These Are The 20 Best Small Towns In New Jersey For 2018


We used science and data to determine which small towns in New Jersey are the best of the best..

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This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Data updated for 2018.

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You’ve seen these lists before: Best places to live in New Jersey, Most Beautiful Downtowns, etc., etc. But all of them focus on major cities and towns in the Garden State and no one pays attention to the little guy.

Well, that’s all about to change as we put together a list of the best small towns in New Jersey based on numbers–not opinions or hearsay.

We’ll dive right into our methodology in the next section; but first, we thought you might just want to know which places in New Jersey ranked the based–you know, based on science.

Before we get to the top 20, here’s a look at the 10 Best Small Towns To Live in New Jersey for 2018:

  1. Plainsboro Center (Homes For Sale)
  2. Brielle (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  3. Pennington (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  4. Allenwood (Homes For Sale)
  5. Barclay (Homes For Sale)
  6. Ho-Ho-Kus (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  7. Robbinsville (Homes For Sale)
  8. Hopewell (Homes For Sale)
  9. Spring Lake Heights (Homes For Sale)
  10. Shrewsbury (Photos | Homes For Sale)

If you live in one of these small towns like Plainsboro Center, chances are, you’re not surprised. After all, you know how great you have it.

But for the rest of you–keep reading and we’ll get to just why these small towns made our list.

For more reading on the Garden State check out:

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How We Determined The Coolest Towns In New Jersey

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using the most recent data from the Census’s 2012-2016 American Community Survey and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is the criteria we used:

  • Population Density (Higher is better)
  • Lowest Unemployment Rates
  • Housing costs (Higher is better. More demand.)
  • Adjusted Median Income (Higher is better)
  • Highly Educated Adults (Higher is better)
  • Insurance Rates (Higher is better)
  • Commute Times (Lower is better)

We looked at places with populations lower than 5,000 people and greater than 1,000, of which, there were a lot – 209 to be exact.

We then ranked each place in each category with scores from 1 to 209, averaged them out, and the lowest scores went to our Best Small Towns in New Jersey. Top of that list — Plainsboro Center.

Keep reading to find out more about our top 20 best small towns in New Jersey.

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1. Plainsboro Center


Population: 2,733
Median Income: $79,484 (87th Best)
Median Home Value: $381,600 (52nd Best)
More on Plainsboro Center: Data| Homes For Sale

2. Brielle

Brielle, NJ

Population: 4,745
Median Income: $127,163 (14th Best)
Median Home Value: $608,000 (22nd Best)
More on Brielle: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

3. Pennington

Pennington, NJ

Source: Public domain

Population: 2,567
Median Income: $117,039 (20th Best)
Median Home Value: $519,100 (29th Best)
More on Pennington: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

4. Allenwood


Population: 1,002
Median Income: $121,067 (18th Best)
Median Home Value: $477,600 (34th Best)
More on Allenwood: Data| Homes For Sale

5. Barclay


Population: 4,340
Median Income: $126,193 (15th Best)
Median Home Value: $323,700 (76th Best)
More on Barclay: Data| Homes For Sale

6. Ho-Ho-Kus

Ho-Ho-Kus, NJ

Population: 4,139
Median Income: $163,988 (4th Best)
Median Home Value: $716,800 (11th Best)
More on Ho-Ho-Kus: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

7. Robbinsville


Population: 3,321
Median Income: $102,807 (37th Best)
Median Home Value: $404,000 (47th Best)
More on Robbinsville: Data| Homes For Sale

8. Hopewell


Population: 1,904
Median Income: $108,750 (29th Best)
Median Home Value: $410,500 (44th Best)
More on Hopewell: Data| Homes For Sale

9. Spring Lake Heights


Population: 4,646
Median Income: $68,750 (122nd Best)
Median Home Value: $470,800 (35th Best)
More on Spring Lake Heights: Data| Homes For Sale

10. Shrewsbury

Shrewsbury, NJ

Source: Public domain

Population: 4,000
Median Income: $116,071 (21st Best)
Median Home Value: $528,500 (27th Best)
More on Shrewsbury: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

