Best Affordable Places to Live in New Jersey in 2023

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    (Last Updated – 10/2023)

    New Jersey is a dynamic and diverse state nestled in the heart of the Mid-Atlantic United States. Renowned for its shoreline along the ocean, its vibrant communities large and small, and its beautiful countryside, this state of over nine million residents offers an array of lifestyles to suit different tastes. Now wonder local hero Bruce Springsteen often sings about life in his beloved New Jersey.

    One of New Jersey’s standout features is its strategic location. Situated near major metropolitan hubs like New York City and Philadelphia, it provides easy access to an array of cultural, economic, and entertainment opportunities. It’s no wonder that the state is a magnet for many professionals seeking a thriving job market, particularly in industries such as finance, pharmaceuticals, technology, and advanced manufacturing.

    However, life in New Jersey can get expensive, with a higher cost of living than the average in the U.S. This guide to the best affordable places to live in New Jersey can help you zero in on places that can suit your wish list of features as well as your budget.

    Best Places to Live in New Jersey

    Whether you’re dreaming of living in a dynamic city, a quiet farming town, a haven by the beach, or a suburb that revolves around family life, New Jersey probably has at least a few affordable places that will deliver. For those who want to be close to New York City and have all kinds of restaurant and entertainment options, Hoboken, Jersey City, and Edgewater can be best bets.

    For those raising a family, towns like Chester, and Mountainside may be just right. Retirees often enjoy Paramus and Bedminster, and those who crave beach life will find over 100 miles of shoreline waiting.

    In general, New Jersey can be a fairly pricey place to live. The cost of living is 1.17 times more than the average in the United States, so keep that in mind as you hunt for a new spot to call home.

    Read on for some of the best affordable places to live in New Jersey for different life stages.

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    Affordable

    Best Affordable Places to Live in New Jersey

    First, a quick caveat: Adjacent to expensive areas like New York City and Philadelphia, New Jersey can be a costly place to live. In terms of cost of living by state, it does come in above the national norm. But that said, New Jersey has numerous locations where budget-conscious individuals and families can settle.

    That’s why this list is here to share some of the top affordable places in New Jersey.

    1. Pennsauken Township

    Pennsauken Township, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/peeterv

    With its modest housing prices, diverse population, and access to employment, Pennsauken Township tops this list of most affordable places to live in New Jersey. Its transit center allows residents to navigate the surrounding areas with ease. In addition, they can enjoy boating in Cooper River Lake, golfing at the Pennsauken Country Club, and touring the Griffith Morgan House historical museum.

    Population: 37,139

    Median Household Income: $72,802

    Cost of Living: 112% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $1,600

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 2.30

    Average Property Tax: 2.42%

    Housing Affordability: Pennsauken’s median rental price has decreased by $300 since last year, signaling continuing affordability in this cool housing market. Likewise, a home-to-price income ratio of 2.30 puts Pennsauken in first place for affordable homeownership in New Jersey. Ready to hit the open houses? Completing the mortgage preapproval process can help you get on the path to buying a home.

    2. Gloucester Township

    Gloucester Township, New Jersey

    Photo credit: Flickr/J. Stephen Conn , Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0
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    Gloucester Township is another of the top affordable places to live in New Jersey. Although it’s home to almost 70,000 people, it’s full of tight-knit neighborhoods with moderately-priced housing. The city focuses on community support and businesses to help its residents thrive, and access to the Black Horse Turnpike and well-preserved municipal roads make transportation a snap. In fact, Philadelphia is just 10 minutes away, though there’s plenty to do in Gloucester Township, from visiting Royal Mile Coffee Roasters to spending an afternoon in Proprietors Park.

    Population: 65,989

    Median Household Income: $88,699

    Cost of Living: 114% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,300

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 2.34

    Average Property Tax: 3.86

    Housing Affordability: Monthly median housing costs are $2,086 for homeownership and have spiked to $3,300 for renting. The costs to own are cheaper than surrounding areas, providing affordable suburban living close to major cities along the East Coast. (If you’re planning on buying a home, it can be wise to read up on tips about qualifying for a mortgage first.) Rentals are scarce, and the price tag has risen $3,000-plus year over year.

