An area in the northeast corner of Needham is called Needham Crossing. It is a light industrial corridor east of the I-95/Route 128 beltway. Needham Crossing is comprised of commercial and retail businesses including a Coca-Cola plant, a Trader Joe's packing plant, and several high technology and Internet firms, such as PTC. Apart from this relatively small area and its thriving town center, Needham is primarily an affluent bedroom community and commuter suburban district which you will find to be very friendly and a great place in which to live and raise a family. Residents often talk about how close-knit the neighborhoods are. Knock on a door or two, chat a resident up that you pass by and you will hear the same sentiments expressed from everyone about their Needham home, "the only way I'm leaving is in a pine box".
The Town of Needham is located on rocky uplands within a loop of the Charles River in the eastern section of Norfolk County, Massachusetts, bordered by Wellesley on the west and northwest, Newton on the north and northeast, the West Roxbury section of Boston on the east, Dedham on the southeast and south, and Westwood and Dover on the south. Needham is just 10 short miles southwest of Boston. Quick access to the rest of the metroplex is possible via I-95/SR-128, SR-9, and SR-135. The commuter train runs through Needham with stations at Needham Junction, Needham Center, and Needham Heights, if you'd rather avoid driving in rush hour traffic - see schedule here. If you are doing a search for properties or for anything or anyone else in Needham, you can search by two zip codes - 02492 (for south and western parts of Needham) and 02494 (for its northeast section, Needham Heights).
Different areas of Needham are given local names. Some of the more common neighborhoods include: Birds Hill, Tower Hill, Mitchell School, Broadmeadow, Walker Pond, Needham Junction, Needham Heights, High Rock Junction, Volante, Needham South of Highland, Thorpe Park Area, Hunnewell-Hillside, Olin Woods, and Charles River Village.
Check out The Neighborhood Farm - aka Farmers' Market - an exciting addition to the town. It provides fresh, locally grown produce from Memorial Day through the Thanksgiving weekend. Volante Farms, open year round, is another popular market. Are you a mountain biker or simply a hiker? Either way, you will enjoy Cutler Park Reservation, a state park, with its hills and trails near an 800-acre marsh along the Charles River and beside route 128. There is an outdoor public swimming pool built into Rosemary Lake, and many parks, playgrounds and ball fields that offer exceptional family recreation, including: DeFazio Park, Greene's Field (which houses a playground and several sports fields), Memorial Park, Perry Park (featuring a playground and basketball court), the Walker-Gordon Field and Walker Pond (where fishing is added to soccer and baseball activities), the Ridge Hill Reservation (for nature hiking at its best), and Town Forest Park and Farley Pond (where you can enjoy mountain biking). If you are single or want more night life you will need to drive into Boston. Don't forget to check into the Newcomer's Club of Needham once you decide to make Needham your home.
In years past, Needham was principally recognized as the country getaway for well-to-do Bostonians living on Beacon Hill or Back Bay. Many large houses first built in the 1800s as country homes for the rich still survive. You will find some secluded estates along the Charles River - areas of grand new homes and charming, old-fashioned neighborhoods. Since the southern area of Needham is comprised of many estates built upon 3-5 acres - some even as large as 35 to 60 acres - it is less densely populated than its northern section where lot sizes are typically a fifth of an acre or less. Understandably, you will find the most expensive homes in the south. However, a lot of people think of all of Needham as an expensive place to buy a home because many homes priced less than $600,000 are snapped up by builders, torn down, and replaced with McMansions selling from $1,300,000 - $1,600,000. You can find condominiums/townhomes in Needham, but by and large Needham consists of single-family dwellings.
Needham's official web site provides links to important information, including an online database which you can access to see what value the city Assessor gives each property. You can jot down the value found here and then multiply it by its annual tax rate to determine the total taxes of any property you have interest in buying.
If you have school-age children, the Needham Public School District is highly rated (per GreatSchools.org) especially its middle and high schools and Eliot Elementary School. You can determine which elementary school your child(ren) will attend by locating your prospective new home's address on the list provided here. NPS's transportation policies, bus routes, etc., are outlined here. There are also several private Catholic schools, including Saint Joseph's Elementary School, Monsignor Haddad Middle School, and Saint Sebastian's high school for boys.
It is always wise to check if there is reported criminal activity in the area in which you plan to live. Fortunately, Needham's crime rate is very low. To keep up with daily goings on, you can check in online with the purveyors of local news: The Needham Times, The Hometown Weekly, The Patch, and The Needham Channel on TV. Of course, there are also the Boston Globe and the Boston Herald.
To view all the current MLS real estate listings in Needham, you will need an ID which is "2373988" and the password "Jim". You can login here (iPhone 6 users login here) anonymously anytime, daily or weekly, as often as you wish. If you should see any properties you would like to view in person, give Jim a call or send a text or email indicating which properties and a couple of time frames and Jim will try to schedule you appropriately - please keep in mind that some owners and/or agents require 24-48 hrs advance notice and additionally keeping within a 30-60 minute window if they also require an accompanied showing.
2016 - 332 sales. Sale price - $1,021,486. Market Time - 42 days
2015 - 336 sales. Sale price - $1,006,320. Market Time - 71 days
2014 - 300 sales. Sale price - $967,217. Market Time - 55 days
2013 - 328 sales. Sale price - $1,317,940 Market Time - 81 days
2012 - 335 sales. Sale Price - $807,459. Market Time - 101 days
2011 - 281 sales. Sale Price - $818,141. Market Time - 100 days
2010 - 306 sales. Sale Price - $805,643. Market Time - 90 days
2016 - 49 sales. Sale price - $616,381. Market Time - 43 days
2015 - 72 sales. Sale price - $646,971 Market Time - 53 days
2014 - 68 sales. Sale price - $574,110 Market Time - 42 days
2013 - 24 sales. Sale price - $666,569 Market Time - 42 days
2012 - 53 sales. Sale Price - $459,033 Market Time - 114 days
2011 - 39 sales. Sale Price - $490,260 Market Time - 91 days
2010 - 40 sales. Sale Price - $482,635 Market Time - 131 days
2016 - 4 sales. Sale price - $778,500. Market Time - 42 days
2015 - 3 sales. Sale price - $755,000 Market Time - 60 days
2014 - 2 sales. Sale price - $401,250 Market Time - 6 days
2013 - 3 sales. Sale price - $988,000 Market Time - 29 days
2012 - 7 sales. Sale Price - $600,500 Market Time - 35 days
2011 - 7 sales. Sale Price - $561,357 Market Time - 35 days
2010 - 2 sales. Sale Price - $545,000 Market Time - 33 days