11. Navesink


Population: 1,699
Median Income: $104,457 (34th Best)
Median Home Value: $416,700 (43rd Best)
More on Navesink: Data| Homes For Sale

12. Lawrenceville


Population: 4,116
Median Income: $109,574 (26th Best)
Median Home Value: $274,700 (101st Best)
More on Lawrenceville: Data| Homes For Sale

13. Sea Girt


Population: 1,697
Median Income: $113,333 (25th Best)
Median Home Value: $1,227,300 (4th Best)
More on Sea Girt: Data| Homes For Sale

14. Oakhurst


Population: 3,642
Median Income: $99,489 (42nd Best)
Median Home Value: $377,800 (54th Best)
More on Oakhurst: Data| Homes For Sale

15. West Belmar


Population: 2,461
Median Income: $94,392 (53rd Best)
Median Home Value: $350,300 (66th Best)
More on West Belmar: Data| Homes For Sale

16. Essex Fells


Population: 2,164
Median Income: $174,432 (1st Best)
Median Home Value: $832,400 (8th Best)
More on Essex Fells: Data| Homes For Sale

17. Lambertville

Lambertville, NJ

Population: 3,841
Median Income: $89,955 (61st Best)
Median Home Value: $365,200 (60th Best)
More on Lambertville: PhotosData| Homes For Sale

18. Avon-By-The-Sea


Population: 1,846
Median Income: $73,516 (109th Best)
Median Home Value: $899,400 (7th Best)
More on Avon-By-The-Sea: Data| Homes For Sale

19. Cranbury


Population: 2,256
Median Income: $163,958 (5th Best)
Median Home Value: $660,000 (16th Best)
More on Cranbury: Data| Homes For Sale

20. Medford Lakes


Population: 4,081
Median Income: $106,741 (32nd Best)
Median Home Value: $290,400 (89th Best)
More on Medford Lakes: Data| Homes For Sale

Science Can Tackle Any Issue, Even Small Ones

We said it once and we’ll say it again — this list: it’s just science. We did the research, we crunched the numbers, and it turns out, these 20 small towns in New Jersey are the best, in which to live.

And who can argue with that?

If you’re curious, here are the worst small towns in New Jersey:

  1. Port Norris
  2. Egg Harbor City
  3. Elwood

For more New Jersey reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Small Towns In New Jersey