    3. Winslow Township

    Sandwiched between two gorgeous nature preserves is Winslow Township, which also offers more than just wallet-friendly housing. There’s paintball, wineries, and the Pinelands Golf Club to keep you occupied. A diverse population and a range of outdoor fun makes the city an enjoyable place to live without breaking the bank.

    Population: 39,904

    Median Household Income: $81,122

    Cost of Living: 110% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $1,800

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 2.52

    Average Property Tax: 3.70%

    Housing Affordability: Renting has risen just $50 in the last year in Winslow Township, indicating a steady market. In terms of purchasing a property, the township’s budget-friendly home price-to-income ratio can be attractive to first-time homebuyers and seasoned homebuyers alike.

    4. Trenton

    Trenton, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/halbergman

    From museums to an outdoor sculpture park and fine dining, Trenton, the state capital, offers an endless amount to do. The city is bursting with culture and amenities while maintaining a realistic price tag. Its median home value is about $100,000 cheaper than the other cities on this list. And Trenton is just across the Delaware River from Philadelphia, making for an easy commute for those who work there.

    Population: 89,661

    Median Household Income: $39,718

    Cost of Living: 111% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $1,700

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 2.43

    Average Property Tax: 2.78%

    Housing Affordability: Trenton’s median rental cost has risen by $170 over the last year, but there is currently a good supply of properties. In addition, although homeownership can cost less than $1,483 per month, local wages are about half the average of the other cities on the list. Nevertheless, Trenton remains one of the top five most affordable places to live in New Jersey.

    Recommended: Guide to Mortgage Preapproval vs Prequalification

    Best Places to Live in New Jersey for Families

    New Jersey features numerous cities with amenities for families, including award-winning schools, outdoor areas, and high rates of homeownership. Here are some of the best places to live in New Jersey for families.

    1. Chester

    Chester, New Jersey

    Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons/Zeete , Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International

    Residents say that the small town of Chester can be a terrific spot to raise a family. They appreciate the local school system, the beautiful landscape, and the array of fresh-air options for kids, such as pick-your-own farms and Black River County Park with its butterfly garden. Ice cream and candy shops downtown add to the family-friendly feel.

    Population: 1,591

    Median Household Income: $126,806

    Cost of Living: 143% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $2,495

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 3.92

    Average Property Tax: 2.16%

    Housing Affordability: While most Chester residents own their own homes, some do rent, and rental prices have been steady year over year. However, there aren’t enough properties to meet demand, so the market is considered hot.

    In terms of owning a property, the home price-to-income ratio is moderate, but the property taxes can be considerable. If you’re ready to shop for a home in Chester or elsewhere, it’s wise to review different types of mortgages to find the best match.

    2. Edgewater

    Edgewater, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/Robi_J

    For those who want more of an urban setting, Edgewater can be a good place to raise a family in New Jersey. Locals give the local schools a thumbs-up and enjoy the easy access to New York City, which is right across the Hudson River (which means the town has jaw-dropping views and short commuting times). There’s plenty to keep little ones occupied locally, too, such as sports and arts classes and storytime sessions.

    Population: 14,234

    Median Household Income: $126,483

    Cost of Living: 159% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,646

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 5.16

    Average Property Tax: 2.16%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Edgewater has risen $168 year over year, and it’s 78% higher than the national figure. However, the median household income is considerably elevated as well. The rental market is described as cool. In terms of buying a home, Edgewater’s housing values are higher than the national norm, but the home price-to-income ratio, at 5.16, may be affordable for families.

    3. Rockaway Township

    Rockaway Township, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/Alex Potemkin

    Chock full of lakes, parks, and nature preserves, Rockaway Township is a quiet suburb. Residents often mention the school system as an asset that makes the town a good place for families. Tucked further inland, Rockaway Township requires a longer commute to New York City than some other suburbs. Family households make up 69.31% of its residents, and 31.57% of households have children.

    Population: 26,036

    Median Household Income: $131,313

    Cost of Living: 130% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,096

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 2.85

    Average Property Tax: 2.16%

    Housing Affordability: Median rental prices in Rockaway, New Jersey, have increased by $1,371 since last year, reflecting a market with growing demand. However, most residents own their homes, which has a median cost of $2,683 per month. When combined with the strong median household income of $131,313, these figures indicate a relatively affordable cost of living.

