Ryan, Home Buyer in Franklin Park, NJ

What are the best commuter towns to currently buy in NJ?

Asked by Ryan, Franklin Park, NJ Thu Mar 12, 2009

I currently live in an apartment in Franklin Park, NJ (right off of Rt 27), and commute to the WTC area of NYC (I am currently taking NJ transit to the Path at Newark). I am looking at buying a townhouse, given the current market conditions but wanted to hear other people's thoughts regarding the best commuter town. One downside is that my girlfriend commutes to Whitehouse station. Thanks for your ideas and thoughts!

Help the community by answering this question:


Hi Ryan,

Although I would like to add some viable input here, I am pretty certain that Middlesex County would be out of the loop.. especially if your girlfriend has to commute to Whitehouse Station.

I would think this would best be answered by Jeanne Feenick, who posted below. Jeanne's area may best be suited for your needs and I heard she is a pretty good Realtor to boot.

Good Luck.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 17, 2009
Hi Ryan, add Basking Ridge to the list that Don provided, it is just one stop west. Much will depend on what you are looking for in terms of style of living and price range. Given your girlfriend's commute, I think the communities of Basking Ridge, Gillette and Stirling (collectively Long Hill Township), Berkeley Heights and New Providence are reasonable "mid points". Further west still are a couple more Bridgewater and Bedminster.

I'd be happy to be more specific on what is available - you can reach me through Trulia or find me online at http://www.feenick.com

Jeannie Feenick
Search and connect at http://www.feenick.com
Web Reference: http://www.feenick.com
1 vote Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 12, 2009
Hi Ryan,

If you move a little south on 27 you can pick up the train at Princeton Junction and your girlfirend could take 518 to 206 - this opens South Brunswick, Parts of Frankin which everyone thinks is Princeton, and Princeton. There's plenty available in your price range, and if you're a first time homebuyer you may qualify for some money back!

Mary Brosius
732-829-8222 - Cell
Kuker and Kessler Real Estate
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Dec 12, 2009
Hi Ryan,
If you buy a townhome in Bridgewater area then it is very close to Whitehouse Stn., so your girlfriend would have very short commute. You can take a train from Bridgewater (Raritan Valley line), go to Newark and change to path to WTC. If you want a shorter commute for yourself, then have you considered Jersey City? Your commute will be very short and your girl friend will have about 45 mts./1hr. drive to Whitehouse Stn.

Let me know which location is better and I can send you information on homes that are currently in the market. Any questions, feel free to call me at my cell 908-400-6484.

Neera Sharma
908-400-6484 cell
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 21, 2009
Thank you everyone for your response. To respond to some of your queries:

House Specifics:

Price point: 500K and under
Bedrooms: At least 2
Bathrooms: At least 2
Would prefer to also have a Loft and/or basement (basement does not need to be finished, as I can do this at a later date, but would need to be an actual usable basement)

Town Specifics:

Any type (urban, semi-urban, rural)

Commute specifics:

I work downtown NY (next to the WTC site), so prefer to be on a train line that has easy acces to the PATH (as this saves me 25 or so minutes commute wise. My Girlfriend works in Whitehouse Station, but we would liek to try to keep her commute at an hour or less.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 21, 2009
Consider Morris County. The Dover train line ecompasses Denville, Mt Tabor, Morris Plains, Morristown, Madison and goes directly to Penn Station. Plenty of affordable townhouse communities. Visit:
http://www.prudentialnewjersey.com/jeff.halpern for a list of all the townhouse communities in Central Morris County.
By all major highways for easy commute to Whitehuse Station and just good clean living.
Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Mar 17, 2009
Hah! We lived in Franklin Park, then moved to Whitehouse Station ...

Lots of towns are "good for commuting". The best of course are Hoboken and Jersey City. Big discount on them now - so they should recover well in a few years. And she can just drive West away from traffic on 78. Not much in WS - she's at Merck?

So, if you like a more suburban life, just explore the towns along 78 going West and you'll find what you want. Bridgewater is perhaps as far as you'd want to go - and they have free parking at their station for you (well they definitely did 2 years ago).
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 16, 2009
I would also like to give you ideas, but I didn't see a price point or any specifics. Essex county taxes tend to be on the higher side. Anything on the train line tends to hold it's value, so the towns will be pricier. Anything with higher rated school systems also tend to hold their value. If you give us some more specifics (price [price is a big factor], bedrooms, baths, amenities, town type [downtown area, suburban, rural]), we can try and help narrow it a little more for you. Other locations to consider as in between points (that weren't mentioned): Madison, Chatham, Convent Station, Morristown. They are all on the train line to NYC, and would be central to both you and your girlfriend's commute to Whitehouse station. And again, depending on price, there are a lot of new construction projects in the Morristown area.

If you have any other questions, or want to provide more information, we can try and help narrow it further for you. Good luck!
Lisa Tempesta, Broker-Salesperson
Realtor® -Associate
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage / 2200 Rt. 10 West, Parsippany, NJ 07054
(973) 267-3030 x 129 / (973) 267-4161 fax / (973) 668-6322 cell
skype id lisa.tempesta / text 9736686322
connect with me on linkedin.com / plaxo.com / facebook.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 16, 2009
You can include the towns of Berkeley Heights, New Providence, Gillette, Millington as good commuter towns that give you more house for your money than Millburn. They also are closer to Whitehouse Station so your girlfriend will have a short (20-25 minutes) commute. I service all the areas mentioned so if you need more information please contact me at my website.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 12, 2009
Glad you asked. You will find great buys on the midtown direct line. These towns include: South Orange, Maplewood, Millburn, & Summit. If you need to consider schools Millburn schools were rated number ONE in New Jersey and you will see that reflected in their home prices. That is not to say that any of the other towns have mediocre school systems. They just aren't number one.

There are some great buys in the other towns along the train line. South Orange and Montclair have townhouses near the train stations in these communities and they offer a villagy/artsy feel to their downtown. Other towns may offer better proximity to big-box shopping or have extensive programs for youth.

Each town has its own personality and highlights. I'd be glad to discuss them with you at your leisure and help you narrow your search. Please call me!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 12, 2009
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