Living in Boston comes with many perks, from access to a thriving economic scene and well-paying jobs in a variety of sectors to exceptional schools for all educational levels (literally from kindergarten to post-doc) and numerous cultural opportunities and experiences. Boston is also a great place for sports fans, as it’s home to legendary teams like the Celtics, Red Sox and Bruins. On top of that, Boston has a diverse and delicious food scene – so, what’s the downside, you ask?

Well, one major downside when it comes to Boston are housing costs – the average home value in Boston hovers around $746K. Homes in Boston also tend to be on the smaller side. One easy solution to compensate for the lack of space at home is renting a self storage unit in Boston. They are generally cheap compared to residential space, and with the recent uptick in new self storage construction, you can find a facility around every corner.

If you don’t mind leaving the city limits, options for more space are more varied. Budget-minded buyers will find more relaxed housing markets in the suburbs, with lower prices, great amenities and a bit more space, all within an easy commute to Boston.

Sold on the suburban lifestyle? Here are the top 5 choices if you want to relocate to a Boston suburb:

Portsmouth, NH

  • Home value of $659K

With a population of almost 22K people, the coastal town of Portsmouth features numerous beautiful, brick-clad homes. The historic downtown bustles with energy, with plenty of restaurants, cool cafes, and shops. Plus, you have some great beaches in the area, which means your summers will be lots of fun.

The town has a long history – it was established in the 17th century – so you can enjoy attractions such as the Strawbery Banke Museum, a living history museum that shows you how locals of Portsmouth used to live, from the foundation of the town until the 1950s.

Boston is located an hour’s drive away. You can visit the city as often as you want without too much effort, and you can also commute to work (particularly nowadays, as many people are under a mixed, work from home plus work from office schedule). Schools in the area are excellent, making Portsmouth a great choice to relocate as a family. And should you need self storage while relocating, you can easily rent a self storage unit in Portsmouth, NH.

Norwood, MA

  • Home value of $660K

Norwood is a short, 30-minutes’ drive from downtown Boston, and this town of 30K residents has friendly, peaceful neighborhoods and a strong sense of community. It’s an excellent choice for families and young professionals who want to stay close to the city, while also enjoying a more laid-back lifestyle. You’ll have plenty of access to nature – the town has numerous parks, and there are other outdoor attractions in the area, such as the Blue Hills Reservation, or Warner Trail, while several beaches are relatively close by.

The downtown area is teeming with entertainment options, such as restaurants, cafes, and antique shops – plus, you’ll find cool art galleries, a beautiful theater, and several old churches and other historic buildings. In terms of housing options, you have your choice between older buildings or new homes and apartments. Renting a self storage unit in Norwood will make your transition easier.

Gloucester, MA

  • Home value of $660K

Gloucester is a vibrant town with around 30K residents, located 36 miles north of downtown Boston – which amounts to a commute of about 50 minutes, allowing you to keep working, studying, and having fun in Boston. However, Gloucester also has an active job market, so you don’t necessarily have to commute. The coastal town is a popular summer destination and has a strong fishing tradition, with the nearby Good Harbor Beach being considered one of the top beaches in the country.

Gloucester has a very active artistic life, hosting Rocky Neck Art Colony, the country’s oldest, continually working art colony, and numerous galleries and studios specializing in different types of art, such as ceramics, woodworking, painting and sculpture. The historic downtown area is charming and cool, providing shopping, entertainment, and eating out opportunities. It is particularly busy and fun during the summer season. All things considered, Gloucester is a great relocation destination for young professionals, creative people, and young families with children.

In terms of housing, you’ll be able to find both old fixer uppers in need of some TLC, new builds, or even spectacular waterfront properties, depending on how much you’re willing and able to spend. The self storage facilities in Gloucester are available for you to rent a self storage unit to help during the move, or even long-term.

Dedham, MA

  • Home value of $663K

Dedham is located just  17 miles or a 30 minutes’ drive away from Boston’s downtown, and the train will get you there as efficiently, in around 35 minutes. This makes the town, which has about 25K residents, a very good location for people who plan on commuting daily to the city proper.

Like many other towns in Massachusetts, Dedham has a long history behind it and a charming, walkable downtown area with many old buildings that now host shops, restaurants, and cafes. The town also has the country’s oldest surviving timber frame house, built around the 1640s, the Fairbanks House, which is now a museum. Although located close to downtown Boston, Dedham offers access to outdoor activities, with numerous parks located here, plus the nearby Wilson Mountain Reservation. Education is also excellent in Dedham, with the public schools being rated above the national average.

Housing options include mostly single-family homes and townhouses, new or old, and home sizes vary from smaller 2 or 3-bedroom homes to large mansions. You can rent self storage units in Dedham in case you need some extra storage space while moving or after you’ve gotten settled.

Danvers, MA

  • Home value: $666K

Danvers is located a short, 45 minutes train or car ride away from Boston city proper, and it’s also fairly close to great beaches such as Gloucester and Revere. Formerly known as Salem Village, Danvers is associated with the famous Salem witch trials of the late 1600s – so there’s a lot of history to explore here.

The town has a little under 30K residents, and it’s pretty famous for its shopping and dining out options located along the Route 114 corridor. The town has a long history of farming, hence the “Oniontown” nickname, and you can still enjoy plenty of open fields, woods, and river access around it. The local Endicott Park features 165 acres of recreational land where you can go fish, hike, sled in the winter, and more. Families with children will appreciate the well performing education sector.

Housing options include townhouses that are located mostly in and near the downtown area and larger single-family homes with bigger yards in other neighborhoods. Some apartments are also available for sale. There are also several self storage facilities in Danvers where you can rent storage space while moving or renovating your new Danvers home.

Note: Home values in this article are from the Zillow Home Value Index.


Maria Gatea is a creative writer for StorageCafe and RentCafe with a background in Journalism and Communication. After covering business and finance-related topics as a freelance writer for 15 years, she is now focusing on researching and writing about the real estate industry. You may contact Maria via email.

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