field, not the other way around.
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Old 09-04-2009, 01:24 PM
 
Location: Metrowest, MA
1,810 posts, read 10,177,347 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brightdoglover View Post
Boston College isn't in Boston, it's in Newton, and is very much a streetcar suburb, beautiful town, not cheap. Just in case you didn't know.
There is a misconception that Boston College is "Newton" only. If you look at the map, most of Boston college is actually in Boston (Brighton).

Chestnut Hill is actually parts of three separate municipalities Brookline, Newton and Boston (Brighton and West Roxbury).


As to the cost of living compare to salary, it is not good. But, it comes down to what is your expectation. Many resident are spending over 40% of their salaries for housing.
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Old 09-04-2009, 03:52 PM
 
Location: Newton, Mass.
2,954 posts, read 11,832,645 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Urban Peasant View Post
Don't you mean happy making $65k or unhappy making $35k?
I thought it was supposed to mean unhappy making $65K or happy making $35k, as in some people like a more lavish lifestyle and wouldn't be happy living on "only" $65K, while others have fewer material needs and would be content with what $35K got them.
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Old 09-06-2009, 10:03 AM
 
Location: Boston, MA
3,436 posts, read 4,777,393 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by holden125 View Post
I thought it was supposed to mean unhappy making $65K or happy making $35k, as in some people like a more lavish lifestyle and wouldn't be happy living on "only" $65K, while others have fewer material needs and would be content with what $35K got them.
You might be right. I wasn't thinking in those terms at all.
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