When I am with buyers I always make it a point of extending myself with a "hello" and wave when we are out and about - that way they get some sense of how people respond to one another in a community. It reflects well on a community when people respond. If it matters to you, try my "hello and wave" test for yourself when you are looking for homes ;-)
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As a regular person reading these posts, I do not find Tim's response in any way preachy, it was a direct answer and very proper. Some people like living in the burbs, or isolated in total peace and quiet, while some like living in a mixed community with a little life. Linden is kinda both, with good schools and decent people, great Polish delis and small shops, etc. You just have to go and see if it suits you.... more
If it's crime you're concerned about - http://www.neighborhoodscout.com/nj/crime/ and http://www.njsp.org/info/stats.html are both places to find statistics about a neighborhood.
If you want to get a sense of how the neighborhood feels - is it quiet or loud, friendly or not - then you need to spend some time in the neighborhood. Go to the local events, shop in the stores, eat in their restaurants. That will help you decide if the neighborhood is right for you! Good luck!... more