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Space starved in Greater Boston?

Posted by Scott Van Voorhis June 19, 2013 06:48 AM

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If you want to live inside 128, you are likely to have to settle for less space. The question is whether you can do it and not feel space starved, especially if you have moved from another part of the country with more spacious - and far less expensive - homes.

I'm fine with my 1,800-square-foot village colonial in Natick, but in many other parts of the country I would be slumming it. (The real estate sites, Zillow, Trulia and so forth, say I have 2,100 square feet and three bathrooms - that's news to me!)

But unless you are ready to spend $900,000 if not a million or more, you can forget about that spanking new 4,000 square foot home on a one acre lot, at least if you want to get inside 128.

And we are not just talking about super upscale towns in the western suburbs.

Just check out this 4,000-square-foot Waltham house that was on the market for nearly $900,000 this spring. (And it dwarfs the lot, which is less than a third of an acre, with the front door seemingly ten feet from the road.)

Then consider you could get the same house in the Dallas area for a third of the price.

Is the tradeoff worth it in order to live in the Boston area, with all its supposed advantages, some real, some imagined? And at what point do companies and professionals say enough is enough and start steering clear?

Here are some interesting thoughts on the issue put forth by DrDoofenschmirtz on the comments section of this blog.

I agree with condo premise and that lot more people will have to "settle" in terms of living space if staying closer to Boston/Cambridge. However, I do wonder if that fact will indeed become deterrent, and disincentive for companies to settle here or move their people into MA. So many people who came in the last 5 years are still looking at their homes and COL, and wondering if it was worth it.

On the paper MA looks almost ideal, but living here brings completely different perspective and lot more stress. It is truly overcrowded and overpriced, infrastructure is very old and inadequate, transportation is passable, not great as it could be, etc...

We are having great housing gains in prices, and people can feel wealthy, but that wealth doesn't translate in better conditions of living at all. I do not feel any wish to upgrade, improve, get into rebuilding of our towns and state of MA at all. There is very hands-off attitude concerning investments and improvement. We have Harvard and MIT! Why bother, I guess?

Are we in the arrested development phase and when will that possibly tip the scale against MA?

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

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