Rank City Population Median Income Median Home Value
1 Plainsboro Center 2,733 $79,484 $381,600
2 Brielle 4,745 $127,163 $608,000
3 Pennington 2,567 $117,039 $519,100
4 Allenwood 1,002 $121,067 $477,600
5 Barclay 4,340 $126,193 $323,700
6 Ho-Ho-Kus 4,139 $163,988 $716,800
7 Robbinsville 3,321 $102,807 $404,000
8 Hopewell 1,904 $108,750 $410,500
9 Spring Lake Heights 4,646 $68,750 $470,800
10 Shrewsbury 4,000 $116,071 $528,500
11 Navesink 1,699 $104,457 $416,700
12 Lawrenceville 4,116 $109,574 $274,700
13 Sea Girt 1,697 $113,333 $1,227,300
14 Oakhurst 3,642 $99,489 $377,800
15 West Belmar 2,461 $94,392 $350,300
16 Essex Fells 2,164 $174,432 $832,400
17 Lambertville 3,841 $89,955 $365,200
18 Avon-By-The-Sea 1,846 $73,516 $899,400
19 Cranbury 2,256 $163,958 $660,000
20 Medford Lakes 4,081 $106,741 $290,400
21 Annandale 1,478 $109,167 $376,200
22 Harrington Park 4,790 $136,313 $600,900
23 Haworth 3,446 $168,371 $644,700
24 Mountain Lakes 4,287 $162,206 $825,100
25 Shark River Hills 3,977 $96,170 $333,500
26 Peapack And Gladstone 2,588 $117,200 $659,700
27 Princeton Junction 2,503 $169,107 $524,500
28 Wenonah 2,163 $102,750 $276,600
29 Monmouth Beach 3,249 $105,391 $663,800
30 Avalon 1,421 $82,768 $1,060,800
31 Bay Head 1,054 $107,656 $1,110,500
32 Kingston 1,383 $68,750 $338,100
33 Alle 1,890 $97,188 $322,600
34 Greenwich 2,492 $128,125 $332,300
35 Middlebush 2,574 $134,902 $436,500
36 Turnersville 3,396 $100,474 $261,900
37 Monmouth Junction 3,199 $123,250 $373,500
38 Longport 1,006 $99,375 $714,200
39 Beckett 4,792 $109,115 $213,600
40 Garwood 4,315 $74,521 $372,500
41 Spring Lake 2,973 $93,185 $1,314,400
42 Riverton 2,736 $93,558 $279,000
43 Ten Mile Run 1,611 $163,150 $606,200
44 Surf City 1,166 $77,083 $658,400
45 Brass Castle 1,608 $96,167 $277,400
46 Cape May 3,529 $54,907 $557,200
47 Long Valley 1,971 $115,547 $397,900
48 Northvale 4,801 $88,438 $448,900
49 Point Pleasant Beach 4,594 $86,899 $557,200
50 Vista Center 2,305 $103,664 $419,300
51 Califon 1,340 $91,771 $349,100
52 Alpine 1,522 $114,545 $2,000,000
53 Beach Haven 1,022 $84,167 $709,400
54 Weston 2,147 $73,326 $409,500
55 Richwood 3,478 $141,406 $351,500
56 Fairview 3,842 $129,231 $396,600
57 Pine Beach 2,211 $92,125 $292,500
58 Saddle River 3,241 $131,845 $1,784,500
59 Franklin Center 4,701 $103,947 $398,300
60 White House Station 2,022 $82,917 $357,700
61 Whittingham 2,607 $56,862 $278,300
62 Ocean Grove 3,069 $58,682 $440,600
63 Riverdale 4,206 $97,045 $330,400
64 Wanamassa 4,591 $98,661 $355,000
65 Waretown 2,000 $71,088 $265,900
66 Six Mile Run 2,655 $125,083 $370,800
67 Lake Telemark 1,103 $85,833 $331,000
68 Kenvil 3,126 $91,750 $296,700
69 Bordentown 3,874 $70,000 $211,200
70 Merchantville 3,771 $75,625 $221,900
71 Island Heights 1,613 $80,139 $405,700
72 Society Hill 3,495 $94,375 $338,500
73 Brownville 2,912 $98,750 $254,400
74 Port Republic 1,004 $89,519 $287,900
75 Clinton 2,679 $108,068 $352,100
76 Wildwood Crest 3,210 $58,897 $424,800
77 South Bound Brook 4,613 $77,713 $246,600
78 Lake Como 1,463 $76,250 $402,700
79 Belford 1,573 $114,563 $354,900
80 Atlantic Highlands 4,318 $91,579 $366,300
81 Wood 3,548 $71,500 $225,400
82 Helmetta 2,314 $75,096 $272,200
83 Chester 1,577 $95,114 $497,100
84 Swedesboro 2,606 $77,868 $200,700
85 Roebling 3,652 $75,385 $161,800
86 Lavallette 2,026 $61,857 $711,700
87 Port Reading 3,896 $77,094 $278,900
88 Oaklyn 4,000 $65,776 $187,300
89 Erma 2,067 $75,515 $286,300
90 Sea Isle City 1,905 $70,333 $640,700
91 Olivet 1,496 $84,867 $236,300
92 Vienna 1,023 $99,728 $272,900
93 Pemberton Heights 2,534 $49,747 $172,300
94 North Beach Haven 2,250 $81,691 $769,900
95 Stanhope 3,457 $84,074 $215,000
96 Englis 2,189 $82,976 $295,200
97 Leonardo 2,472 $71,974 $317,000
98 North Middletown 3,235 $82,361 $232,700
99 Panther Valley 3,457 $85,104 $231,500
100 Laurel Springs 1,950 $84,205 $183,800

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