Finders, fixers.

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Looking for a cooler place to live (literally)

I love our city of Quincy — I think it’s one of the best places to live around Boston, in fact — but when you scour real estate listings for a living, you’re bound to get some wanderlust once in awhile. And that gets especially acute during a heat wave. Here by the ocean, our…

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home in reading, mass. - the best places to live around Boston, Massachusetts

The best places to live in and around Boston

Last week, the Boston Globe Magazine published its annual “Top Spots to Live in Greater Boston” feature, which I’ve been fortunate enough to write for the past two years. For want of a better metric, the list is based on the spots with the biggest increases in median home prices over the previous five years — the…

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Eight Boston-area commutes, ranked

In the past 20 years, I’ve lived and worked all over Boston. Until we bought our house, I rarely stayed at an apartment longer than a year or two, and the nature of the media and publishing industries meant I didn’t stay at any one job too long either. And in that time, I’ve had…

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norwell antique home for sale

5 affordable homes for sale in good school districts

Home buyers often fall back on the notion of “good schools.” It’s understandable – you want to give your kids the best opportunities you can, and homes in good school districts do tend to hold or increase their value better than those in other neighborhoods. However, I think this concept is waaaaay overblown, at least in…

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It’s official: You’d be crazy to buy in Boston right now

Last fall, I wondered whether you’d have to be nuts to buy a house in the Boston area, given how overheated the market was. In the ensuing months, it’s only gotten hotter – and the terrain more treacherous for first-time home buyers. In Sunday’s Globe, realtor Marjorie Youngren shares what it takes to make an attractive…

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dutch colonial on derby street in melrose house for sale

Could you live with a train running through your backyard?

There’s a house for sale right now in Melrose — a pretty charming, family-friendly inner suburb of Boston with very good schools, restaurants, and parks — that would appear to be a steal. Redfin pegs 114 Derby Rd. as a “hot home,” meaning it’s very likely to sell in the next 10 days. And that’s largely…

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Reader mail: Overwhelmed by house hunting in Boston

I recently received a reader email in response to one of my Globe articles, and I thought I’d write a post about it since other people out there might be thinking the same thing: Enjoyed your article about zombie homes. I’m actually relatively new to Boston, living in an apartment with my wife and two-year-old son. We have…

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salem witch house in salem mass

Wish Listing: Salem

No, the Salem Witch House is not for sale. But when it comes to celebrating Halloween, Salem, Mass., reigns supreme. The Witch City embraces its occult history — you know, with the witch trials and all that — and amps up the spooky-meter to a whole new level each October with a month of Haunted Happenings. Crowds…

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Real Estate Road Trip: Nova Scotia

We went to Nova Scotia for a week this past June — partly to visit my family in Cape Breton (my uncle Chris is an artist up there, my cousin Shannon owns the wonderful Groovy Goat Farm & Soap Co., and my other cousin Mike is a musician) — but also to get a taste of Celtic countryside just…

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northampton entryway

Wish Listing: Northampton

My wife and I love Quincy, but it’s not like we grew up here or have any deep, philosophical connection to the town. We just felt like it offered the best bang for our buck when we were ready to buy a house: It’s got the ocean, pretty good schools, walkable neighborhoods with shops and restaurants,…

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rockport harbor

Wish Listing: Rockport

Earlier this month, we met some friends up in Rockport for the town’s annual Christmas celebration and tree lighting ceremony. Each year, Santa Claus arrives by lobster boat and leads a parade through town riding on an antique fire truck. Later we watched Kris Kringle light the big tree in Dock Square as a choir sang Christmas…

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Wish Listing: Quincy

I know you’re not supposed to covet they neighbor’s stuff and whatnot, but compared to our monstrous two-family, the cute dutch colonial next door has always seemed downright adorable. And now it’s for sale! Won’t you be my neighbor? Sure, it’s not a million-dollar Milton mansion or anything. But Redfin pegs our neighbor’s place as a…

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