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East Boston's Skyrocketing Popularity Among Renters: An Interview with Keith Harrington of Hillway Realty

By Keith Harrington

With downtown Boston rents skyrocketing, college students who attend downtown schools such as Berklee College, Suffolk University, and Emerson College are struggling to find affordable housing. Students need to be within a short commute to school, but few can pay the record high rents in the neighboring areas such as Back Bay and Beacon Hill.

Students need a less expensive option with a fast commute. Picking up on this trend, Keith Harrington, the owner of Hillway Realty a rental and sales brokerage, started managing luxurious apartments in Jeffries Point and began marketing them to students.

Where is Jeffries Point?

Jeffries Point is the community in East Boston that borders the water and faces downtown Boston and the Seaport. It is located within a close proximity to the Maverick T Station on the Blue Line. The Maverick T can get you downtown in 7-10 minutes.

How are the views?

The best in Boston. It really does not get much better then the views across the water into the seaport and Downtown. I can't believe that with all the views and waterfront property there, that it has not been developed into luxury apartments.

Are there parks and nice restaurants?

There are beautiful parks along the water including Piers Park, Porzio Park (my personal favorite), East Boston Greenway, Lewis Mall, and Sumner and Lamson Street Playground.

Some of Boston's finest restaurant are in East Boston, including the famous Santarpios and Rinos. Santarpio's is world renowned for there pizza and Rino's for authentic Italian fine dining.

How long is the commute to the schools?

The commute is 7-10 minutes to the downtown schools. Our current tenants rave about how quickly they get to school and the fast moving Blue Line compares to the Green Line. Maverick T Station is also only 2 stops to the State Street T Station. This allows young professionals a quick commute with easy access to the financial district.

What are the rents per student compared to living downtown?

We have rents ranging from $700 a bedroom to $850 a bedroom. The key is these apartments have granite counter tops, stainless steel appliances, hardwood flooring, dishwashers and free laundry.

Are there any big developments happening in Jeffries Point?

Yes there are about hundreds of units planned to be built and already being built on the waterfront. Large developers have plans to change the entire Jeffries Point waterfront. When that happens there will be an influx of bars and restaurants down by the water, similar to what happened in Charlestown and the Seaport.

What kind of students are you getting in Jeffries Point? Party goers?

No, not at all. The opposite. Jeffries Point is a quiet, quaint community. We are getting students who enjoy walks through the park, sitting by the water and looking at the city, and who aren't looking to go out partying every night.

I heard you have an apartment with a 3d printer in it, is that true?

It is! But it is already rented until September 2015. However, each of the East Boston properties that I manage do come with flat screen TV'S included in each unit's living room.

For more information on Keith Harrington and his Eastie buildings you can email him at keith@hillwayrealty.com.

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