Yes, Somerset County communities, including Warren, Watchung, Basking Ridge - are good values by NJ standards. Well regarded schools, proximity to highways, and in the case of Basking Ridge on the train line. These will be on the outside of your mileage parameter, but we are popular among commuters - our proximity to 78 and 287 is part of the reason why. Many/most of the buyers in our communities start out as you have, looking in eastern communities, and then frustrated by what their money will and won't buy, move a little west to get more for their money, lower taxes, and still good schools.
That's how my husband and I ended up here. He still commutes everyday to the city.
Happy to help you explore this area - if you'd like to discuss further, email email@example.com or call 908-337-0943.
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