They also liked Somerset County very much -- for the additional open space that you generally find here. As you travel out 78, Watchung is the point that you get more land for your money. I would suggest Bridgewater here in Somerset County as a community that you should consider - many housing choices in different price ranges - from condos/townhomes to single family homes. Basking Ridge is a great community as well - terrific schools, close to highways, two train stations and bus service, but the prices are higher. Warren Township is just across 78, it too attracts many folks moving from the city, as does neighboring Watchung and Long Hill Township.
Another option is Scotch Plains/Fanwood, neighbor to Westfield, which is a another "hot" urban/surbanban community. While Westfield is pricey, Scotch Plains and Fanwood are more reasonable. Proximity to Westfield is a plus, train station right in Fanwood is great, schools are good, communities are popular and homes are moving well there. There's options to explore here in all price points. This too is an area that is attracting a lot of interest now - I've got a number of buyers - several of which have originated right here on Trulia, that are looking in this area with me now.
I'd be honored to help you explore your options. You can reach me via Trulia or find me online at http://www.feenick.com
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Welcome to Trulia.
Have you considered Morris County. Great quality of life, good schools, lots for kidstuff (I have 2 myself), and affordable. There is also easy train access NY direct to Penn Station.
Please call me or visit my website for a snapshot of the area I love and all your property searches.