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Old 12-25-2012, 06:20 PM
 
3 posts, read 10,635 times
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Hello There,

My wife and i, both 30, currently rent in manhattan. Paying close to 40,000 a year in rent is something we dont want to do anymore. As having a family is not too far off in the future we are looking into moving to north Jersey within a year or so. Im from Westchester and shes from Fairfield County. She hates westchesters lack of nice downtowns and high taxes, and CT (besides Greenwich) is too far away. We have looked at a few towns and loved Ridgewood. I get the feeling that Bergen County is the county we like best. We looked at Westfield and Summit and just didn't like it too much. Ramsey seemed too rural and far from the city. So, besides Ridgewood what should we look at. We want a nice downtown, good schools, not too far from the city and has good proportionof young familes, and a few jews here and there. Any and all advice would be appreciated. We are looking to buy a starter house, preferably for under 600k. Thanks in advance.

-A
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Old 12-25-2012, 06:36 PM
 
1,319 posts, read 3,840,300 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ar1982 View Post
Hello There,

My wife and i, both 30, currently rent in manhattan. Paying close to 40,000 a year in rent is something we dont want to do anymore. As having a family is not too far off in the future we are looking into moving to north Jersey within a year or so. Im from Westchester and shes from Fairfield County. She hates westchesters lack of nice downtowns and high taxes, and CT (besides Greenwich) is too far away. We have looked at a few towns and loved Ridgewood. I get the feeling that Bergen County is the county we like best. We looked at Westfield and Summit and just didn't like it too much. Ramsey seemed too rural and far from the city. So, besides Ridgewood what should we look at. We want a nice downtown, good schools, not too far from the city and has good proportionof young familes, and a few jews here and there. Any and all advice would be appreciated. We are looking to buy a starter house, preferably for under 600k. Thanks in advance.

-A
Hi ar1982 -
I recommend you read this post and post more information http://www.city-data.com/forum/new-j...residents.html

While you provided many info, what you don't say is what you are looking for out of the start house under 600k. 2 bed 3 bath? 5 bed, 3 bath? Does it have to be house. Will condo work? etc.

Lastly...it's NJ and if it's Bergen county...you will have jews, asians, and everyone. Not sure why you specifically mentioned few jews heres there.
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Old 12-25-2012, 06:52 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
495 posts, read 978,319 times
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Oops Westfield was ruled out over Ridgewood..
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Old 12-25-2012, 07:48 PM
 
3 posts, read 10,635 times
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prefer a house....hopefully three bedrooms and 2 bathrooms....reason i said a few jews is because we saw more than one town that A) had no synagogue within ints borders (two towns over was closest) and B) Had less than ten people who identified themselves as jews.

Basically we're not looking for Waspville, USA. Ideally peoperty taxes would be under 15k (although houses we saw in westchester had 25k a year in property taxes) Thanks for the informations.
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Old 12-25-2012, 08:55 PM
 
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Bergen County is great if you are a stock broker or criminal lawyer making $500,000 per year and can afford $15-$20 K in property taxes. Ridgewood is a nice town, there are some Jews but not a ton, but housing options under $600 K are limited.

I'd look at Teaneck, but be careful because part of the town isn't so great, not run down, but just not as nice as other sections. You really are better off looking outside Bergen County, which is sad because it is nice there. I would look at Morristown, which is 45 minutes from the city via car, they also have a train station in town. The rabbinical college of america is there so there'll be Jews, they have two temples, taxes are reasonable, and housing costs are decent. The downtown is nice as well. A second town I'd look at would be Livingston, the downtown is small but they do have one and it's one of the most Jewish towns in the state.
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Old 12-25-2012, 09:06 PM
 
225 posts, read 634,439 times
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Try checking out Fair Lawn. Not sure about its downtown, but should meet many of your requirements.

I see no reason why poster couldn't buy a home in Bergen for under 600k. It's not like Essex is going to be any cheaper especially when it comes to taxes.
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Old 12-25-2012, 09:44 PM
 
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If you're looking to NJ for low taxes, you're going to have a bad time. NJ property taxes are typically on par with or higher than Westchester's, dollar for dollar in property value. However, you can get closer to NYC for the same dollar, and we have no shortage of downtowns.

For $600k you've got lots of choices -- any of the Essex County train towns from South Orange west or on the Montclair line, Livingston (bus commute, at least until you can get a parking permit), plus the Bergen county towns (which I'm less familiar with) and the Union county towns you've seen. Of the Essex towns I've mentioned, Millburn has the lowest taxes, but the highest prices.
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Old 12-25-2012, 09:59 PM
 
1,319 posts, read 3,840,300 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ar1982 View Post
prefer a house....hopefully three bedrooms and 2 bathrooms....reason i said a few jews is because we saw more than one town that A) had no synagogue within ints borders (two towns over was closest) and B) Had less than ten people who identified themselves as jews.

Basically we're not looking for Waspville, USA. Ideally peoperty taxes would be under 15k (although houses we saw in westchester had 25k a year in property taxes) Thanks for the informations.
Ah gotcha. Yes, you will most likely need to hop to near by towns for Synagogue for most of NJ. While NJ has some Jewish population, it's not like the city, Long Island when it comes to Jewish population.

15K prop tax or below would be doable but do expect NJ property tax to be no joke... However if you work in city but live in NJ you won't pay NYC income tax which helps to make up for the difference for owning in NJ while working in city. Typically in return you get better public school...so it beats paying for private school in city. I say typically because some areas like Jersey City aka JC, while still have high prop taxes got crap for public school. Hobken too, although Hoboken's public schools seems to be turning around and getting better slowly with lot of young families staying.

As for my suggestion, check out Fort Lee, Edgewater, Leonia (all Bergen county). Inventory for single home are bit slim but you should be able to find some for 600k or less, 3 bed/2bath, prop tax less than 15k, with good public school districts can be found there. By no means it's top of school like Englewood Cliff but it's also not priced like Englewood Cliff.

However 1hour commute door to door will not be possible unless you live in Edgewater and pay like 300-400 bucks for water ferry. Then you can definitely get there within the hour.

Good luck!
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Old 12-25-2012, 10:05 PM
 
Location: Randolph, NJ
4,073 posts, read 7,874,749 times
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Check out Montclair.
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Old 12-25-2012, 10:26 PM
 
Location: Central Jersey
386 posts, read 622,411 times
Reputation: 964
These might be a far off geographically from where you've been searching, but Highland Park or Metuchen in Middlesex County might possibly be worth looking at. Highland Park has a vibrant Jewish community (it's bounded by an eruv), it has a small walkable downtown, good schools, and a lot of young families, Rutgers professors, and grad students. It's not far from the New Brunswick and Edison stations on the Northeast corridor line. Metuchen also has a small walkable downtown and a train station on the NE corridor line, as well. By central Jersey standards, ANY downtown is pretty novel, but if you didn't like Westfield, these quite possibly won't fit the bill, either. Good luck!
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