    4. Toms River

    Toms River, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/Lisa McCabe

    Another top spot to raise a family in New Jersey is Toms River. It’s a large suburban enclave along the coast of New Jersey, named for the river that serves as one of its borders. Residents praise this outdoorsy location with plenty of trails to hike and bike, the school system, and the proximity, come summer, to the beach and its boardwalks. Whether your idea of a fun Friday night is having a great meal in a local restaurant, watching a high-school ball game, or both, you’ll probably enjoy life in Toms River. The average age of residents is 42.7, and 80% of the population own their own homes.

    Population: 98,326

    Median Household Income: $84,928

    Cost of Living: 115% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,000

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 4.71

    Average Property Tax: 2.09%

    Housing Affordability: Toms River’s median rental price is 47% above the national figure, but the market is considered to be cool, with prices rising just $50 year over year. Homeownership can be more affordable, however, due to the home price-to-income ratio and the relatively low property taxes. Purchasing a property likely wouldn’t necessitate a jumbo mortgage loan for most homebuyers.

    5. Mountainside

    Mountainside, New Jersey

    Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons/Tomwsulcer , Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal

    Located about 45 minutes from New York City, Mountainside is a small town that many families find both affordable and welcoming. They praise the school system and outdoor spaces, like the Trailside Nature and Science Center and Watchung Reservation. There are also many options in terms of shopping and dining out, and the relatively short commute to New York City is another benefit.

    Population: 6,957

    Median Household Income: $133,365

    Cost of Living: 129.5% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,950

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 4.87

    Average Property Tax: 2.03%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Mountainside has increased by $350 since last year. However, rental demand remains lower than the national average, suggesting stability and possible reductions in pricing for the future. Home prices are a bit below the usual standard U.S. home price-to-income ratio of five, but the property taxes, as in many New Jersey areas, are relatively high.

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    Best Places to Live in New Jersey for Young Adults

    Numerous towns in New Jersey feature the diversity, economic opportunity, and proximity to New York City that makes living in the area exciting and rewarding. Here are the top five places to live in New Jersey for young adults:

    1. Hoboken

    Hoboken, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/Thomas Kloc

    Hoboken sits across the Hudson River from Manhattan and is home to many young professionals, college students, and budding creatives. The city’s median age is 30, and 45% of its residents are between ages 18 and 34. Nightlife is vibrant, with plenty of bars, restaurants, and coffee shops. Residents aged 25 and under earn a median salary of $100,150.

    Population: 57,703

    Median Household Income: $160,890

    Cost of Living: 139.5% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,800

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 4.83

    Average Property Tax: 2.17%

    Housing Affordability: Hoboken’s median rental cost has increased by $200 since last year. Rental demand is rising, driving up prices as supply decreases. The median monthly homeownership cost is $3,937, so housing can be costly for both renters and buyers, though the higher median household income helps offset this.

    2. Jersey City

    Jersey City, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/OlegAlbinsky

    Here’s another best place to live in New Jersey for singles: Jersey City. It has an enviably short commute to New York City. In some cases, a bus or train can whisk you there in 20 minutes or less, and ferry service is an option too. Plus, businesses are increasingly calling Jersey City home, making for an even easier trip to the office. These features, plus beautiful parks, are just a few perks that make Jersey City a desirable place for young professionals. Its diverse, young population can mean there’s always a new experience around the corner. In terms of economic opportunities, residents under 25 earn a median salary of $61,144. Residents between the ages of 18 and 34 account for 31% of the city’s population.

    Population: 286,670

    Median Household Income: $81,390

    Cost of Living: 139.5% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $2,789

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 5.37

    Average Property Tax: 2.17%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Jersey City has ticked up by $289 in the last year. The rental market is warming up, so demand and pricing may jump in the future. Similarly, the median monthly homeownership cost is $2,895, so housing in Jersey City is among the more expensive options compared to the other cities on this list.

    3. Highland Park

    Highland Park, New Jersey

    Photo credit: Flickr/Vik Nanda , Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

    Highland Park is conveniently located about an hour away from both New York City and Philadelphia, but young professionals might find it hard to tear themselves away from the town. It offers an engaging and affordable mix of activities, from diverse restaurants to sample to farmer’s market to visit to spacious parks to explore. Thirty percent of its population is aged 18-34, and those under 25 make a median salary $50,417.

