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Old 01-31-2007, 11:34 AM
 
38 posts, read 127,386 times
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Can anyone recommend smallish quaint towns good for a family with Pre-K to Elementary school kids in either counties.

1. Needs to be a reasonable commute 30-45min to Princeton.
2. Affordable housing would be a plus. We can only afford upto $500K.
3. How are property taxes?
4. What is an excellent school(s) district? Is there anything I should know about school districts (eg. bussing, if i buy in an area will my kids actually go the school that's nearby).
5. Safe town and maybe a walkable small downtown (like a town center eg. main street usa kinda feel)
6. Also looking for convenient shopping (eg. Target, SuperWalmart, Costco) to be somewhat nearby.
7. General pros/cons with either counties
8. We thought of Mercer county but housing is a little expensive for what you get and ppy taxes seem really high. anyone have any thoughts

We actually thought about living in PA as well, like in the Newtown, Yardley, Washington Crossing, New Hope, Langhorne area, but it just seems we don't get as big or as new of a house in PA and the commute would be longer. It seems you get better value for your money in NJ. I've also heard that property taxes are much higher in NJ than PA, but we've compared and they seem to be relatively the same. I've also heard that income taxes are higher in NJ vs. PA's 3-4% flat tax but in our tax bracket it's not that much more. Are our assumptions right? Has anyone else out there gone through this dilemma?

ANY help would be so appreciated as to what family friendly, excellent school towns would be good in either counties.

thanx in advance
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Old 01-31-2007, 12:45 PM
 
9,124 posts, read 33,842,091 times
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I'd say that from Monmouth/Ocean Counties you're going to have a tough time keeping the commute to Princeton under 45 minutes. Either locale requires an east/west commute, which means you're either on 33 (which weaves thru some small towns and gets jammed up all the time) or 195, which everyone takes to get to Trenton and Philly. Even from Howell, which isn't too far East into Monmouth County, Mapquest shows 32 miles, but a 58 minute commute (and I don't disagree with them one bit.....lol)- go further East or South and it only gets worse.

Of course, if you leave the house at 6am and stay at the office until 7pm, the traffic may not be as bad and "maybe" you can make it in 45 minutes. But those kind of hours pretty much defeat the concept of "having a life".

You may want to consider looking up along the Route 1 corridor into Middlesex County (I'm in Woodbridge, and can be in Princeton in 45 minutes to an hour), or along the Route 206 corridor (though 206 can get messy too). To be perfectly honest, Princeton is not a place that's "easy" to get too from almost anywhere that's not going to cost you some big $$$.

Bob
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Old 01-31-2007, 06:32 PM
 
317 posts, read 1,151,867 times
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Default Ditto Bob Kovak

I live in Monmouth county. My sister lives in the Princeton area. There simply is no easy way to "get there from here" - no way around it. It takes me closer to 1 1/2 to get there and I don't usually go duing high traffic times. It's just that you have to wind in and around and over and out once you get off of I195. I don't know of any "quaint" towns in the Princeton area because I don't live there, but if you want, I will ask my sister.
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Old 01-31-2007, 10:33 PM
 
Location: At the local Wawa
538 posts, read 2,297,182 times
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Consider Plainsboro if you prefer NJ, they are building a downtown, and there is still a lot of open space here (but going quick). Easy commute to Princeton, and $500k house should be no problem. Shopping all along Route 1 right in town.

I would prefer to live in Newtown, Yardley, or Langhorne over most NJ areas. Its more like NJ was 20 years ago.
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Old 02-01-2007, 08:06 AM
 
38 posts, read 127,386 times
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Default How about these NJ towns? Help?

Again taking into consideration
1. 30-1hr commute to Princeton
2. $500K max on house (newish home 0-10yrs old)
3. excellent elementary schools (eg. good test scores, no bussing, my child will actually go to the school nearby)
4. taxes are a concern
5. somewhat nearby to shopping (eg. target, costco, superwalmart)
6. walkable interesting downtown (prefer but not necessary)

These are the towns we're thinking of (so far):

a) Plainsboro
b) West Windsor
c) Monmouth Jct
d) Cranbury
e) South Brunswick
f) Milltown
g) Millstone
h) Jackson

i) Middletown
j) Colts Neck
k) Cream Ridge
l) Robbinville
m) Robertsville
n) Monroe

If anyone has any other suggestions for family oriented/good school towns please let me?

Thanx so much
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Old 02-01-2007, 08:11 AM
 
38 posts, read 127,386 times
Reputation: 11
Default Considering these NJ towns? PLEASE HELP !!!

