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Old 03-06-2007, 11:48 AM
 
13 posts, read 46,839 times
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My husband's company, etc...to relocate us to NJ. His office is located in East Windsor. If anyone is familiar with Westville, New Haven, CT it is what we are looking for. We have 5 & 3yo and want a nice neighborhood walking distance to school and shops. Our price range for a home isn't too high starting out... under $300,000. HELP! We are so overwhelmed and want a nice community and good schools for our children. I come from a very close Italian family and wouldn't mind an Italian influenced area. Any advice would be great, thank you all in advance.
Krista
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Old 03-06-2007, 03:28 PM
 
Location: Missouri
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Okay...
The good news: there are plenty of Italians in New Jersey in general, and the schools in New Jersey, in general, are good to very good.
The bad news: <$300k is not going to get you much, and it certainly won't get you a house in a walkable neighborhood that is nice, safe, with good schools, anywhere I know of near East Windsor.
I think your choices are, get a condo/townhome in a walkable neighborhood with good schools, or get a house in a non-walkable neighborhood with average schools. Plainsboro and Robbinsville both have very good school districts...you could get a 2 bedroom, maybe a 3 bedroom condo, with 1.5 - 2 baths, for under $300k. Both areas have strong, steady home appreciation values and are experiencing population growth, so ideally you would be able to upgrade before the kids got too big. Foxmoor in Robbinsville (zip code 08891 if you are searching online) has some 2 bedroom condos and is a walkable community, but the sections of Foxmoor that will have condos in your price range are mainly in the back side of the community, so it would be a bit of a walk to get to the schools and the grocery store located in the development (maybe up to a mile).
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Old 03-06-2007, 04:09 PM
 
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Default Moving to Jersey

Wow, anything more positive than that? My husband is willing to drive a little maybe 40 minutes tops to work. Does that open up my options a bit?
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Old 03-06-2007, 04:55 PM
 
Location: New Jersey
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If your husband is willing to commute about an hour, your options could open so much more...especially in that price range. Plus the taxes here are high!
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Old 03-06-2007, 05:05 PM
 
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If you want to be semi-close to East Windsor, you could try Spotswood. There's some housing in your price range, the schools are pretty good, and its a nice working-class community.

Unfortunately, $300k in central NJ doesn't go too far- especially if you need/want good schools. If you're willing to take the 40-minute commute, you could look into Woodbridge or Edison and likely find some small capes that fit within your price range.

Are you willing to do a little renovation work to tailor the house to your needs, or are you looking for it to be "like new" and ready to go?

Bob
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Old 03-06-2007, 05:14 PM
 
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Not afraid of a little hard work at all. We love old houses also. Because of the kids obviously schools and neighborhood is our priority. We are fine getting the "run down" house in the neighborhood and will gladly do the work to turn it around.
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Old 03-06-2007, 05:52 PM
 
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There's some areas in Old Bridge, Woodbridge, South Edison, Parlin, Sayreville and a few other towns that have good schools (not top in the state or anything, but good and safe), and should have plenty of housing in your price range.

The willingness to do some work on the home definitely helps- it seems like more and more young people don't know which end of a screwdriver to hold (despite the best intentions of DIY TV....lol), and want a brand new home for $300k. Unfortunately, that ain't happnin' here in NJ.

Bob
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Old 03-07-2007, 11:20 AM
 
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You may want to consider Roosevelt. NJ Magazine rated it one of the best towns in NJ, AND you can find a house there for 300K. It also borders East Windsor. The upside: It's kind of artsy and pretty. The downside: Small town, with only one restaurant (hey, but it's pizza!).
Downtown Hightstown has historic and affordable houses, and is surrounded by East Windsor.
A bit further west, Hamilton Township is also more affordable and arguably has the best pizza in NJ (Delorenzo's).
Also going south is good for house prices, like Jackson township and Howell Township.
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Old 05-06-2007, 10:08 AM
 
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I moved to Hightstown approx 2 years ago. For the most part I'm very happy. There are a few strange characters, but for the most part it's a cute little town. If you like old homes you'll love Hightstown. You may luck out with a fixer upper in your price range, but beware.. the property taxes are terribly high.

Commuting is very good with the Turnpike w/in one mile, but don't count on getting a parking space in the Princeton Junction train station. I don't have kids but I hear the school system is good, and if you have an extra 20k per year lying around the Peddie School is a private school right in the middle of town.

A note of caution.. one of the other users mentioned Hamilton. Yes, parts of Hamilton are very nice, like Hamilton Square, but others are horrendous. I was looking in Hamilton before buying here and I kept finding nice properties online that turned out to be in terrible neighborhoods, or within blocks of terrible neighborhoods. All I can say is be careful. The crime rate in certain sections of town is very high. Don't forget that Hamilton is a suburb of Trenton, which boasts one of the highest crime rates in the country.

I consider myself very lucky to have found something in Hightstown. It's a safe town within a safe town (Hightstown is often referred to as the 'donut hole' of East Windsor), that is surrounded by safe towns. I am a 30 something female living by myself and I don't worry.

Another thing that I want to mention.. I've been reading over the posts on this site and noticed comments (ie. "look around") which I believe may refer to the latino population. I don't think that's fair. It's been my experience that Hightstown's latino population are a (very very) hard working, quiet, family oriented group of people. Who can ask for more in a neighbor, right?
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Old 05-06-2007, 09:19 PM
sj3
 
118 posts, read 609,153 times
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Ummm...kids, east windsor schools. Do a search. I think I would look elsewhere.
Also roosevelt isn't what I would call a desireable town.
I would choose Hamilton over East Windsor because there are plenty of nicer areas. Steinart school is the HS area you want to be in.
Hightstown has some real shady areas too.
I would consider Robbinsville as an option. The price point is hard no matter where you want to go.
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