Newton is an affluent suburban city, boasting well-maintained parks, bicycle and fitness trails, golf courses, a public pool, and even a lake. Being well-served by mass transit and major traffic arteries, Newton's proximity to Boston along with its great public schools and safe, quiet neighborhoods, make it a very desirable home for those who commute to Boston or work in Newton's businesses and industries. Newton is the 11th largest community in Massachusetts. The presence of pre-World War II architecture makes it one of the older and more historic cities in the country and among the most expensive in Massachusetts. Decidedly a white-collar city, Newton's homeowners consist mainly of professionals, managers, and sales and office workers. Communities populated with such college-educated citizenry naturally host an enviable combination of good schools, low crime, and a high rate of home ownership in predominantly single-family properties - exactly what you want in an area to raise your children. Newton is a large city by land area but locals think of it as "the town of Newton" because it feels like a village. Real estate here boasts so many flowers and so much green space that Newton has been dubbed the "Garden City."
Newton is approximately 7 miles from downtown Boston, in Middlesex County. The city is bordered by Waltham and Watertown on the north, Needham and the West Roxbury neighborhood of Boston on the south, Wellesley and Weston on the west, and Brookline and the Brighton neighborhood of Boston on the east. From Watertown to Waltham to Needham and Dedham, Newton is bounded by the Charles River. The Yankee Division Highway, or I-95 (but known to the locals as Route 128), follows the Charles from Waltham to Dedham, creating a de facto land barrier. Excellent transportation provided by the MBTA: commuter rail, subway, and bus service, shuttles you quickly to Boston. Route 128/I-95 and the Mass Turnpike provide major throughfares... as well as historic Route 9 that stretches from Copley Square in Boston to Western Mass.
Newton is a patchwork of thirteen villages boasting small "downtown", pedestrian-friendly shopping districts of independent restaurants, distinctive shops, neighborhood services, professional offices, places of worship, cultural organizations, parks, playgrounds, civic buildings (post offices of their own) and, in many cases, transit stations with direct service to downtown Boston; and yet, having no legal definition nor firmly defined borders. Since these villages span from south of Hwy 9 to north of I-90, there are disparities of values in housing throughout Newton; therefore, you cannot simply say that properties are selling for X dollars per sq ft in Newton. The following is excerpted from the official city website:
Auburndale has commercial, office, institutional, and industrial uses located along Commonwealth Avenue, Auburn Street, and Rowe Street, and is near Lasell College. The market area is primarily local, but some businesses attract from a wider area due to its proximity to the Massachusetts Turnpike and Route 128/I-95. Auburndale is home to an MBTA Commuter Rail Station, the Auburndale Historic District, and treasured community resources like the Auburndale Community Library and the Turtle Lane Playhouse.
As a place name, Chestnut Hill includes portions of the City of Newton and Town of Brookline located near Route 9/Boylston Street, Boston College, and the border with the City of Boston. The Chestnut Hill Historic District includes residential portions of the village, while the commercial activities in Chestnut Hill are primarily the regional shopping malls on Route 9.
Newton Centre is at the juncture of Beacon Street and Centre Street and includes the largest commercial district of any of the village centers. The village includes a Green Line MBTA station and several municipal parking lots, including the prominent "triangle lot" in the center.
Newton Corner is a regionally oriented commercial center that includes the Crown Plaza Hotel built on air rights over the Massachusetts Turnpike. This village's location next to Exit 17 on the MassPike offers convenient connections to and from downtown Boston and Logan Airport. MBTA Express Buses make these trips accessible without a car. The Newton Corner Advisory Committee works in this village, which is also home to smaller-scale commercial uses along Washington Street near the border with Watertown.
Newton Highlands is centered at the intersection of Lincoln Street and Walnut Street at an MBTA Green Line station, and the village is readily accessible from Route 9 and Needham Street. There are many small, independently-owned shops, and the Newton Highlands Neighborhood Area Council is an official elected body under the City Charter that works on local issues and plans community events, including the annual Village Day and an ice skating rink.
