Understanding Real Estate In New Jersey
Finding a home is hard. It’s harder in New Jersey. High property taxes, 2 large metro areas separating the state and a million and one municipalities complicate everything. So when I started going through the process of buying a home. I started sifting through the data to find the best place to live. I thought others might enjoy my findings, and I started publishing them online. Eventually I put a couple of maps on Medium, and everyone seemed to really enjoy them. So now I’ve made even more maps, made them more interactive and aggregated a couple of (sponsored) tools to make the ultimate guide to help you find your new home in New Jersey.
Should You Rent Or Buy?
Probably the first thing you should ask yourself. At least it’s the first thing I asked 2 years ago when I first decided to rent. There are a couple factors at play and you can approach it two ways. If you’re not really sure of the details, you can check by zip code to see the general rent to buy ratio. But if you know the market and know what you’re looking for, you can enter your data into the second tool to see which makes more financial sense.
By Zip Code
You Know Exactly What Your Budget is for Both
Full disclosure: If you click on “Find Your Rates” you will be taken to LendingTree.com via affiliate link. If you want to check out mortgage rates, without being put in contact with lenders, scroll down to the mortgage calculator below. If you do click on the link and follow through the process, we will get a couple of dollars thrown our way. We appreciate your support and wish you the best of luck on your home buying journey.
Property taxes in NJ are out of control. So I decided to devote an entire section so you can really get a grasp of what’s going on.
Effective Property Tax Rate
Property Tax Bill ($)
Compare By Town
This is actually the first tool I made to compare taxes by town. It doesn’t include every town, but it does include most of them. Search for your town to see how it compares in the state and it’s general trend over the past 2 years.
Cost of Owning a Home
Probably the most important factor. Where can you afford to live. We crunch all the expenses involved in a mortgage, to help you decide the best place to live. If you want an even more comprehensive, interactive, and national level guide click here to see our buying guide.
The median household income in a county, subtracted by the median cost of mortgage, including interest and taxes. This is how much the median household has left over after buying their home.
Share of Income Going Toward Mortgage
Where can YOU afford to Live?
Enter your household income to see what you can afford.
Mortgages can be difficult to estimate. Just because you know your monthly payment, you might not know how much it will really cost you. So we built a PITI mortgage calculator to help you out. We also made a early mortgage payoff calculator to help you save some money.
Apartment Rental Guide
Maybe buying isn’t for you right now. That’s fine. We got you covered. Check out the rent prices by county and zip code by clicking through the map below.
Median Rent Price By Income
What To do While You Rent: SAVE!
Commute Time to New York (Beta)
This is the beta version of my next tool. But it’s so in demand for New Jersey, I decided to release it early. This is a map of every stop in the NJ Transit Bus System, that goes to Port Authority. It shows how long it takes and where it’s located. So if you’re looking to commute to New York, use this as a guide. And if you have any ideas for what I could add, please let me know now by clicking here.
Property Tax Data: The 2010-2014 American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, NAHB estimates
Home Value Data: Zillow Research