I so need help. We just moved a year ago and now have to move to another state again. It's a lot tougher this time around because the kids have already settled into school and a routine. Plus there's a lot more towns/cities in NJ to consider than we are currently so it makes this decision even more arduous. I would appreciate any help, suggestions, comments to help narrow down the area we want to live in eventually.

Here's our criteria:
1. 30-1hr commute to Princeton
2. $500K max on house (newish home 0-10yrs old)
3. excellent elementary schools (eg. good test scores, no bussing, my child will actually go to the school nearby)
4. taxes are a concern
5. somewhat nearby to shopping (eg. target, costco, superwalmart)
6. walkable interesting downtown (prefer but not necessary)

These are the towns we're thinking of (so far):

a) Plainsboro
b) West Windsor
c) Monmouth Jct
d) Cranbury
e) South Brunswick
f) Milltown
g) Millstone
h) Jackson

i) Middletown
j) Colts Neck
k) Cream Ridge
l) Robbinville
m) Robertsville
n) Monroe

If anyone has any other suggestions for family oriented/good school towns please let me know?

Thanx so much
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Old 02-01-2007, 08:45 AM
 
Location: Tampa Bay Area Florida
7,937 posts, read 18,523,047 times
Reputation: 2004
Sparkle,
WEst windsor schools excellent very expensive starter home over 600k depending on where you live...Millstone Twp, I built a house there schools are awful my son was behind the cirriculum when we moved to jackson, 2.5 yrs ago Love Jackson My kids went to Elms Elem which is a honor of excellence school, it has been open for 3 years...to be on My side of Jackson homes range between 550k and up, my house is for sale for 639,900 Colts Neck well unless you have about 850k and up to spend you can look thre too it is absoultely beautiful Ive sold alot in Colts Neck really good schools...Cream Ridge homes there are about 500k up and that depending on what kind of home your looking for, remember in all these areas YOU can fin less expensive housing Im just giving you what the Average is here according to My MLS....Cream Ridge goes to Allentown Schools, You need to check them out at www.greatschools.net.....Robbinsville (broken link) is nice also depends on where in Robbinsville you want to live....for commuting purposes some of these areas arent going to help...they arent that close to NYC..and you are looking at at least min of 1.5 hours......Monmouth Juct you can commute from WEst windsor you can get a train, Plainsboro you can also get a train, Monroe is horrible to commute from to NYC....And I speak for the other towns, I hope this helps somewhat, however you are all over the map and eventuanlly need to narrow down your search...You need to figure out what is important, what you need and what you dont need, and make a list.....

Staci
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Old 02-01-2007, 10:33 AM
 
38 posts, read 127,386 times
Reputation: 11
Default NJ Towns to Move to?

Thanx NJMOMof2, actually i'm not too concerned w/ getting to NYC as the commute is to the west. Work is in Princeton. WOW! those areas in Monmouth & Ocean county sound expensive. I thought if I were getting away from Princeton it would be a little cheaper. Someone mentioned Middlesex county. What do you think?

Frankly, I'm a little confused w/ the townships/town names. I'm so depressed that we have to move and to have to start all over again (eg. finding a decent house, school, friends, recreation activities for the kids). It's all so overwhelming.

Of course, the main criteria as always is
1. excellent school for my kids
2. commutable to Princeton
3. decent house for $500K
4. safe & family friendly neighborhood

Thanx.
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Old 02-01-2007, 10:44 AM
 
Location: Jersey Shore
1,574 posts, read 4,471,843 times
Reputation: 1014
Cranbury and Plainsboro are great towns with excellent schools. They are expensive as well, though. Cranbury does have a nice little downtown and older neighborhoods with historic homes. Perhaps there might be something there in your range? I'm sure Staci could check that for you.

If you're looking at Monroe, maybe you should consider Spotswood, as well. It's a nice little town, pretty tight community with older, more affordable homes. I have a nephew who goes to school there, they seem to be happy with the school system (they moved from Monroe).
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Old 02-01-2007, 12:23 PM
 
Location: Tampa Bay Area Florida
7,937 posts, read 18,523,047 times
Reputation: 2004
Sparkle,

also remember property taxes...very expensive depending on where you live...West Windsor taxes are high as well...ok commuting to Princeton..Plainsboro is nice oh Mercer County..lol..is princeton area...u can do Twin Rivers...Monroe has good school system however expensive homes, 500k you wont get very much...I hate to say it but 500k doesnt buy alot here these days, and if you find something less expensive the taxes will still between 5500 and 10k depending on where u live....for 500 max you can buy a small colonial that is older about 20-30 yrs old...I would be happy to assist you...
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