The 10 Best Boston Suburbs To Live In For 2024

The best Boston suburbs are Newton and Melrose for 2024 based on Saturday Night Science.

While big cities like Boston offer culture, cuisine, and charisma, they also deliver terrible traffic, towering expenses, and a taxing quality of life.

With that in mind, we wanted to uncover the best suburbs around Boston. These burbs have all of the benefits of being near Boston without actually having to be in the city.

Of course, not all suburbs of Boston are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. Using Saturday Night Science, we delve into the factors that matter most, from commutes and housing costs to community vibes, to help you uncover the perfect suburban spots in the Greater Boston area.

Table Of Contents: Top Ten | Methodology | Summary | Table

What’s the best suburb of Boston? Newton ranks as the best suburb of Boston for 2024 based on the most recent Census and FBI data. If you happen to be a resident of Newton, you’re probably not too surprised to find it on the top our list.

We’ll tell you what makes each of these 10 Boston ‘burbs better than the rest–but first, a bit about our methodology.

Feel free to check out some more reading about Massachusetts:

The 10 Best Boston Suburbs To Live For 2024

Newton, MA

Source: Wikipedia User John Phelan | CC BY 3.0
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Population: 88,453
Median Income: $176,373
Unemployment Rate: 3.5%
Poverty Rate: 4.6%
More on Newton: Data | Crime | Cost Of Living | Real Estate

Newton is always mentioned as one of the best suburbs in the Boston area. We’ll tell you the good about “Awesome Newton.”

Everyone here is rich; families average $176,373 a year, which is the highest in the Boston region. And only 3.51% are out of work. Homes average more than $1,367,720 each.

Melrose, MA

Source: Wikipedia User | CC-BY-SA-3.0
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Population: 29,477
Median Income: $126,305
Unemployment Rate: 3.9%
Poverty Rate: 4.0%
More on Melrose: Data | Crime | Cost Of Living | Real Estate

Melrose is the second best ‘burb we looked at near Boston for 2024.

It ranks 2nd for incomes in the area and only 1.55% of residents lack insurance, good for 2nd best.

Cambridge, MA

Source: Flickr User EandJsFilmCrew | CC BY-SA 2.0
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Population: 117,962
Median Income: $121,539
Unemployment Rate: 3.3%
Poverty Rate: 12.1%
More on Cambridge: Data | Crime | Cost Of Living | Real Estate

Here in Cambridge, it’s really safe, and residents are just about as rich as you’ll see in the Boston metro area.

The bad side? Schools are more crowded, and the cost of living puts a large part of the city out of reach for most families.

But price is based on demand and a lot of people want to live in Cambridge.

Review Of Cambridge by HomeSnacks User

Crime is low, I believe. The school system is exceptional and unique with the “controlled choice” policies that foster diversity. Lots of quirky and trendy places to eat and hangout.

Lots of young adults because of all the colleges. Also the style is very historic with all the brick.

Somerville, MA

Source: Flickr User JoeInSouthernCA | CC BY-ND 2.0
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Population: 80,464
Median Income: $120,778
Unemployment Rate: 2.8%
Poverty Rate: 10.2%
More on Somerville: Data | Crime | Cost Of Living | Real Estate

Somerville ranks as the 4th best suburb of Boston for 2024.

You won’t find many better places to raise your kids in the region than in Somerville and the schools are some of the best around.

Waltham, MA

Source: Wikipedia User Tim Pierce | CC BY-SA 3.0
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Population: 64,711
Median Income: $113,443
Unemployment Rate: 3.1%
Poverty Rate: 8.9%
More on Waltham: Data | Crime | Cost Of Living | Real Estate

Coming in as the fifth best is Waltham.

Waltham gets kudos for having the 6th most expensive homes in the Boston area, where houses sell for an average of $747,940. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

Review Of Waltham by HomeSnacks User

Close to everything, new high school being built

Location, ease of commute, excellent restaurants, very diverse, close to everything.

Medford, MA

Source: Wikipedia User John Phelan | CC BY 3.0
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Population: 61,748
Median Income: $114,863
Unemployment Rate: 4.2%
Poverty Rate: 7.4%
More on Medford: Data | Crime | Cost Of Living | Real Estate

Medford is proud of its 6th place finish on this list. And here’s why.

Most residents have great jobs and the unemployment rate sits at 4.2%.

According to online reports, Medford is quickly becoming one of the more affluent suburbs in the Boston area, meaning you need to get in soon.

Review Of Medford by HomeSnacks User

Schools s***s. Sirens keep me up all night. I wanna die.

The new target is cool. The people who work there s**k though.

