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On the Block

For sale: Homes near downtown areas

These properties in Braintree, Melrose, and Norwood offer easy access to shopping and other amenities.

$349,900

98 SCHOOL STREET / BRAINTREE

SQUARE FOOTAGE > 1,702

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LOT SIZE > 0.16 acre

BEDROOMS > 3 BATHS > 1 full, 1 half

LAST SOLD FOR > $360,000 in 2005

Daniel Lauria, Lauria Real Estate, 781-843-2782, lauriarealestate.com

PROS Braintree Square, with a deli, restaurants, and other shops, is less than a half mile from this little house. One of its best features is the family room added to the back. With sliders to the deck and lots of big windows, the room overlooks the kid- and dog-friendly landscaped and fenced yard. The living room at the front has a fireplace surrounded by a convincing faux-brick wall. The kitchen has stainless-steel appliances. CONS New owners will want to update the kitchen floor and cabinets. The full bath is on the first floor.

$374,900

129 VINTON STREET / MELROSE

SQUARE FOOTAGE > 1,511

LOT SIZE > 0.18 acre

BEDROOMS > 3 BATHS > 1 full, 1 half

LAST SOLD FOR > $380,000 in 2009

Juliet Leydon, RE/Max Heritage, 781-979-0100, agentexpertise.com

PROS The stitcher, the baker, the quesadilla maker, and everything else that Melrose’s vibrant downtown offers is a walk away, as is the commuter rail. Located on a pretty street, the home is good-looking, with accent colors on its stately columns. The long, narrow living room has exceptional woodwork, a gas fireplace, and built-in bookcases. A huge half bath, as well as pantry and laundry, are located off the kitchen, which has newer appliances. The master bedroom has a walk-in closet. CONS The commuter rail runs along the edge of the yard, which needs tending to return to its loveliness.

$549,900

9 BEECH STREET / NORWOOD

SQUARE FOOTAGE > 3,200

LOT SIZE > 0.17 acre

BEDROOMS > 4 BATHS > 2 full, 1 half

LAST SOLD FOR > $454,100 in 2005

Sherry Lombard, New Homes Marketing, 508-864-4344, 9beechstreet.com

PROS Downtown shops and restaurants are around the corner, while schools, the library, town swimming pool, and commuter rail are nearby, too. The big kitchen in this renovated 1880 home has stainless appliances and cherry cabinets. The second floor has three bedrooms, laundry, and a full bath; the light-filled landing on this level would make a great office or reading nook. On the third floor, on its own zone for air conditioning, is a master suite with a huge walk-in closet. CONS The exterior needs painting.

— Vanessa Parks
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