The Newton Lower Falls commercial area is found along Washington Street near the border with the Town of Wellesley. Located to the west of Route 128/I-95, this village benefits from easy access to the highway and is also close to the Riverside and Woodland MBTA Green Line stations. The village takes its name from its location on the Charles River.
Newton Upper Falls industrial roots are linked to the railroad line that runs along its periphery. The main commercial center, Pettee Square, is at the intersection of Oak Street and Ossipee Road and contains a mix of small retail and larger employers housed in converted mill buildings. There is another smaller commercial area by Eliot Street and Chestnut Street, and parts of this village are in the Newton Upper Falls Historic District. This village is adjacent to the Charles River, also taking its name from a location on the falls, and is walking distance from the Needham Street corridor.
Newtonville's village center is a large commercial area bisected by the Massachusetts Turnpike, with businesses clustered on Washington Street and Walnut Street. The village includes an MBTA Commuter Rail Station and the Newton Senior Center. It is walking distance from the new Newton North High School. The Newtonville Historic District Commission and the Newtonville Advisory Committee are active in this village. The City is currently investigating the redevelopment of the Austin Street municipal parking lot for a mixed-use development that would add housing and vitality to the village center while retaining parking.
>Nonantum is located in the northeastern part of the City and borders Watertown to the east. The primary retail area is located on Watertown Street between Adams Street and Faxon Street, with additional commercial activity along California Street and more manufacturing use in this village than in others. Once known as The Lake, Nonantum is known for its rich Italian-American heritage, celebrated at annual street festivals including the St. Mary of Carmen Festival in July.
Located near the Wells Avenue Office Park, the Oak Hill center itself is a small convenience center primarily serving the Oak Hill Park neighborhood in the southernmost section of the City.
Thompsonville has a concentration of commercial activity near the intersection of Langley Road and Jackson Street, but the village is most closely associated with Chestnut Hill and the regional shopping malls on Route 9/Boylston Street.
Waban has a small commercial center along Beacon Street surrounding the MBTA Green Line station. The transit-oriented village primarily contains locally-owned businesses serving the surrounding neighborhood.
West Newton has an MBTA Commuter Rail Station and its main thoroughfare, Washington Street, provides easy access to the Massachusetts Turnpike.In addition to the retail and service businesses, West Newton has a significant amount of the City's manufacturing use. A local movie theatre and many restaurants lend vibrancy to the center in the evening.
And then there is Four Corners... which is really more of a neighborhood than a village. All this gives rise to the statement, "In some ways, villages in the city of Newton are a state of mind; there are no formal borders, but everyone knows in which village he lives." Perhaps it's because each retains its own distinctive neighborhood feeling and architecture. In any case, even though some village names are official Post Office town designations, this village-based system often causes some confusion with addresses to first time visitors. A prime example is Chestnut Hill. It actually shares its name with a neighboring area in the Town of Brookline and in the city of Boston.
From July through October, you can enjoy the outdoor Farmer's Market or visit Norumbega Park in Auburndale - a beautiful expanse of paths, trails, and stunning scenery. Get together with friends or co-workers at Newton's country clubs and golf courses: Woodland Country Club, Charles River Country Club, and Brae Burn Country Club. Newton also sports 3 public golf courses including Putterham on the Brookline line, the 9-hole Commonwealth course near Boston College and the Leo J. Martin course on the Weston line. If you like classical music, Newton has two symphony orchestras – the New Philharmonia Orchestra of Massachusetts and the Newton Symphony Orchestra, an ensemble of 70 volunteer musicians and featured soloists from around the world. My wife and I head over to Cold Spring Park if we want to take our dogs out for a leash-free run, or for a spin in a kayak or canoe we head over to Nahanton Park or to the Boating House in Auburndale. Crystal Lake offers swimming programs for all residents. Newton is the site of the challenging “heartbreak hill” of the Patriot’s Day Marathon if you enjoy running.