    Population: 14,988

    Median Household Income: $85,652

    Cost of Living: 124.7% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $2,183

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 4.40

    Average Property Tax: 2.52%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental cost has risen by $143 over the last year. As with many other areas popular with young professionals, the rental market is gradually experiencing more demand. However, homeownership in Highland Park costs a median of $2,919 per month, and the home price-to-income ratio is lower than the previous cities on this list for young adults.

    4. Secaucus

    Secaucus, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/Robi_J

    Secaucus is another of the best affordable places for young professionals in New Jersey. It’s a bustling suburb just a 15-minute train ride from New York City. In terms of budget-friendliness, Secaucus boasts the lowest property taxes in the county and ample outdoor recreation opportunities. The town is an economic powerhouse, with residents under 25 making a median salary $148,375. 23% of the population is between the ages of 18 and 34.

    Population: 21,108

    Median Household Income: $125,246

    Cost of Living: 139.5% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $2,900

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 3.92

    Average Property Tax: 2.17%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Secaucus has increased by $100 from last year, and the median monthly homeownership cost is $2,884. The home price-to-income ratio is among the more affordable on this list for young adults. In addition, the rental market is deemed cool, so this could be a good location whether you are a prospective first-time homebuyer or a renter. For those who are thinking of purchasing, it can be a good move to check out programs for first-time homebuyers in New Jersey to help you get the most affordable deal.

    5. Edgewater

    Edgewater, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/Agent_Nikita

    Making another appearance on this list is Edgewater. Hugging the banks of the Hudson River, it sits directly across from New York City and offers amazing skyline views. Most residents rent their homes and have a quick commute to the city by car or by bus. Residents may enjoy the urban feel of Edgewater, where there’s plenty to do at the local parks, restaurants, boutiques, bars, and coffee shops.

    Population: 14,234

    Median Household Income: $126,483

    Cost of Living: 141% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,646

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 5.16

    Average Property Tax: 2.16%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Edgewater has risen $168 year over year, and it’s 78% higher than the national figure. However, the median household income is considerably elevated as well. The rental market is described as cool. In terms of buying a home, Edgewater’s housing values are higher than the national norm, but the home price-to-income ratio, at 5.16, may be affordable for young professionals.

    Best Places to Live in New Jersey for Retirees

    New Jersey is packed with retiree-friendly towns. They feature parks, culture, senior services, and high proportions of residents aged 65 and older. Plus, New Jersey doesn’t tax Social Security income, so retirees will keep more of their income by settling in the state.

    1. Mountainside

    Mountainside pops up on this list again, this time as a best place for retirees to live in New Jersey. It’s a small town with 28% of its population aged over 65 years. Opportunities for adventure-seeking retirees include cross-country skiing in Watchung Reservation, accessible train rides to Manhattan, and a selection of high-quality restaurants. Homeownership in Mountainside costs $3,377 monthly, although having a paid-off mortgage lowers this amount to $1,450. On the other hand, the median rental cost is $2,926.

    Population: 6,957

    Median Household Income: $133,365

    Cost of Living: 129.5% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,950

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 4.87

    Average Property Tax: 2.03%

    Housing Affordability: Mountainside’s rental prices have climbed by $350 since last year. However, rental demand remains lower than the national average, suggesting stability and possible reductions in pricing for the future. The 4.87 price-to-income ratio is close to the national average, but retirees will want to be sure they can afford the higher property taxes.

    2. Berkeley Heights

    Berkeley Heights, New Jersey

    Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons/Tomwsulcer , Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal

    Berkeley Heights’ population consists of 18% of residents age 65+. Located on the western side of Watchung Reservation, the town offers outdoor activities, senior programming, and a vibrant retiree community. Owning and renting both cost about $3,400 monthly. However, owning without a mortgage cuts this cost to about $1,500.

    Population: 13,071

    Median Household Income: $177,219

    Cost of Living: 129.5% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,393

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 3.66

    Average Property Tax: 2.03%

    Housing Affordability: Berkeley Heights’ median rental costs have increased by $718 since last year. Overall, market demand remains modest. In addition, although the median homeownership costs are $3,380 with a mortgage and $1,489 without a mortgage, property taxes are at the higher end of the scale. The town’s excellent median income level helps make living more affordable.

