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Old 05-27-2008, 06:09 PM
 
7 posts, read 26,672 times
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We are moving to philadelphia and weighing the options for NJ or philly, we like the shorter commute from NJ but have heard about high taxes. Are there other hidden taxes in PA that we should be aware of? or any other advice on picking from the two? We would be working downtown philly. And last we are looking for a family friendly neighborhood with good schools. Thanks.
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Old 05-27-2008, 06:25 PM
 
1,623 posts, read 5,964,834 times
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My totally unscientific research has shown that people in PA generally like living there better than in NJ. Apparently there's lots of complaining on the NJ boards as opposed to most people in PA complaining about Philly. Of course some transplants come to Philly to live and totally hate it and move on, while most locals grow up in the city and live either in the city still or move to the burbs to raise their kids in a safer enviroment with a generally lower cost of living and better public schools.

From what I've gleaned from a post about NJ schools, NJ has great schools in the more affluent areas, including Cherry Hill, but generally poorer schools overall. PA also has great schools in the affluent areas but has more good and great schools in the Philadelphia region than does NJ.

Also, NJ property taxes, income tax and housing prices tend to be higher...at least that's what I read in the post. PA property taxes in the some areas are also out of control, especially in Wallingford-Swarthmore and any area out in the burbs which has new developments - as more residents move in, the need for more schools is causing taxes to go through the roof. In PA, if you work and live in Philly, you will pay a 4 percent or so city wage tax; if you just work, or live, you can shave a point off of that.

I've also read how great the shopping and restaurants in NJ in general outpace PA (PA supposedly has more chain and big box retailers), but honestly I'm wondering just how many of each you need when you have the 5th largest city in the country nearby, and suburbs like the Main Line corridor up Lancaster Ave and towns like Media and West Chester

For family friendly and good schools close to the city, look at Wallingford-Swarthmore, Rose Tree Media, and Havertown.

For more affluent, some say snobby, areas look at Lower Merion, Radnor and Garnet Valley school districts.

Tredyffrin is the best in the Main Line area, then Central Bucks, then Unionville-Chadds Ford

All but Chadds Ford, Garnet Valley area and West Chester (also family friendly) have train service to the city.
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Old 05-28-2008, 04:25 AM
 
Location: NJ
980 posts, read 2,477,324 times
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Commuting to Philly is a breeze from Camden County, NJ because you can take the PATCO highspeedline and zip into Center City, Philly in 15 minutes. PATCO is probably the most reliable and efficient public transportation anywhere. I ride PATCO and SEPTA every day and the PATCO part of my commute is a joy compared to SEPTA.

I currently live in Cherry Hill and work in Philly and think it's a fantastic area except for the property taxes. Great schools, tons of shopping, parks nearby, an easy drive to the shore, and probably the most convenient location in general to everything in the Philly metropolitan area. Oh and the best library I have ever stepped foot into. The property taxes are killing us, though, so we're looking to leave and we will be leaving kicking and screaming, that's how much we love where we live. Having said that, I've been doing a lot of research into the PA towns and many of them also have very high taxes...some as high as what I am paying, so it's not a given that living in PA = lower taxes, although it can be done (I have found some nice towns that do have lower taxes).

I also love Haddon Heights and Haddonfield, although Haddonfield is more on the "rich" side and not as down to earth. It's a gorgeous town, though. Moorestown is also beautiful (also rich - not sure if it's snooty though). Collingswood is a nice, quaint town, although I don't think the schools are as good as the other towns I've mentioned. I think Cherry Hill, Haddonfield and Moorestown have the best schools (from what I have read).
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Old 05-28-2008, 07:19 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia,New Jersey, NYC!
6,967 posts, read 18,556,702 times
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the "good schools" factor alone will probably keep you out of philly.

yeah, i've heard about taxes being on the high side, but jersey is an easy commute into philly. almost too easy.
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Old 05-28-2008, 05:02 PM
 
34 posts, read 256,327 times
Reputation: 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sassygirl18 View Post
Commuting to Philly is a breeze from Camden County, NJ because you can take the PATCO highspeedline and zip into Center City, Philly in 15 minutes. PATCO is probably the most reliable and efficient public transportation anywhere. I ride PATCO and SEPTA every day and the PATCO part of my commute is a joy compared to SEPTA.

I currently live in Cherry Hill and work in Philly and think it's a fantastic area except for the property taxes. Great schools, tons of shopping, parks nearby, an easy drive to the shore, and probably the most convenient location in general to everything in the Philly metropolitan area. Oh and the best library I have ever stepped foot into. The property taxes are killing us, though, so we're looking to leave and we will be leaving kicking and screaming, that's how much we love where we live. Having said that, I've been doing a lot of research into the PA towns and many of them also have very high taxes...some as high as what I am paying, so it's not a given that living in PA = lower taxes, although it can be done (I have found some nice towns that do have lower taxes).

I also love Haddon Heights and Haddonfield, although Haddonfield is more on the "rich" side and not as down to earth. It's a gorgeous town, though. Moorestown is also beautiful (also rich - not sure if it's snooty though). Collingswood is a nice, quaint town, although I don't think the schools are as good as the other towns I've mentioned. I think Cherry Hill, Haddonfield and Moorestown have the best schools (from what I have read).
How is car insurance in NJ compared to PA? I know years ago that the prices were going through the roof ( I was living in NYC and my friends in NJ were complaining all the time). It seems Jersey has allot of hidden costs that creep up on you. I could be wrong. I know that when we were moving to Philly, when we needed temp health insurance while our new company health insurance policy kicked in, we were going to use my sisters address in NJ at first to get the insurance and it was considerably more expensive than my brother-in-laws address in PA ( like $150/month more for the same coverage). I hear about hidden costs from my sister who has lived on both sides of the river...

Last edited by vizanje; 05-28-2008 at 05:03 PM.. Reason: missing a line...
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Old 05-29-2008, 04:02 AM
 
Location: NJ
980 posts, read 2,477,324 times
Reputation: 1860
I am not sure. I know that insurance in Philly is sky high but I don't know how suburban PA locations would compare. I would suggest you call your insurance company and ask them to give you quotes for both locations to compare.
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Old 05-29-2008, 01:07 PM
 
Location: TwilightZone
5,296 posts, read 5,393,049 times
Reputation: 1031
Quote:
Originally Posted by orrmobl View Post
Of course some transplants come to Philly to live and totally hate it and move on, while most locals grow up in the city and live either in the city still or move to the burbs to raise their kids in a safer enviroment with a generally lower cost of living and better public schools.
In a nutshell!
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