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The town of West Hartford, Connecticut is ranked one of the best places to live in the country, thanks to its low cost of living, good public schools, and tangible New England charm. Comprising a modest 22-square-miles, the town is five miles from the bustling city of Hartford, and a two-and-a-half-hour drive from Manhattan. And West Hartford has plenty of amenities to stand on its own.
The town is known for the West Hartford Center, a busy commercial district, with independently owned stores and restaurants lining wide, walkable streets. There's also the Mark Twain House & Museum, which is technically in Hartford but is only a 10-minute drive from the center of town; Elizabeth Park, a 102-acre city park with formal gardens and ample green space; and the Noah Webster House, the birthplace of the creator of the first American dictionary.
Best of all, the town is stocked with stately houses priced far below what you'd find in Manhattan, with Zillow reporting a median listing price of $328,450. If any of that sounds appealing to you, here's a taste of what's out there.
This five-bedroom, four-bath house, also pictured top, was built in 1894 and once served as the residence of Hartford poet Wallace Stevens. Vintage touches include crown molding, pocket doors, window seats, and hardwood floors. There's also a gorgeous dining room, complete with a chandelier and a fireplace, in addition to an elegant kitchen with an island and mahogany counters; fireplaces in the master bedroom, office, and living room; and both a stone patio and tiled deck. The house is priced at $599,900.
This four-bedroom, three-bath Colonial was built in 1936, and offers modern updates like recessed lighting and stainless steel appliances in the kitchen. Period highlights include arched doorways and crown molding, in addition to several fireplaces. The master bedroom has an en-suite bath that was recently remodeled, there's a great little sunroom the current owners are using as a playroom, and a big backyard with a patio. The house is priced at $525,000.
If you've got a little more cash on hand, consider this three-bedroom, three-bath French-style house. Built in 1970, the property resembles a country cottage, with an inviting front patio flanked by greenery. Interior highlights include walk-in closets, chandeliers, an elegant formal dining room, arched windows, and a big kitchen with beautiful cabinets and a breakfast bar. There's also a home gym and a wine cellar, in addition to what looks like a basement den. Outdoor space includes a small, circular pool and stone patio in the back. The house is priced at $895,000.
This four-bedroom, three-bath Cape Cod-style house is priced a little lower than some of the other options on this list. Highlights include a cute living room with a fireplace and green accent wall, a kitchen outfitted with granite countertops and wooden cabinetry, lots of big windows, and a massive built-in deck. There's also a lush backyard, a vault, and a master bedroom that looks like it has a private deck entrance. The house is priced at $339,900.
This four-bedroom, four-bath Colonial, built in 1964, features a number of beautiful details, including bay windows, ornate light fixtures, and fireplaces in the living, family, and bonus rooms. The open concept kitchen is outfitted with stainless steel appliances and granite countertops, and there's a little area for casual dining in addition to a formal dining room. There's also a great little office space, and a master master suite with three closets, and a jetted tub and shower in the bath. The house is priced at $539,900.
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