Beverly, MA

Source: Wikipedia User Elizabeth B. Thomsen | CC BY-SA 3.0
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Population: 42,414
Median Income: $99,525
Unemployment Rate: 3.3%
Poverty Rate: 10.5%
More on Beverly: Data | Crime | Cost Of Living | Real Estate

The 7th best suburb on our list goes to Beverly.

Beverly schools are some of the best in the region, and crime is really low. The cost of living makes it a lot more desirable for many families, especially first-time home buyers.

And, it’s only 18.0 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

Woburn, MA

Source: Wikipedia User | GFDL
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Population: 40,992
Median Income: $104,780
Unemployment Rate: 7.4%
Poverty Rate: 6.5%
More on Woburn: Data | Crime | Cost Of Living | Real Estate

Woburn is growing quickly, and for a good reason. Crime is far below average, and most residents are gainfully employed. Even the cost of living is reasonable.

A solid 1.56% of people lack insurance, good for 3rd in the area.

Watertown, MN

Source: Wikipedia User AlexiusHoratius | CC BY-SA 3.0
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Population: 4,712
Median Income: $101,667
Unemployment Rate: 0.0%
Poverty Rate: 7.3%
More on Watertown: Data | Real Estate

Is ‘Everything Better In Watertown?’


It placed 9th on our list thanks to the fact that it’s really expensive to live here, but the schools are great, so you get what you pay for in that regard.

Peabody, MA

Source: Wikipedia User John Phelan | CC BY 3.0
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Population: 54,204
Median Income: $91,125
Unemployment Rate: 4.4%
Poverty Rate: 7.0%
More on Peabody: Data | Crime | Cost Of Living | Real Estate

And rounding out the top ten for 2024 is Peabody.

This city is far above average in every category, and the best part? It’s far more affordable than the other cities listed above. So, you get a big bang for your buck here.

Methodology: How We Determined The Best Suburbs Around Boston for 2024

Figuring out the best suburbs around Boston was simple. We used Saturday Night Science to find things people like about living in the suburbs and then locate the suburbs with those things.

We analyzed the newest American Community Survey data for 2018-2022 to research each suburb. We decided upon the following criteria:

  • Low unemployment rate
  • High median household incomes
  • Population density (lots of things to do)
  • High home values
  • A lot of college-educated people
  • Low poverty
  • High rate of insured families

We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Boston.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 4,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 24 suburbs to evaluate around Boston.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 24 in each category, where 1 was the “best.

Next, we averaged the rankings for each place to create a quality-of-life index.

Finally, we crowned the city with the best quality of life index, the “Best Suburb near Boston.” We’re lookin’ at you, Newton.

This result may differ from our state-wide data as we did not include commute times and crime for this analysis to allow for a more extensive selection of suburbs.

We updated the data for 2024. This report is our tenth time ranking the best Boston suburbs. Skip to the end to see the list of all the suburbs ranked from best to worst.

Summary: Welcome to the Best Boston ‘Burbs of 2024

We said it once, and we’ll say it again–life in the big city isn’t for everyone. At least not all the time.

The best suburbs of Boston are .

So if you’re craving the amenities of a larger city like Boston but don’t want to deal with the drawbacks, one of these suburbs might be for you.

For more Massachusetts reading, check out:

Table: Best Boston Suburbs

Rank City Population Median Income Average Home Price
1 Newton, MA 88,453 $176,373 $1,367,720
2 Melrose, MA 29,477 $126,305 $819,404
3 Cambridge, MA 117,962 $121,539 $946,296
4 Somerville, MA 80,464 $120,778 $878,789
5 Waltham, MA 64,711 $113,443 $747,940
6 Medford, MA 61,748 $114,863 $753,975
7 Beverly, MA 42,414 $99,525 $671,453
8 Woburn, MA 40,992 $104,780 $670,017
9 Watertown, MA 4,712 $101,667 $352,082
10 Peabody, MA 54,204 $91,125 $628,178
11 Salem, MA 44,541 $79,196 $556,514
12 Gloucester, MA 29,830 $84,465 $684,078
13 Quincy, MA 100,981 $90,668 $617,826
14 Marlborough, MA 41,391 $94,199 $521,510
15 Malden, MA 65,463 $90,295 $609,995
16 Revere, MA 60,577 $78,968 $558,745
17 Southfield, MA 76,107 $63,980 $234,297
18 Taunton, MA 59,436 $72,782 $455,672
19 Everett, MA 48,685 $77,796 $567,525
20 Lynn, MA 100,653 $70,046 $511,699
21 Lowell, MA 114,737 $73,008 $435,128
22 Brockton, MA 104,713 $74,016 $455,030
23 Chelsea, MA 39,890 $71,051 $483,659
24 Lawrence, MA 88,067 $53,977 $436,042
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.