These Are The 20 Best Small Towns In Massachusetts For 2018


We used science and data to determine which small towns in Massachusetts are the best of the best..

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This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Data updated for 2018.

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You’ve seen these lists before: Best places to live in Massachusetts, Most Beautiful Downtowns, etc., etc. But all of them focus on major cities and towns in the Bay State and no one pays attention to the little guy.

Well, that’s all about to change as we put together a list of the best small towns in Massachusetts based on numbers–not opinions or hearsay.

We’ll dive right into our methodology in the next section; but first, we thought you might just want to know which places in Massachusetts ranked the based–you know, based on science.

Before we get to the top 20, here’s a look at the 10 Best Small Towns To Live in Massachusetts for 2018:

  1. Topsfield (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  2. The Pinehills (Homes For Sale)
  3. Cordaville (Homes For Sale)
  4. Dover (Homes For Sale)
  5. West Falmouth (Homes For Sale)
  6. Nahant (Homes For Sale)
  7. Duxbury (Homes For Sale)
  8. Mattapoisett Center (Homes For Sale)
  9. South Duxbury (Homes For Sale)
  10. Essex (Homes For Sale)

If you live in one of these small towns like Topsfield, chances are, you’re not surprised. After all, you know how great you have it.

But for the rest of you–keep reading and we’ll get to just why these small towns made our list.

For more reading on the Bay State check out:

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How We Determined The Coolest Towns In Massachusetts

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using the most recent data from the Census’s 2012-2016 American Community Survey and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is the criteria we used:

  • Population Density (Higher is better)
  • Lowest Unemployment Rates
  • Housing costs (Higher is better. More demand.)
  • Adjusted Median Income (Higher is better)
  • Highly Educated Adults (Higher is better)
  • Insurance Rates (Higher is better)
  • Commute Times (Lower is better)

We looked at places with populations lower than 5,000 people and greater than 1,000, of which, there were a lot – 107 to be exact.

We then ranked each place in each category with scores from 1 to 107, averaged them out, and the lowest scores went to our Best Small Towns in Massachusetts. Top of that list — Topsfield.

Keep reading to find out more about our top 20 best small towns in Massachusetts.

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1. Topsfield

Topsfield, MA

Population: 3,435
Median Income: $128,734 (6th Best)
Median Home Value: $521,600 (13th Best)
More on Topsfield: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

2. The Pinehills


Population: 1,275
Median Income: $98,575 (17th Best)
Median Home Value: $573,000 (7th Best)
More on The Pinehills: Data| Homes For Sale

3. Cordaville


Population: 2,847
Median Income: $170,139 (1st Best)
Median Home Value: $510,500 (15th Best)
More on Cordaville: Data| Homes For Sale

4. Dover


Population: 2,453
Median Income: $169,118 (2nd Best)
Median Home Value: $845,400 (2nd Best)
More on Dover: Data| Homes For Sale

5. West Falmouth


Population: 2,021
Median Income: $121,806 (8th Best)
Median Home Value: $540,100 (11th Best)
More on West Falmouth: Data| Homes For Sale

6. Nahant


Population: 3,471
Median Income: $72,625 (41st Best)
Median Home Value: $519,100 (14th Best)
More on Nahant: Data| Homes For Sale

7. Duxbury


Population: 1,498
Median Income: $165,531 (3rd Best)
Median Home Value: $945,100 (1st Best)
More on Duxbury: Data| Homes For Sale

8. Mattapoisett Center


Population: 3,390
Median Income: $86,724 (20th Best)
Median Home Value: $429,400 (26th Best)
More on Mattapoisett Center: Data| Homes For Sale

9. South Duxbury


Population: 3,684
Median Income: $130,260 (5th Best)
Median Home Value: $683,400 (5th Best)
More on South Duxbury: Data| Homes For Sale

10. Essex


Population: 1,476
Median Income: $109,185 (12th Best)
Median Home Value: $470,600 (21st Best)
More on Essex: Data| Homes For Sale

