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Urban living versus suburban and rural. What’s your pick?

Posted by Scott Van Voorhis November 3, 2010 06:58 AM

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OK, time to detox from all the breathless election coverage.

Here's a quick recap on the real estate angle stemming from the voting action yesterday.

Barney Frank survived a pretty strong challenge by a Marine reservist Sean Bielat, who put Barney on the hot seat on whether he ignored early warning signs of the housing market fiasco.

And with a big boost from the Massachusetts Association of Realtors and a coalition of business, religious and housing groups, Question 2, which would have repealed the state's 1960s-era affordable housing law, went down to a resounding defeat.

Let me know if I am missing anything.

Here's a news flash: There's more to buying a home than price, even in Greater Boston, arguably one of the most overpriced markets in the country.

It's also a question of what you want to come home to at night - a condo in a funky city neighborhood, a house on an impeccably landscaped suburban street or a home tucked away in the woods off some dirt road in Podunkville?

My recent post on whether it is worth trading off a long commute in order to get a cheaper home sparked a debate in the comments section over the virtues of rural versus urban living.

I will state up front that I am a suburban kind of guy now. I like living in Natick - I can walk to the train station and the center of town, but I also have some nice trees and a field out back to look upon. That's the right balance for me. Then again, I am a Dad in his early forties - living in the city seemed a lot more exciting before I had three little ones to chase after.

But for badjuju, who has fond memories of fishing and canoeing, Natick is probably too urban.

Here's his case for rural living.

"I have lived in Watertown, Brighton/Alston, and Somerville. Have / had friends who lived in Everett and Medford. I work in Everett. It isn't for me, that's all. Don't get me wrong they're not crime ridden slums, but they aren't the nicest places in MA either. I grew up in the sticks, with a yard and some trees/forest in the back. Conservation land with a river we canoed and fished not 100yds from my house. That is what I am looking for. Yes there are some nice spots in some of those towns or cities. But the neighborhoods are tightly packed with little to no yard and no nature whatsoever."

City lovers, even fans of retro suburban living like me, what's your take?

This blog is not written or edited by or the Boston Globe.
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Scott Van Voorhis is a freelance writer who specializes in real estate and business issues.

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