Originally built in 1909, the renovated R.H. Stearns department store is a cornerstone of downtown Boston’s former shopping district. The building, with high, intricately designed ceilings, and sturdy Roman-style columns, was developed in the beaux art style of architecture, which was very common in the early 1900s. It was added to Massachusetts’ Registry of Historic places in 1980.
Today, the 11 floor Stearns building houses 140 units for senior and disabled residents and is a smoke free building with 2 restaurants, a Nail Salon and a Hearing Aid Store.
Overlooking Boston Common, the start of the famed Freedom Trail, and one of the oldest public parks in the country, residents are within walking distance to many attractions city living has to offer, including theaters, historic sites, shops, restaurants and hospitals, all easily and conveniently accessible by Boston’s public transportation system.
Spacious studios and one bedroom apartments contain all standard appliances, wall to wall carpeting, emergency medical pull stations, and a tenant controlled, central air conditioning and heating system.
The onsite management office offers onsite Resident Service Coordinator, security guard, intercom system, and 24 hour emergency maintenance for your safety.
The New England Affordable Housing Management Association has recognized The Stearns as a Community of Quality. A Community of Quality is certified as having achieved a high standard of excellence in the way they are managed, the services they provide residents, the experience and training of personnel, and other criteria.
The Stearns is a smoke-free community.
Studio and One Bedroom Apartments Include:
- Safety Rails in Bathroom
- Full Kitchen with Dishwasher
- Spacious Living Areas
- Emergency Pull Cord System
- Intercom System
- Video View of Lobby
- Window Treatments
Building Amenities Include:
- 24-Hour, On-Site Security
- 24- Hour Maintenance
- Service Coordinator
- Newly Renovated Sun Decks
- Spacious Community Room with Kitchen
- Coin Operated Laundry Facilities
- Computer Lab with Internet Access
- On-Site Management Staff
We hope this section helps answer a few of the questions you may have. If you have a question not covered in this section, or if you would like more information, please call The Stearns at (617) 451-0169. We look forward to hearing from you!
What type of housing is The Stearns?
The Stearns is a subsidized housing community for seniors age of 62 & over and individuals with disabilities. The term “subsidized housing” means that the rent is based on income. A resident of the community pays approximately 30% of their income as rent.
How is rent calculated?
A resident pays approximately 30% of their income as rent, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), a U.S. government agency, will pay the remainder of the rent
What does the rent include?
Monthly rental of the apartment, as well as heat and hot water, & trash.
Is there a lease?
Yes, there is a one-year lease. After one year the lease automatically becomes month to month. Residents are then required to give management a thirty day notice to vacate their unit.
How many apartments are at The Stearns, and how big are they?
The Stearns has 140 apartments.
How big are the apartments?
Depending on the location of the apartment and the floor plan, these spacious apartments range between 503-605 square feet.
How do I get started with the move-in process?
Unfortunately, at this time, we are unable to add any additional names to the waiting list. The waiting list for The Stearns is closed.
Is there a waiting list for residency?
Yes. There is a very long waiting list at The Stearns.
What is the Security Deposit?
The Security Deposit is the same as one month’s full rent. This deposit is due in full at the signing of the lease.
Do you allow pets?
The Stearns welcomes you to bring your small pet along with you.
Is there additional storage space available?
No. There is no additional storage space outside the apartments.
Is there an elevator?
Yes, there are two elevators located in the center of the building easily accessible by all residents, on all floors.
Is parking available?
Due to the downtown location, there is no parking available at The Stearns.
How many keys do I receive?
Residents receive an apartment key, a key to a locked mailbox for their apartment, and an access key to the main entry. Our main entrance is intercom controlled and automatically opens with the key.
Are there any planned activities?
The Stearns has an onsite Resident Services Coordinator who provides support and assistance to tenants and organizes different events, classes, seminars and programs. Monthly activities include bingo, board games, pot-luck meals, and birthday gatherings. Activities are subject to change.
Are there on-site laundry facilities?
Yes. There is an onsite laundry facility located on the 11th floor. This laundry center contains three coin operated washers and three coin operated dryers with folding and hanging areas and a wash sink for the convenience of our residents.
Is there any public transportation available?
Yes. The Stearns is conveniently located in Boston’s downtown area. This location offers walking access to shopping, restaurants, services and entertainment. There is an MBTA bus stop directly in front of the building and the Park Street subway station, which provides access to trollies and trains is directly across the street.