From the Boston Globe
COMMUNITY SNAPSHOT
Hamilton

November 28, 2004

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Hamilton Town Hall, on Bay Road. The town was named after founding father Alexander Hamilton.


34 School St., a two-bedroom, one-bath, 775-square-foot home, listed at $319,000. (Globe photos)

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Miles from Boston: 24
Population: 8,645
Median house price: $480,625
Tax rate: $12.48
Transportation: Routes 1A and 22; MBTA commuter-rail service
Best things: Open spaces, commuter-rail option, proximity to Northern New England
Worst things: Housing costs
MCAS: Member, Hamilton-Wenham Regional School District, which was ranked 33d out of 373 school districts, according to a Boston Globe analysis of 2004 MCAS results. Weston and Belmont had the same ranking.
Census facts: Median family income is $79,886, compared to national rate of $50,046, and 53 percent hold a bachelor's degree or higher, compared to national rate of 24 percent.
Website: www.town.hamilton.ma.us
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HAMILTON -- Deb Vivian is a skier who thinks living in this town gives her an edge: She can get north faster than anyone living in Boston.

"I love this place because it is relatively close to the water and being able to go skiing," said Vivian, referring to ski areas in Vermont and New Hampshire, an hour or so closer because she lives on the North Shore. "It's just so accessible."

Named after one of the country's founding fathers, Alexander Hamilton, the town is best known outside of its borders as a center for horses and the people who own them. Bradley Palmer State Park lies within the community's borders, as do portions of Chebacco Lake and the Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary.

But for Vivian, Hamilton is also a place where the town hosts Friday night movies for youngsters, has many youth sports programs, and has a high-performing school system.

"There are so many families and kids and things to do close by," she said.

Vivian, who is a broker for Coldwell Banker Residential Brokers in Beverly and who is currently listing one of Hamilton's most expensive properties -- a $2.75 million estate -- said the run-up in housing values has cooled here just as it has in other Massachusetts communities.

And many sellers find themselves waiting longer to find a buyer, she said. "Buyers are definitely being more particular."

On Realtor.com recently, 26 single-family homes were listed, ranging from $319,000 for a two-bedroom, one-bath, 775-square-foot house to $2.75 million for the estate, an eight-bedroom, 5-bath, 6,292-square-foot home. The median price for a single-family home during the first nine months of 2004 was $480,625, according to the Warren Group, which publishes real estate information.

JOHN ELLEMENT




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