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Old 01-24-2019, 08:36 AM
 
8 posts, read 4,561 times
Reputation: 10

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Hi all,

Looking for your ideas/opinions about my situation:

Current:
1. West Orange, NJ homeowner. Annual property taxes $17,000
2. House was built in 1971, hence every year we need to replace/upgrade/fix something (driveway, new roof, replace furnace, etc).
3. Kids ages 6 and 9 go to local elementary school.
4. Wife works from home.
5. I commute to Middle town east every day: drive to Orange train station and park ($40 for a monthly permit), take two NJ Transit trains (change in Newark) to Penn Station, then two subway lines to Grand Central, then walk 7 minutes to office (2nd Av and 44th).
6. Door-to-door commute time in the morning: 1.5 hours. In the afternoon: 1 hour, 10 minutes (express train).


Looking for:
1. To buy an apartment in Westchester or Putnam counties (so I don't have to replace/fix roof, driveway, deck, water issues on backyard, etc).
2. Reduce tax load as much as possible as we'll be sending the kids to private school.
3. Improve commute time, ideally 1 hours 15 minutes door-to-door.
4. We don't really care if the "city feel" is urban or suburban. A mix of the two of them would be nice to have.
5. Diversity is a plus.

Your comments/observations/advice are welcome.
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Old 01-24-2019, 09:23 AM
 
482 posts, read 632,847 times
Reputation: 398
White Plains is probably best bet. Lower taxes given commercial tax base. And bigger condo inventory with walkability.

Surprised your door to door is that long. I guess because you’re taking a non direct train in the morning because the departure time of the direct trains don’t make sense....and getting to 2nd and 44th is pretty tricky. 2 subways or the E...and the E stinks.

Are home improvements that bad? Most homes in West Orange were built 50 years before yours.

I feel your pain. We have a 1920s house in Glen Ridge NJ and our taxes are in the high 20s. Monthly average for tax and home repairs is greater than our mortgage. Actually i could almost guarantee you our taxes alone would outpace our mortgage in less than 10 years.
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Old 01-25-2019, 06:30 AM
 
42 posts, read 36,106 times
Reputation: 33
I agree- White Plains is good choice. Lots of condo options and the White Plains train station to Grand Central is fast and most frequent. According to this it has the most trains to NYC from Westchester- https://suburbs101.com/westchester-m...ains-to-nyc-2/

Otherwise Stamford CT is another option- lots of condos and express trains to midtown too. Port Chester, NY is also another option.
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Old 01-25-2019, 08:49 AM
 
820 posts, read 917,807 times
Reputation: 519
Wow, that is a surprisingly long commute given the distance of West Orange to the city. Check out Stamford CT: low taxes, can get more for your money than White Plains, great private school options nearby, diversity, tons of apartment/condo options, beach access, easy commute into Grand Central, has both urban and suburban areas.
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