    3. Bedminster

    Nestled in the middle of the state, Bedminster is a quiet suburb that may suit many retirees. It features multiple parks, golf courses, and free weekly transportation to a nearby shopping center for seniors. 24% of residents are 65 or older. Although renting has fluctuated lately, homeownership has remained affordable: $2,412 per month with a mortgage, and $1,081 without a mortgage.

    Population: 8,207

    Median Household Income: $118,539

    Cost of Living: 130% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,000

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 3.38

    Average Property Tax: 2.22%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental cost in Bedminster has increased by $400 since last year. Furthermore, the intense demand in the market likely will continue to push up prices. Conversely, homeownership is less expensive, which could be a key factor when picking the best affordable place to retire in New Jersey.

    4. Toms River

    Toms River, New Jersey

    Photo credit: Flickr/Jazz Guy , Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic

    Toms River offers many advantages for retirees: affordable housing, a large suburban community with many amenities (golf, bookstores, restaurants, historical sites), and proximity to the water. The town borders Toms River and is also very close to the famous Jersey shore beaches.

    About 20% of the population is 65 or older, which means there is a mix of households, which some retirees will likely find appealing. One note: Toms River also is home to active lifestyle communities for ages 55 and over.

    Population: 98,326

    Median Household Income: $84,928

    Cost of Living: 115% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,000

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 4.71

    Average Property Tax: 2.09%

    Housing Affordability: About 80% of Toms River residents own their own homes, which are fairly affordable, and, compared to other New Jersey towns, the taxes can be reasonable. Renting, however, is pricier.

    5. Paramus

    Paramus, New Jersey

    Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons/Famartin , Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International

    Need another great place in New Jersey for retirees? Paramus is near several parks and golf courses, so there is plenty of opportunity to be outdoors. While this city is just a short ride away from New York City, it’s a local mecca for shoppers; if you like perusing the aisles, you’ll have your pick of stores. One-fourth of its residents are 65 or older. The median homeownership cost with a mortgage is $3,260, while the median rent is $4,325. The town also has numerous senior living options.

    Population: 26,359

    Median Household Income: $130,446

    Cost of Living: 141% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $4,325

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 4.78

    Average Property Tax: 1.55%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Paramus has ballooned in the last year by $670. In addition, the market is seeing higher demand than the national average. Likewise, homeownership with a mortgage can be expensive, as the home price-to-income ratio is 4.78 and can cost over $3,200 per month.

    Best Places to Live in New Jersey Near the Beach

    The iconic Jersey Shore contains a host of cities, towns, and boroughs on the beach, each offering distinct experiences of life on the Atlantic. Here are the five best places to live in New Jersey near the beach.

    1. Asbury Park

    Asbury Park, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/DenisTangneyJr

    Asbury Park’s beach is lined with attractions (besides the Atlantic Ocean of course), such as mini golf, a splash park, a playground, vibrant murals, and various restaurants. There’s a dynamic music scene, anchored by the famed Stone Pony made famous by Springsteen. The downtown is enjoying a renaissance, with lots of hip eateries and boutiques opening. Median monthly housing costs are $2,136 to own and $2,900 to rent.

    Population: 15,146

    Median Household Income: $54,676

    Cost of Living: 129.1% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $2,900

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 7.00

    Average Property Tax: 2.13%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Asbury Park has increased by $150 since last year. Demand appears to be leveling out for rentals. On the other hand, buying a property can be pricier than the national average in this booming town.

    2. Ocean Grove

    Ocean Grove, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/DenisTangneyJr

    Just a stone’s throw from Asbury Park is the charming, historic town of Ocean Grove, noted for its Victorian architecture. Here are some of the reasons why it can be a welcoming spot for retirees: In addition to beach access and its charming main street, it’s known for its Great Auditorium by the water, an amazing old-fashioned wooden structure that hosts events and can be a great place to hear music.

    Population: 2,962

    Median Household Income: $65,078

    Cost of Living: 129.1% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $2,500

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 7.00

    Average Property Tax: 2.13%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Ocean Grove has stayed steady, and the market is described as cool, though demand can surge as the weather warms up and people look for properties by the sea. On the other hand, the home price-to-income ratio makes becoming a homeowner in Ocean Park somewhat higher than the national figure.

