Brighton - 02135
Housing in Brighton
Brief SynopsisBoston is a patchwork of diverse neighborhoods sewn together over many years. Brighton is one such neighborhood. It looks like a small town square within a couple-of-minutes drive of the Boston proper; but unlike downtown Boston, you will not notice skyscrapers stabbing this sky. The neighborhood is full of modest shops and apartments. Brighton’s residential atmosphere gives this area a somewhat suburban feel, yet within Boston city limits. The area boasts:
- many parks and open spaces
- one of the lowest median age levels in Boston
- a highly diverse demographic
- a large student population
Where is Allston-Brighton?
Brighton is located on the western edge of Allston, bordering Brookline and Chestnut Hill to the south, Boston College and Newton to the west, and Cambridge, Watertown, and the Charles River to the north. Here you can find recreational opportunities like canoeing, running, and biking. The boundaries between Allston and Brighton tend to be quite blurred – the invisible border between Allston and Brighton shifts depending upon the individual! – but, the Everett Street/Allston Street divide is the most commonly accepted divide, cutting Allston-Brighton in half, with Brighton to the west and Allston to the east. Another divide often used to determine one from the other is the zip code: 02134 is strongly associated with Allston while 02135 covers much of Brighton; however, this ignores that part of Brighton which is in the 02467 zip code.
HousingIf you are planning to buy a home in the Brighton-Allston area, stick to Brighton for a quieter and more stable environment. Unlike Allston’s shops and services, Brighton offers parks and open space, tree-lined streets, and a more family-oriented, “community” feel. Brighton is much more likely to have the wooden, triple-decker houses, and more families residing in them, than the small apartment buildings and students in Allston. Brighton tends to be less crowded and quieter than Allston and has more residential areas. Free parking on the street is tight, but available. A residential sticker is required in some areas.
Brighton CenterBrighton Center is the economic hub of the western side of the neighborhood, accessible by the #57 bus line. Why bring up the bus line? While 47% of the population of Brighton drive to work, 36% use mass transit, compared to the 71% and 2% respectively for the United States as a whole. The high number of residents who do not have a car is probably due in part to the number of bus, subway, and commuter choices available. The B section of the Green Line is accessible from many parts of the area.
- Access the City of Boston’s official website which includes a page dedicated to the neighborhood of Brighton.
- If you have school-age children, Brighton lies in the Boston Public School district. Its transportation policies are outlined here.
- It is always wise to check if there is reported criminal activity in the area in which you plan to live. The Boston Police Department has a web page dedicated to Brighton/Allston which you can access for their latest news.
- To keep up with daily goings on, in general, you can check in online with the Allston-Brighton Tab, or, of course, the Boston Globe and the Boston Herald.
- If you have a specific property in mind that you think you might like to buy, the City of Boston maintains a database for the City Assessor which you can access to see what value the City gives the property and what the annual taxes are.
- Boston does offer a residential tax break for primary residences for which you should apply upon your purchase.
Single family detached homes in Brighton are few and far between and have been running from $580,000 to $1,354,800; whereas there are about ten times the number of condos offered for sale from $250,000 to $1,600,000. There are a few more multi-family properties than single-families and they have been offered from $900,000 to $3,400,000. Rentals in the area run from $1,050 to $10,500. Of course, pricing for sales and rentals varies depending upon size, location, and amenities. Real estate sales and pricing are very fluid and can fluctuate in a matter of hours because homes come on and off the market daily… even hourly. What is currently offered for sale is listed below.
The above chart is a visual representation of the cyclical nature of real estate and compares the ups and downs of Brighton to those of the entire city of Boston. The taller the column the better it is for buyers. The shorter the column the better it is for sellers. Hence 2006 was the best time for a buyer to buy in Brighton, while 2016 was a great year for sellers. However, buyers will be happy to know that the graphic below indicates a weakening seller’s market for both Brighton and the rest of Boston.Great Schools provides ratings for most schools in the United States. Below, you can see what schools are near the address you are thinking of buying and then compare it to other neighboring schools.