Your request is quite feasible, since you are looking for a top ranked school district, property taxes tend to be higher in those towns. Feel free to send me your email address if I can assist you. I cover the Essex county towns you mentioned above in addition to some Morris county and Union towns.
There are plenty of towns where you can drive or walk to the train and you don't have to buy a short sale
I am short sale certified and would be happy to explain the process to you with no obligation. Short sales are not for everyone.
O can also help you find something on your price range that will meet most of your requirements.
Give me a call at 908-675-0167 or email me at PruMaryNJ@AOL.com and I cam help explain the entire process and find out what's going to work best for you.
Would you consider Bloomfield - right next door to Glen Ridge?
I'd be happy to send you listings.and discuss this more in detail!
Please feel free to reach out to me, and check out my website for some useful links to town and commuting informtation: