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  • Marc Rovner

New Jersey's 10 Best Places To Live In 2020, Ranked

According to Coldwell Banker, if you want to live among the best places in New Jersey, then you should consider moving to Bergen County. Two of the top five spots in their annual Best Places To Live In New Jersey list are held by Bergen communities Wyckoff and Closter.

Here are the top 10 best places to live in New Jersey, as determined by Coldwell Banker:

1. Westfield (Union County)

Union County experienced a large migration from New York City beginning in Spring 2020. Westfield saw a 97.1 percent increase in new listings in August 2020 over 2019, and a 58.3 percent increase in closed sales. The inventory of available homes was down 48.9 percent.

2. Montclair (Essex County)

New listings on the market have increased 280 percent in August over the previous year, while homes sold 44.4 percent faster at 20 days and achieved a median sale price of $975,000, a 29.5 percent increase over 2019, according to the real estate company. "I've never seen it like this before, ever. They're coming in droves. There are lines at open houses and almost every car on the street has a New York license plate," said Montclair agent Jocelyn Russo.

3. Wyckoff (Bergen County)

In August 2020, pending deals in Wyckoff were up an astounding 222 percent over the previous year, according to the company's analysis. There was a 100 percent increase in closed sales over the previous year in September, with under contract properties pushing that momentum into the fall.

4. Manalapan (Monmouth County)

As commuting to New York City becomes less of a concern, the Jersey shore area has seen an influx of New York City buyers. Between August 2019 and August 2020, the average sales price jumped from $425,000 to $525,000 in Manalapan, located 15 miles from New Jersey beaches and 45 miles from New York City.

5. Closter (Bergen County)

According to New Jersey Realtors, housing inventory was down nearly 40 percent in Bergen County in August compared to the previous year. Closter itself experienced a 185.7 percent increase in closed sales.

6. Clinton (Hunterdon County)

Hunterdon County, located more than 50 miles west of New York City, has quickly become a popular destination for home buyers. Clinton, home to the iconic Red Mill, is located just off three major highways with outdoor recreation and a quaint downtown. Homes in the Clintons spent an average 54 days on the market in August compared to 76 a year prior.

7. Madison (Morris County)

West of Manhattan lies suburban Morris County, where local real estate agents are reporting a surge of buyers from New York City. They report that multiple offers are becoming common, as well as cash deals.

8. Sparta (Sussex County)

Real estate agent Denny Kevil has reported an increase in New York City buyers hoping to relocate to the rural Sussex County municipality. Touting 11 private lake communities and the historic Lake Mohawk boardwalk and plaza, Sparta provides resort-like charm just 45 miles from Manhattan, according to the agent.

9. Bridgewater (Somerset County)

The suburban spot in Somerset County is seeing many homes enter the market and sell immediately, according to Coldwell Banker. In August, there was a 40 percent increase in under-contract homes compared to the previous year.

10. Princeton (Mercer County)

Princeton's current influx of buyers are generally from Manhattan, Brooklyn and Jersey City seeking updated or new homes, according to agent Heidi A. Hartmann.

Pending sales in July and August were more than 30 percent over the previous year.

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