11. Hopkinton

Hopkinton, MA

Population: 2,794
Median Income: $104,231 (13th Best)
Median Home Value: $398,600 (29th Best)
More on Hopkinton: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

12. North Falmouth


Population: 2,605
Median Income: $80,179 (28th Best)
Median Home Value: $497,400 (17th Best)
More on North Falmouth: Data| Homes For Sale

13. Forestdale


Population: 4,888
Median Income: $93,800 (18th Best)
Median Home Value: $316,000 (57th Best)
More on Forestdale: Data| Homes For Sale

14. Littleton Common


Population: 3,002
Median Income: $86,094 (22nd Best)
Median Home Value: $338,400 (43rd Best)
More on Littleton Common: Data| Homes For Sale

15. Hopedale


Population: 3,812
Median Income: $82,132 (26th Best)
Median Home Value: $276,800 (68th Best)
More on Hopedale: Data| Homes For Sale

16. Westborough


Population: 4,057
Median Income: $80,179 (28th Best)
Median Home Value: $354,900 (40th Best)
More on Westborough: Data| Homes For Sale

17. Marshfield Hills


Population: 2,512
Median Income: $118,884 (9th Best)
Median Home Value: $566,900 (9th Best)
More on Marshfield Hills: Data| Homes For Sale

18. North Pembroke


Population: 2,976
Median Income: $85,581 (23rd Best)
Median Home Value: $381,000 (31st Best)
More on North Pembroke: Data| Homes For Sale

19. Wilbraham


Population: 3,916
Median Income: $102,553 (14th Best)
Median Home Value: $300,800 (61st Best)
More on Wilbraham: Data| Homes For Sale

20. Teaticket


Population: 1,646
Median Income: $62,500 (68th Best)
Median Home Value: $329,300 (50th Best)
More on Teaticket: Data| Homes For Sale

Science Can Tackle Any Issue, Even Small Ones

We said it once and we’ll say it again — this list: it’s just science. We did the research, we crunched the numbers, and it turns out, these 20 small towns in Massachusetts are the best, in which to live.

And who can argue with that?

If you’re curious, here are the worst small towns in Massachusetts:

  1. Warren
  2. Devens
  3. Shirley

For more Massachusetts reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Small Towns In Massachusetts

