In NJ, the prices dropped between 6-8% over the past couple of years and generally speaking are judged to have stabilized now at 2003 levels. NOW is the time to buy! The interest rates are really excellent (below 5%) and you should get preapproved. Give Coldwell Banker Mortgage (888-538-5732) a call to review your financial status and determine a price range based on income, debts, desired monthly payments, potential property taxes depending on where you want to live, etc. They can usually pre-approve you over the phone in 15 minutes or less, and email you the pre-approval.
If you would like to work with me in Bergen County, give me a call (201-262-6600 x144) or let me know where you want to look and I can refer you to an experienced realtor!