The 10 Best Boston, MA Neighborhoods To Live In For 2019

We used science and data to determine which neighborhoods in Boston are the best of the best.

Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2019. This is our fifth time ranking the best neighborhoods to live in Boston.
Best Neighborhoods In Boston

Do you like your neighborhood?

Is it friendly, and where everyone knows their neighbors?

No matter if you live in the sticks or in an apartment building in downtown Boston, you have a little pocket that you can call home. And each neighborhood is different.

Smaller neighborhoods usually have obvious benefits — less crime, a slower pace of life, and a lower cost of living. But not all Boston neighborhoods are created equal. Some are better than others. But which ones?

Instead of relying on public opinion and speculation, we wanted to get the facts straight and find out which neighborhoods in Boston are the best. If you’re in one of the places we’re about to highlight, odds are you know you’ve got it made.

Here are the best neighborhoods in Boston for 2019:

  1. Back Bay-Beacon Hill (Homes)
  2. Charlestown (Homes)
  3. West Roxbury (Homes)
  4. Central (Homes)
  5. South End (Homes)

So what’s the best neighborhood to live in Boston for 2019? According to the most recent census data, Back Bay-Beacon Hill looks to be the best Boston neighborhood to live in.

Read on to see how we determined the places around Boston that deserve a little bragging rights or maybe you’re interested in the worst neighborhoods in Boston.

Once you’re done, you can look at the bottom of the story for a complete chart of every neighborhood we looked at from best to worst.

For more Massachusetts reading, check out:

How we determined the best Boston hoods in 2019

In order to rank the best neighborhoods in Boston, we had to determine what criteria defines a “best”.

Using crime, census, and extrapolated BLS data, we arrived at the following set of criteria:

  • High incomes
  • Low unemployment rates
  • Low crime
  • High home prices
  • High population densities (A proxy for things to do)

We then ranked each neighborhood with scores from 1 to 16 in each category, where 1 was the best.

Next, we averaged the rankings for each neighborhood to create a best neighborhood index.

And finally, we crowned the neighborhood with the lowest best neighborhood index the “Best City Neighborhood In Boston.” We’re lookin’ at you, Back Bay-Beacon Hill.

Read on below to learn more about what it’s like to live in the best places Boston, Massachusetts has to offer. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the neighborhoods in the city from best to worst.

Back Bay-Beacon Hill Boston, MA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 28,988
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $776,224 (1st best)
Median Income: $93,684 (1st best)
More on Back Bay-Beacon Hill: Homes For Sale | Data

Beacon Hill is a historic neighborhood in Boston, Massachusetts. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, the population of Boston’s Beacon Hill neighborhood is 9,023.

Charlestown Boston, MA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 17,208
Rank Last Year: 4 (Up 2)
Median Home Value: $426,124 (4th best)
Median Income: $91,998 (3rd best)
More on Charlestown: Homes For Sale | Data

Charlestown is the oldest neighborhood in Boston, Massachusetts, United States. Originally called Mishawum by the Massachusett, it is located on a peninsula north of the Charles River, across from downtown Boston, and also adjoins the Mystic River and Boston Harbor. Charlestown was laid out in 1629 by engineer Thomas Graves, one of its early settlers, in the reign of Charles I of England. It was originally a separate town and the first capital of the Massachusetts Bay Colony.

West Roxbury Boston, MA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 32,855
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $407,058 (5th best)
Median Income: $91,763 (4th best)
More on West Roxbury: Homes For Sale | Data

West Roxbury is a neighborhood in Boston, Massachusetts bordered by Roslindale to the northeast and Hyde Park to the southeast. West Roxbury is often mistakenly confused with Roxbury, but the two are not connected. West Roxbury is separated from Roxbury by Jamaica Plain and Roslindale.

Central Boston, MA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 33,579
Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 2)
Median Home Value: $595,762 (2nd best)
Median Income: $93,484 (2nd best)
More on Central: Homes For Sale | Data

Central Square is a section of the neighborhood of East Boston in Boston, Massachusetts, United States. The square begins at the intersection of Bennington Street and Meridian Street, continues up Meridian to its intersection with White Street, and includes all the area to the left. The squares intersecting streets also include Border, Saratoga, and Eutaw Street. It is within close proximity of the entrance to the Sumner Tunnel, which motorists take to downtown Boston.

South End Boston, MA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 34,304
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Home Value: $558,804 (3rd best)
Median Income: $72,022 (8th best)
More on South End: Homes For Sale | Data

The South End is a neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts. It is bordered by Back Bay, Chinatown, and Roxbury. It is distinguished from other neighborhoods by its Victorian style houses and the many parks in and around the area. The South End is the largest intact Victorian row house district in the country, which is made up of over 300 acres. Eleven residential parks are scattered around the South End. In 1973, the South End was listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The construction of the South End began in 1849 when the neighborhood was built on tidal marshes.

Putting A Bow On Our Analysis Of The Best Neighborhoods In Boston

If you’re measuring the neighborhoods in Boston where crime is low and everyone wants to live, this is an accurate list.

As we mentioned earlier, the neighborhoods in Boston aren’t all good. Roxbury takes the title of the worst neighborhood to live in Boston.

We ranked the neighborhoods from best to worst in the chart below.

For more Massachusetts reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Neighborhoods To Live In Boston For 2019

Rank Neighborhood Population Home Value Median Income
1 Back Bay-Beacon Hill 28,988 $776,224 $93,684
2 Charlestown 17,208 $426,124 $91,998
3 West Roxbury 32,855 $407,058 $91,763
4 Central 33,579 $595,762 $93,484
5 South End 34,304 $558,804 $72,022
6 Allston-Brighton 67,713 $306,048 $61,281
7 South Boston 38,206 $367,531 $86,753
8 Jamaica Plain 45,158 $359,364 $75,652
9 Roslindale 36,129 $293,614 $80,867
10 South Dorchester 66,765 $352,652 $61,578
11 Hyde Park 35,116 $324,484 $65,408
12 Fenway-Kenmore 38,280 $241,970 $48,949
13 East Boston 43,436 $276,989 $56,961
14 North Dorchester 27,791 $343,331 $56,252
15 Mattapan 39,010 $237,849 $45,798
16 Roxbury 63,672 $273,402 $34,616

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.