Rank City Population Median Income Median Home Value
1 Topsfield 3,435 $128,734 $521,600
2 The Pinehills 1,275 $98,575 $573,000
3 Cordaville 2,847 $170,139 $510,500
4 Dover 2,453 $169,118 $845,400
5 West Falmouth 2,021 $121,806 $540,100
6 Nahant 3,471 $72,625 $519,100
7 Duxbury 1,498 $165,531 $945,100
8 Mattapoisett Center 3,390 $86,724 $429,400
9 South Duxbury 3,684 $130,260 $683,400
10 Essex 1,476 $109,185 $470,600
11 Hopkinton 2,794 $104,231 $398,600
12 North Falmouth 2,605 $80,179 $497,400
13 Forestdale 4,888 $93,800 $316,000
14 Littleton Common 3,002 $86,094 $338,400
15 Hopedale 3,812 $82,132 $276,800
16 Westborough 4,057 $80,179 $354,900
17 Marshfield Hills 2,512 $118,884 $566,900
18 North Pembroke 2,976 $85,581 $381,000
19 Wilbraham 3,916 $102,553 $300,800
20 Teaticket 1,646 $62,500 $329,300
21 Williamstown 4,315 $68,094 $331,700
22 Sturbridge 2,506 $101,970 $268,700
23 Deerfield 1,005 $125,515 $278,300
24 Woods Hole 1,045 $70,625 $689,500
25 Green Harbor-Cedar Crest 2,770 $76,750 $356,900
26 Yarmouth Port 4,950 $63,036 $355,100
27 East Sandwich 3,735 $87,315 $489,100
28 East Harwich 4,979 $76,169 $377,200
29 Vineyard Haven 2,142 $50,043 $572,700
30 Fiskdale 2,405 $54,224 $332,200
31 Millis-Clicquot 4,565 $82,917 $316,700
32 Hatfield 1,487 $59,661 $278,200
33 Marion Center 1,357 $70,030 $605,200
34 Lenox 1,833 $48,601 $348,600
35 East Douglas 2,420 $73,871 $241,300
36 Pocasset 3,086 $63,553 $326,700
37 Hanson 1,757 $101,500 $327,100
38 Monument Beach 3,182 $66,563 $336,600
39 Harwich Center 1,423 $78,641 $331,000
40 Bourne 1,054 $52,763 $375,900
41 Harwich Port 1,721 $62,829 $380,700
42 Rutland 2,449 $74,489 $234,800
43 Dennis 2,507 $72,284 $547,900
44 South Deerfield 1,538 $54,336 $283,600
45 Falmouth 3,730 $37,683 $463,900
46 Boxford 2,472 $135,662 $523,300
47 Buzzards Bay 3,348 $71,875 $262,300
48 North Westport 4,694 $67,377 $289,300
49 Marshfield 4,663 $72,619 $379,900
50 Norton Center 2,732 $111,131 $318,600
51 Upton 2,998 $84,149 $328,200
52 Orleans 1,937 $35,096 $436,600
53 West Chatham 1,451 $75,417 $497,200
54 Northwest Harwich 4,044 $65,463 $384,200
55 Smith Mills 4,732 $67,451 $264,200
56 North Brookfield 2,278 $70,968 $225,000
57 Provincetown 2,680 $42,072 $504,800
58 Townsend 1,413 $63,281 $210,000
59 Ipswich 4,215 $57,122 $372,500
60 Granby 1,475 $80,769 $246,300
61 Groton 1,163 $70,714 $364,500
62 Great Barrington 2,419 $47,233 $311,600
63 Sandwich 3,044 $72,917 $338,400
64 Onset 1,226 $46,444 $273,000
65 Brewster 2,088 $63,750 $480,900
66 South Lancaster 1,764 $78,340 $257,100
67 South Ashburnham 1,046 $77,404 $182,000
68 North Eastham 1,742 $49,648 $451,200
69 Rowley 1,576 $73,750 $405,400
70 Chatham 1,429 $54,063 $687,500
71 Raynham Center 4,357 $86,451 $314,400
72 Wareham Center 3,359 $48,333 $241,200
73 Sagamore 3,738 $71,646 $353,000
74 Ayer 2,879 $64,940 $269,600
75 Lunenburg 2,027 $113,816 $243,100
76 North Lakeville 2,683 $65,329 $315,200
77 Dennis Port 2,680 $49,044 $317,200
78 North Seekonk 2,814 $66,481 $238,200
79 West Dennis 2,474 $55,221 $403,200
80 Baldwinville 2,060 $53,833 $182,900
81 West Brookfield 1,120 $53,641 $198,900
82 North Plymouth 3,469 $54,009 $289,900
83 East Brookfield 1,203 $71,250 $204,500
84 Belchertown 3,120 $50,116 $244,700
85 Acushnet Center 2,859 $56,875 $223,000
86 East Dennis 2,824 $61,250 $449,500
87 East Pepperell 1,841 $76,250 $252,000
88 Lee 1,809 $34,334 $223,900
89 Millers Falls 1,075 $62,500 $181,500
90 Northfield 1,246 $48,636 $252,800
91 Ocean Grove 2,669 $54,688 $212,800
92 Salisbury 4,992 $67,554 $333,800
93 Barre 1,259 $43,605 $183,000
94 White Island Shores 1,582 $67,240 $226,900
95 South Dennis 3,582 $50,441 $280,500
96 Holland 1,380 $68,438 $187,200
97 West Wareham 3,081 $62,019 $156,700
98 Pepperell 2,417 $64,663 $270,200
99 Weweantic 1,910 $52,134 $242,800
100 Turners Falls 4,074 $33,218 $187,800

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