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10 Things to Know Before Moving to Andover, MA

Written by Allie Gardner

Andover, Massachusetts, has everything one could want in a picture-perfect New England village: old buildings, a charming main street lined with mom-and-pop shops, and proximity to the region’s breathtaking scenery. Those in search of excellent educational opportunities, cultural excursions, and relaxing summer weekends spent swimming, boating, and fishing in one of Andover’s many ponds and lakes will find the town to be a dream come true. 

It’s not by chance that everything is so charming here. The Andover Preservation Commission collaborates with contemporary businesses to preserve the town’s historic charm while fostering economic growth.

Let’s talk about ten things to know before moving to Andover, MA.

1. Andover is an affluent and flourishing city

Because of its proximity to Boston, as well as the presence of numerous corporate headquarters and well-known technology companies, Andover boasts an average annual household income of more than $140,000. And with only 35,000 residents, there’s plenty of room to stretch out while maintaining a strong feeling of community. Nearly 40% of Andover’s citizens have earned a Master’s degree, making it one of the most highly educated communities in the country. 

Over the past half-century, the agricultural town of Andover has been transformed by the presence of highly qualified employees and their families attracted by the high wages offered by a number of large corporations. 

2. The city’s houses are gorgeous

The city council of Andover is committed to preserving the city’s historic buildings. Andover showcases a wide range of American styles from the 17th century to the present day. The early 20th century saw the preservation of many beautiful revival styles, including the Gothic and Tutor. 

These houses, with a median value of over $900,000, contribute to Andover’s already high cost of living, though. 

3. The summers are comfortable

If you want to escape the sweltering heat of the summer, you’ll be happy to know that the weather in northern New England tends to be on the cooler side. Andover rarely sees more than 82 degrees Fahrenheit even in the height of summer. The nearby Harold Parker State Forest is a favorite trekking destination on days like this. 

There is a lot of rain in this seaside town as well, and residents are used to wetter-than-average winters and wetter-than-normal springs. During the winter months, temperatures can fall into the teen range.

4. Work in the tech or education sector

When it comes to employment opportunities, Andover may surprise you with the amount of well-known companies and innovative startups that have set up shop there. One of the most promising local businesses is Aras, which was highlighted in The Boston Globe not too long ago. Phillips, Raytheon, and Pfizer are some other examples of well-known companies. 

Andover’s several colleges and universities, together with the town’s innumerable mom-and-pop shops, are major employers. Even though Andover might be rather expensive, it has become a popular destination for IT magnates seeking a more relaxed lifestyle away from the hustle and bustle of the Boston big city vibes.

5. Attend Massachusetts School of Law or Merrimack College

Fantastic schools are a major selling point for the town of Andover to anyone considering a move there. Public primary, middle, and high school schools in Andover consistently rank among the best in Massachusetts. The town’s center is home to a number of excellent educational institutions, including the highly regarded Phillips Academy, as well as several other private schools, including Montessori and Quaker establishments. 

Indeed, Andover attracts a student population partly because of the proximity of several prestigious educational institutions. While Merrimack College is located in nearby North Andover, Massachusetts School of Law is located in the city itself. Students in Andover have the option of commuting to the North Campus of Boston University or to Northeastern University, both of which are less than ten miles away.

The variety of exciting opportunities available in Andover is a major selling point for the town as a whole. Outdoor activities and exposure to different cultures often help bring about a sense of stability in one’s life. 

Pomp’s Pond is conveniently located in the middle of town, and it serves as a recreational hub by providing memberships, swim classes, and boat rentals. On the outskirts of town, in a protected watershed area, you’ll find Haggets Pond and its network of scenic hiking and bike routes. There are more options for families and individuals to enjoy nature on Indian Ridge Reservation.

The Addison Gallery of American Art is a must-see, as it houses an extensive collection of well-known works by American artists. The town’s growing cultural and artistic sector is bolstered by a cluster of privately managed art galleries in the downtown area.

7. It’s safer than 88% of US cities

Andover is generally what comes to mind when one imagines a perfect representation of a small, typical American town. This place is not simply a lovely, scholarly, and historically significant town but also a very secure one. Andover has a 66% lower crime rate than Massachusetts as a whole and a 76% lower crime rate than the rest of the country. That puts Andover ahead of 88% of American cities when it comes to safety.

8. Enjoy a slower pace of life

Andover is what most people would call a little town because its population is under 40 thousand. It’s not so tiny that you’ll instantly feel familiar with everyone there and learn all of their names, but it’s just the right size that won’t make you feel stifled, either. 

Andover’s size is one of the town’s greatest selling points for those seeking a less hectic pace of life or a more tranquil setting for raising a family.

9. Living costs are 53% higher than the national average

Do you find the idea of living in Andover appealing? Well, quality often comes at a premium, and Andover is no exception. With an index of 153.8, the cost of living in this city exceeds both state and national averages, placing it on the higher end of the spectrum.

The city has a median home price of $909,000, which is already twice the national average.

10. Check out Palmers Restaurant & Tavern or Perfect Perk Cafe Downtown

The downtown area of Andover is its beating heart; its friendly, bustling vibe is enjoyed by both locals and visitors.

From traditional New England clam chowder to more exotic fare like Thai curries, Palmers Restaurant & Tavern has something for everyone. 

The “Perfect Perk Cafe” is an inviting spot to relax with a cappuccino and a good book or get some work done on your laptop.

Outdoor art festival “Andover Art in the Park” showcases regional artists and musicians every summer in Andover’s central park.

In Conclusion

In summary, Andover, Massachusetts, is a town that seamlessly blends history, culture, and a strong sense of community. Its charming downtown, rich educational opportunities, and commitment to preserving its heritage make it an enticing place to call home. The slower pace of life appeals to those seeking a tranquil yet vibrant community in the heart of New England.

Although living here comes with quite the price tag, you’ll find out that it’s definitely worth it.  

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