    3. Cape May

    Cape May, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/DenisTangneyJr

    If you’re dreaming of a classic beach town with loads of architectural interest, Cape May could be right for you. It sits on New Jersey’s southernmost point and is known for its beautiful beaches, a whale watching center, the famous open-air Washington Street mall, and a salt marsh safari. The median housing costs in Cape May are $1,963 a month for owning and $2,350 for renting.

    Population: 95,634

    Median Household Income: $76,237

    Cost of Living: 122.7% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $2,350

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 4.18

    Average Property Tax: 1.60%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Cape May has decreased by $650 in the last year. This figure correlates with low rental demand in the city. Likewise, Cape May’s higher median income helps home affordability, making owning near the beach more feasible.

    4. Sea Bright

    Sea Bright, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/Wirestock

    Sea Bright is another possibility if you’re looking for a best place to live by the beach in New Jersey. It’s a small, quiet community that is actually a barrier island between the Atlantic Ocean and the Navesink River. For those craving a tranquil, away-from-it-all place by the water, this could be the right spot; it doesn’t have the boardwalk and hubbub of some other seaside towns.

    Population: 1,532

    Median Household Income: $101,583

    Cost of Living: 129.1% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $3,000

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 7.02

    Average Property Tax: 2.13%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Sea Bright is above the national median, and it has increased by $400 since last year. The market is described as warm, so demand could continue to rise. Owning a home in Sea Bright is also more expensive than the national norm, but for some people, living in this community may make it worthwhile to pay the higher price.

    5. Wildwood

    Wildwood, New Jersey

    Photo credit: iStock/Carl Kaminski

    Last but certainly not least, Wildwood is an affordable town that, come summer, offers a classic Jersey shore experience: roller coasters, resorts, parks, restaurants, and a strip of lovely beach. Off-season, residents can shop, catch a movie, go bowling, visit a local brewery, and dine out. Housing in Wildwood is more affordable than most other beach towns: the median rent is $1,714, and homeownership has a median monthly cost of $2,388.

    Population: 5,157

    Median Household Income: $44,476

    Cost of Living: 122.7% of the U.S. average

    Median Rent Price: $1,714

    Home Price-to-Income Ratio: 5.98

    Average Property Tax: 1.60%

    Housing Affordability: The median rental price in Wildwood has increased by $214 in the last year. Rental prices remain affordable, and low demand may decrease the cost in the future. Conversely, purchasing a home is more costly, with the median home price sitting at almost six times the median salary.


    The Takeaway

    Living in New Jersey offers a unique blend of benefits and a variety of locales, making it a fantastic place to call home. Its prime location on the East Coast provides easy access to major cities like New York and Philadelphia, which has helped establish it as a hub of economic activity. The state boasts a rich tapestry of cultures and landscapes as well.

    Whether you are a young professional who wants to settle in Hoboken, a family that decides to put down roots in Mountainside, or a retiree who dreams of a place by the beach, New Jersey can provide a great home base. If you’re shopping for a property, there are likely to be many options to suit your budget, and the right mortgage can also help.

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    FAQ

    What is the most affordable city in New Jersey?

    Among the most affordable cities in New Jersey is Willingboro, based on median home price-to-income ratio. Willingboro’s home price-to-income ratio is 2.19, and the median salary of $83,323 helps its residents pay for the cost of living.

    Where is the least expensive place to live in New Jersey?

    One of the least expensive places to live in New Jersey is Willingboro. The cost of living in Willingboro is 3% above the national average, which is considered very low for the state of New Jersey.

    Where is the best place to live near New Jersey?

    There are a variety of great places to live in and around New Jersey, depending on your needs and tastes. For instance, some people might like a small, rural town like Chester. Others might like the downtown vibe of Jersey City or Hoboken and the quick commute into Manhattan.


    *SoFi requires Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) for conforming home loans with a loan-to-value (LTV) ratio greater than 80%. As little as 3% down payments are for qualifying first-time homebuyers only. 5% minimum applies to other borrowers. Other loan types may require different fees or insurance (e.g., VA funding fee, FHA Mortgage Insurance Premiums, etc.). Loan requirements may vary depending on your down payment amount, and minimum down payment varies by loan type.

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