There are ample pre-schools and private schools serving Newton in addition to its public school district. Find here which school is assigned to the home you are contemplating buying, as well as its precinct and other municipal info.
Newton public schools are rated among the top in the state. To serve its large geographic area and student population, there are 3 high schools (Newton South, Newton Central, and Newton North), 4 middle schools (Bigelow, Brown, F.A. Day, and Oak Hill) and 15 elementary schools (Angier, Bowen, Burr, Cabot, Countryside, Franklin, Horace Mann, Lincoln-Eliot, Mason-Rice, Memorial Spalding, Peirce, Underwood, Ward, Williams, and Zervas). Bus schedules, fees, and FAQ's are posted here.
Institues of higher learning located in Newton include Boston College, Lasell College, Mount Ida College and Pine Manor College, specialty schools like William James College, and private schools including: Newton Country Day School, Mount Alvernia High School, Mount Alvernia Academy, Beaver Country Day School, and St Joseph's Preparatory High School.
Access Newton"s official website to learn about its governing body and policies. It is always wise to check if there is reported criminal activity in the area in which you plan to live. To keep up with daily goings on, in general, you can check in online with the Newton Tab, The Patch, Topix, or, of course, the Boston Globe and the Boston Herald.
If you have a specific property already in mind that you think you might like to buy, the City of Newton maintains a database for the City Assessor which you can access to see what value the City gives the property or click here to see what its annual taxes are.
To view all current MLS real estate listings in Newton, you will need an ID which is "2434046" and the password "1234". You can login here anonymously anytime - daily, 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 requiring an accompanied showing.
2016 - 549 sales. List Price - $1,263,387 Sale Price - $1,249,713 Market Time - 34 days
2015 - 601 sales. List Price - $1,293,449 Sale Price - $1,275,339 Market Time - 38 days
2014 - 580 sales. List Price - $1,151,512 Sale Price - $1,142,354 Market Time - 36 days
2013 - 626 sales. List Price - $1,094,114 Sale Price - $1,084,518 Market Time - 33 days
2012 - 633 sales. List Price - $1,005,901 Sale Price - $972,357 Market Time - 75 days
2011 - 519 sales. List Price - $945,625 Sale Price - $908,328 Market Time - 87 days
2010 - 518 sales. List Price - $925,187 Sale Price - $884,800 Market Time - 79 days
2016 - 352 sales. List Price - $758,231 Sale Price - $750.697 Market Time - 28 days
2015 - 341 sales. List Price - $680,492 Sale Price - $678,313 Market Time - 29 days
2014 - 328 sales. List Price - $644,264 Sale Price - $641,985 Market Time - 25 days
2013 - 366 sales. List Price - $564,380 Sale Price - $560,302 Market Time - 34 days
2012 - 317 sales. List Price - $528,867 Sale Price - $513,443 Market Time - 94 days
2011 - 246 sales. List Price - $488,075 Sale Price - $470,432 Market Time - 107 days
2010 - 262 sales. List Price - $485,943 Sale Price - $465,320 Market Time - 126 days
2016 - 48 sales. List Price - $1,145,217 Sale Price - $1,166,734 Market Time - 21 days
2015 - 75 sales. List Price - $944,461 Sale Price - $935,701 Market Time - 23 days
2014 - 71 sales. List Price - $832,469 Sale Price - $827,208 Market Time - 31 days
2013 - 68 sales. List Price - $736,822 Sale Price - $732,392 Market Time - 34 days
2012 - 65 sales. List Price - $687,174 Sale Price - $662,432 Market Time - 75 days
2011 - 54 sales. List Price - $616,887 Sale Price - $590,824 Market Time - 94 days
2010 - 60 sales. List Price - $617,627 Sale Price - $578,889 Market Time - 98 days