How Much Does A Home Cost In Boston?
Boston real estate prices have been on the rise over the past decade due to a steadily increasing Metro area population and a shortage of single family homes for sale in Boston. The pandemic did little to slow down the roaring housing market, as single-family home prices increased by 12% in 2020 compared to 2019. Now in 2021, the median sales price for a home in Boston is $760,000.
So if your looking to purchase a home in Boston, don’t throw in the towel just yet. There are still areas where you can find affordable real estate prices, and depending on what your looking for in a home, you may not be priced out after all.
Cost of a Boston Condo Vs. Single Family Home
If you’re looking to buy a home in Boston, you will undoubtedly have many more options for condos than for single-family homes. Boston is one of the oldest cities in America, and there just isn’t enough room to build more single family homes within Boston’s city limits. As a result, the total supply of single family homes for sale in Boston has stayed relatively the same for many years despite the area’s growing population.
What little land there is to develop in Boston has been reserved for larger condominium projects that can house many units on a small parcel. Former Mayor Marty Walsh and now US Secretary of Labor launched the Housing a Changing City plan back in 2014, which aimed to add 69,000 new units of housing across the city by 2030. Since then, new development projects have been breaking ground seemingly every month, and the majority of these projects are large high-rise condos or multi-unit buildings.
According to MLS data, in the past 12 months, there have been 5,733 real estate sales for Boston condos compared to just 1,100 for single-family homes. At this moment, there are 1,035 active Boston condo listings in MLS compared to just 129 active single-family listings. So, if you’re looking for a wider selection and lower prices, you’ll have more to pick from if you’re open to condos.
That being said, the current median sales price for a condo in Boston is $685,000, which is $75,000 less than the median sales price for a single family home in Boston ($760,000).
Most Expensive Neighborhoods to Buy a Single Family Home in Boston
If a condo is not your style, and a backyard and a driveway is what you crave, then you’ll be looking at less options depending on the area you’re looking for. Real estate prices can vary greatly depending on the neighborhood you look, with single family median prices ranging from $6.2M in Back Bay to $546K in Mattapan. So let’s start with the list of most expensive neighborhoods.
Back Bay and Beacon Hill standout as the most expensive neighborhoods to buy a house in Boston by far, with single family median prices of $6.26M and $4.88M respectively. South End, Bay Village, and Fenway round out the top 5, all with median home prices above $1.7M.
|Neighborhood||Single Family Home Median Sales Price|
These are some of Boston’s most sought after neighborhoods for many reasons. They are all centrally located near Boston’s economic downtown engine, and all have close access to some of the best entertainment and cultural fares Boston has to offer. Not to mention, all of these neighborhoods are renowned for their beautiful historic architecture. Think beautiful 19th century brick brownstones, stunning Victorian architecture, and cobble stone streets (see: Beacon Hill).
These types of homes are a staple of Boston and in very limited supply, so there are usually very few listings of homes for sale in these areas. With numerous combined factors, median sales prices for single family homes are much higher in these neighborhoods when compared to all others.
Most Affordable Neighborhoods to Buy a Single Family Home in Boston
If you’re searching for a Boston home on a budget, don’t give up hope! There are still some neighborhoods in Boston where you can find Boston homes for sale under $700K. Many of these areas are up-and-coming neighborhoods with high potential return on investment if you know how to add value and make some savvy decisions.
|Neighborhood||Single Family Home Median Sales Price|
Mattapan and Hyde Park both have median sales prices below $600K for single-family homes. Roxbury and East Boston’s median sale price sits below $650K, and Dorchester’s median sales price is still below $700K, with plenty of options in the $500K range.
What Is The Price Per Square Foot For Boston Homes?
The average home in Boston costs $710 per square foot for all property types (single-family, multi-family, and condos). Like the median sales price, the average price per square foot can vary significantly depending on the neighborhood you look. Prices can range from $1,594 per square foot in Seaport down to $359 per square foot in Hyde Park. These two neighborhoods are the most expensive and most affordable respectively in terms of price per square foot in Boston.
Below is a comprehensive list of all neighborhoods in Boston and there respective price per square feet.
|Neighborhood||Average Sales Price Per Square Foot|
There is no debating the fact that prices for Boston homes are among the most expensive in the nation. Regardless, any home buyer equipped with sound local knowledge and data can still be competitive in Boston’s fast-paced housing market.
Start by compiling a list of attributes that are important for your home search, whether it be school districts, commute, or local points of interest. Determine your budget by using a mortgage calculator, then start your search for Boston homes with these parameters in mind. You can also lean on one of the many experienced local sales agents found here on Boston Pads to help you find your ideal Boston home.