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Hi all! I will be attending MIT starting this fall. Very excited! 

I have a slightly unique housing circumstance that I hope someone could help with. I've been working in Boston/Cambridge this past year and have an apartment maybe 20 min walk from MIT. Good neighborhood, my apartment is small but nice, and the rent is definitely-not-cheap but reasonable for the area. I'm wondering if I should either renew my lease or move into MIT graduate housing to be slightly closer to campus/campus life? Does anyone have experience with this sort of thing? 

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YMMV, but my residence is between .7 and 1 miles between where I need to go most days, and walking 2-4 miles daily has been a real life-saver.  If you're even slightly inclined to be sedentary, something to think about.

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3 hours ago, Concordia said:

YMMV, but my residence is between .7 and 1 miles between where I need to go most days, and walking 2-4 miles daily has been a real life-saver.  If you're even slightly inclined to be sedentary, something to think about.

I walk about a mile to and from work these days, so walking doesn't bother me too much. :P I think I'm just more worried that being too far from campus would hamper my ability to immerse myself in grad school "life." Have you found it easy to participate in university activities? 

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Not for that reason.  I am actually living in college-- just a bit away from my library and supervisor.

Oxford is weird though-- your degree course, college membership, and so on have more to do with daily life than raw distance would.

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On 3/1/2018 at 10:31 AM, Concordia said:

Not for that reason.  I am actually living in college-- just a bit away from my library and supervisor.

Oxford is weird though-- your degree course, college membership, and so on have more to do with daily life than raw distance would.

Ah! Sorry, for some reason I didn't see that you go to Oxford. Is the campus very large?

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It's sprinkled around town-- there is no single campus.  Rather like Harvard, in that respect. 

Most of the colleges, departments, and student housing are in a .75-mile radius.  http://www.mapaplan.com/travel-map/oxford-england-city-top-tourist-attractions-printable-street-plan/high-resolution/oxford-top-tourist-attractions-map-01-City-centre-detailed-street-travel-plan-with-must-see-places-sights-landmarks-to-visit-high-resolution.htm

Edited by Concordia
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Hi all, I got admitted to MIT and I'm just trying to find out more about the housing options. I'm from New Zealand and Australia (complicated), so I'm hoping my chances of securing graduate housing is high since I'm from pretty far away.

I haven't seen anyone talk about how Tang Hall/Ashdown House/70 Amherst St/Sidney-Pacific are like over the last 1-2 years, so... Tang Hall is really affordable, but I've heard bad stories about how rundown it can be - I also heard it's been renovated very recently though, so how is Tang Hall like now? 

For the record, I'm looking for a living arrangement whereby I have my own private bedroom, but sharing an apartment (i.e. has a kitchen) with one person, and at most 2 people. 70 Amherst St has a shared kitchen in the hallway, but I'd like to know how intrusive/annoying that can be? 

 

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@AstroMason Also admitted to MIT here - I visited last weekend and talked to current students who all emphatically discouraged me from living in Tang. Apparently, it's still pretty rundown, and is also awkwardly located so it's not as easy as it could be to get to campus. Sidney-Pacific looked pretty nice (we had a seminar in there). 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I will be relocating to the Cambridge/Boston area and I'm looking to rent a studio or a 1-bedroom apartment. The most important aspect is that it will be 1) private (not a shared space in a larger house) and 2) in a relatively safe part of town.

What is a reasonable price for this In the Cambridge or Somerville area? What expectations should/shouldn't I have when searching? Are there any other areas that you would suggest? 

Edited by kaaat
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I'd say it depends on the specific area, probably nothing under $1200-$1300 for a one bedroom. Many more around $1400. My sister is searching right now but more in the Brighton, Allston area.

Which school are you trying to be close to or which T line?

Edited by singinglupines
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I would say if you're looking for a 1-bedroom it would actually be a bit higher, more like $1,400-$1,800. I'm sure you could find things on the lower end of that spectrum, but as someone who's lived in Somerville the past 3 years I would be surprised to find a decent 1-bedroom below $1,300. I don't know where you're going to school, but I would highly value anything walkable to the T (MBTA subway).  Buses are ok, but very unreliable. 

If you change your mind and you are willing to live with roommates I bet you can find nice places between $900-1,300, but I'm less familiar with that arrangement.

