NEW YORK (MainStreet) New Jersey represents more than 30% of the top 25 cities for renters to raise a family, according to a new survey.
"All of the New Jersey cities on our list have crime scores well below the national average and a high median household income," said Niccole Schreck, consumer insights and marketing manager with Rent.com. "Many of the New Jersey cities have expansive parks, top-ranked school systems and even historical landmarks, which makes New Jersey a great place for families to live."
Livingston, New Jersey ranked first followed by Ladera Ranch, Calif. in second place.
"One obvious difference between our leading states on each coast is the climate," Schreck told MainStreet. "There are lots of choices for families whether it's the change of seasons or the relative warmth of the west coast. California cities tend to be more populated with a higher quantity of rental dwellings."
The top cities were selected based on low crime rates, high school scores, high percentage of family households and high rental inventory.
"The home is often a family's single most valuable and visible economic asset and the housing in a community is a very reliable gauge of its prosperity," said Louise Keely, chief research officer at The Demand Institute. "Drive through any American town, city or village and you can readily judge how well the community is faring by the types of property, their size and condition."
With 50% of American communities struggling to find their way forward after the Great Recession, renting provides a welcome relief in some cases.
"When living in an apartment, you are not typically responsible for the overall maintenance of the home such as random water leaks, pipe bursts, dishwasher repairs and other costly problems," said Schreck. "This lessens the family's expenses and responsibilities, which in turn gives parents more opportunity to put their money elsewhere."