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24 minutes ago, singinglupines said:

I'd say it depends on the specific area, probably nothing under $1200-$1300 for a one bedroom. Many more around $1400. My sister is searching right now but more in the Brighton, Allston area.

Which school are you trying to be close to or which T line?

Harvard. I have no knowledge whatsoever of the T-line or the local public transportation in general. I don't mind walking even 5-10 miles.

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19 minutes ago, sweetchild said:

I would say if you're looking for a 1-bedroom it would actually be a bit higher, more like $1,400-$1,800. I'm sure you could find things on the lower end of that spectrum, but as someone who's lived in Somerville the past 3 years I would be surprised to find a decent 1-bedroom below $1,300. I don't know where you're going to school, but I would highly value anything walkable to the T (MBTA subway).  Buses are ok, but very unreliable. 

If you change your mind and you are willing to live with roommates I bet you can find nice places between $900-1,300, but I'm less familiar with that arrangement.

Can you walk to Harvard Square from Somerville and would you recommend living there? I'm totally unfamiliar with the area. I'm married, it's one of various reasons why I would prefer to have my privacy. But just to compare, in general, how much cheaper is a room mate arrangement as opposed to a small studio?

Edited by kaaat
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I absolutely love Somerville - I can't recommend it enough. It's very funky and there's always a bunch of festivals/cultural events going on. The prices have always been a bit cheaper than Cambridge, but that seems to be changing as of late.

Depending on how far you're willing to walk, I'd suggest a couple areas in Somerville:

  • Union Square: Really cool area, tons of restaurants, art, and has a big grocery store. ~30 min walk to Harvard (and probably 20-30 minutes to the closest T stop)
  • Porter Square: Lots of shops/restaurants and also has a big grocery store. Next to Lesley College. ~20 min walk to Harvard or 1 subway stop. It's right on the Red Line (which is the best line in my opinion)
  • Davis Square: Lots of shops/restaurants and has a very small grocery store. Near Tufts. Can't walk to Harvard, but 2 subway stops away. Again it's right on the Red Line.

You can always find in between these areas that are a bit quieter, but also probably cheaper. Let me know if you get anymore specific about your search. I have a bunch of recommendations!

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50 minutes ago, kaaat said:

Harvard. I have no knowledge whatsoever of the T-line or the local public transportation in general. I don't mind walking even 5-10 miles.

Just saw this post. In this case, maybe you do want to walk from Davis. It's <2 miles - the T just seems easier.

Also Somerville/Cambridge is one of the most bike-friendly areas in the country so that's always an option. I ride to work form Somerville to Cambridge on my bike in the nicer weather and it's lovely.

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Yeah, Somerville is awesome. And popular so higher rent prices. I'd also agree that Cambridge tends to be pricier. For apartment shares in Somerville, my friend is paying $750 for one bedroom in four, and has paid $800 before for one in five. I'd second taking the T from Davis to Harvard (it's fairly cheap and 50% off with student pricing) or riding a bike. Though you could walk if you wanted, everything is very walkable!

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Hi,

I'm making the tentative decision to move out to the Boston area to study for my Creative Writing MFA at Emerson College and wish to find out the best place to find housing. I'm hoping for the widest range possible to see if I can find anything affordable (I'm being pragmatic about that part) and have only looked at a couple sites: nesterly.io and apartments.com. I don't want to necessarily rely on Craigslist because, well, it's probably pretty shady. Anyone have a clue about other places where I can find listings for housing, particularly starting in late August/early September? My target date to be out in Boston is August 24th.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hey Ya'll I'm gonna toss this out here.

 

I've been accepted into the MFA program at BU. I'm searching for housing and am looking to do whatever I can to make it affordable (sharing rooms ect.) so if anyone here is hunting and would be down to look together, or has a spot open or any suggestions drop me a line!

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On 3/22/2018 at 4:24 PM, singinglupines said:

I'd say it depends on the specific area, probably nothing under $1200-$1300 for a one bedroom. Many more around $1400. My sister is searching right now but more in the Brighton, Allston area.

Which school are you trying to be close to or which T line?

I have a few questions about Allston. Please forgive my ignorance, I've been reading different comments about it's crime rates/safety concerns. Also, I'm a female in my mid twenties, I don't "go out" to clubs, bars, etc. or stay out late past midnight.

 Is it a reasonably safe area for a woman to live alone? How far is the commute to Harvard campus? Is public transportation to Harvard from Allston a hassle or reasonable to navigate? Are there any parts of the city that should be avoided? 

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Allston is fine. I have a number of friends who live there; it's full of students and some of Harvard's stuff is over there (business school, athletics/gyms, soon part of SEAS). As a mid-twenties woman myself, I personally wouldn't have qualms about living in Allston. It's is about the only place in Boston proper that would be reasonable to live (transportation-wise) if you'll be primarily based on the Cambridge campus. Harvard grad students also live all over Cambridge and Somerville, the latter generally being the cheaper option of those two.

As far as transportation, the 66 bus is the most readily accessible and will take you straight to campus. Depending on where you are, the green line is also close-ish (but it's the green line, which is sort of the least effective of the T lines) (and it's not the way you'd get to campus). By foot it's about a 2 mile walk, but it's also a very reasonable bike ride (about as fast as the bus, under 20 minutes).

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13 hours ago, pterosaur said:

Allston is fine. I have a number of friends who live there; it's full of students and some of Harvard's stuff is over there (business school, athletics/gyms, soon part of SEAS). As a mid-twenties woman myself, I personally wouldn't have qualms about living in Allston. It's is about the only place in Boston proper that would be reasonable to live (transportation-wise) if you'll be primarily based on the Cambridge campus. Harvard grad students also live all over Cambridge and Somerville, the latter generally being the cheaper option of those two.

As far as transportation, the 66 bus is the most readily accessible and will take you straight to campus. Depending on where you are, the green line is also close-ish (but it's the green line, which is sort of the least effective of the T lines) (and it's not the way you'd get to campus). By foot it's about a 2 mile walk, but it's also a very reasonable bike ride (about as fast as the bus, under 20 minutes).

Thank you!

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Hey all, I'm starting an MA at BU this fall and I'm looking into housing at the moment. Regardless of whether I go for a 1BR, with or without a roommate, I'm worried about when will be a good time to lease something. Right now I see most people are subletting for the summer. I will be in Boston from the beginning of August, will that be too late to find anything acceptable? I don't really want to agree to something without visiting first.

I might have the possibility of visiting at the beginning of July for a couple of days--should I try and do that, visit some places and rent something then? Would I be able to rent something for an Aug-Sep move in?

Edited by gramknackers
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2 hours ago, gramknackers said:

Hey all, I'm starting an MA at BU this fall and I'm looking into housing at the moment. Regardless of whether I go for a 1BR, with or without a roommate, I'm worried about when will be a good time to lease something. Right now I see most people are subletting for the summer. I will be in Boston from the beginning of August, will that be too late to find anything acceptable? I don't really want to agree to something without visiting first.

I might have the possibility of visiting at the beginning of July for a couple of days--should I try and do that, visit some places and rent something then? Would I be able to rent something for an Aug-Sep move in?

Because it's such a college town, most leases start on September 1st - in fact, it's rather usual to find a lease that starts anytime other than September 1st. You certainly will have plenty of options to choose from. That said, do realize that the entire city moves on that day so get ready for sheer chaos. Hide yo kids, hide yo wife.

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5 minutes ago, sweetchild said:

Because it's such a college town, most leases start on September 1st - in fact, it's rather usual to find a lease that starts anytime other than September 1st. You certainly will have plenty of options to choose from. That said, do realize that the entire city moves on that day so get ready for sheer chaos. Hide yo kids, hide yo wife.

Right! I can imagine it's a mess. But does it work like...if I go looking beforehand in, say, June-July, can I find something that I would sign for in September? Like a reservation of sorts? (I feel like a rookie adult but uhhh this isn't how it works where I'm from, so!)

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8 minutes ago, gramknackers said:

Right! I can imagine it's a mess. But does it work like...if I go looking beforehand in, say, June-July, can I find something that I would sign for in September? Like a reservation of sorts? (I feel like a rookie adult but uhhh this isn't how it works where I'm from, so!)

You might be able to find a sublet for the summer with an opportunity to renew in September, most likely from another student. I'm sure there are plenty on craigslist. There are also apartments without a 9/1 start that may be a 12-month lease. It can really vary. I personally had a 12-month lease that started on 4/1 and after the 12 months turned into month-to-month. 

I don't know if you'll be able to reserve an apartment more than 1 month out. I typically found that the process moved very quickly and once you've signed you'd probably move in the next month. Sorry I can't be more help there!

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