BERNARDS TOWNSHIP, NJ - The news is out, the township is ranked the fifth best place to live in New Jersey according to New Jersey Monthly’s newly published list of the Garden State’s Top 100 Towns.

Bernards Township Mayor Carolyn Gaziano said, “There's no better place to live than in Bernards Township. We have it all: the second lowest equalized tax rate in the State, excellent schools, over 1,000 acres of preserved open space, ease of transportation with two train stations and close proximity to major highways, parks and recreation programs, and facilities that are second to none. Bernards Township also boasts continuing education programs such as Leisure Learning at the library and the Mayor's Speaker Series on Diversity, Inclusion, Culture and Immigration.”

The magazine won't be on the newsstands until Aug. 29, but the magazine released the top 20 towns on Monday, Aug. 21. Bernards Township is in good company, neighboring Long Hill is ranked 17, other nearby towns are also high in the rankings. Chatham Township is ranked second, Berkeley Heights is ranked sixth. New Providence is ranked eighth and Mountainside, which sends its high school students to Governor Livingston High School in Berkeley Heights is ranked 12. Chatham Borough is ranked tenth.  

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"Residential real estate is booming in New Jersey," said New Jersey Monthly editor Ken Schlager. "Our chart is a popular tool that helps potential homebuyers understand which towns are the most desirable."

The 100 Top Towns chart is part of the “Best Places to Live” cover story in the September issue of New Jersey Monthly, available on newsstands on Aug. 29.

 A complete ranking of 513 New Jersey municipalities will be available starting August 28 at njmonthly.com/top-towns. New Jersey Monthly publishes the Hot 100 Towns chart every other year. Leflein Associates, an independent research firm in Ringwood, compiles the chart exclusively for New Jersey Monthly. The chart is based on factors a homebuyer would consider, including home prices, real estate taxes, school results, crime rates, and access to essentials and amenities such as hospitals, theaters and restaurants. Here is this year’s Top 20:

1 Ho-Ho-Kus (Bergen County)

2 Chatham Township (Morris)

3 Glen Rock (Bergen)

4 Rumson (Monmouth)

5 Bernards (Somerset)

6 Berkeley Heights (Union)

7 Montvale (Bergen)

8 New Providence (Union)

9 Denville (Morris)

10 Chatham Borough (Morris)

11 Oradell (Bergen)

12 Mountainside (Union)

13 Millburn (Essex)

14 Cranbury (Middlesex)

15 Chester Township (Morris)

16 River Edge (Bergen)

17 Long Hill (Morris)

18 Cresskill (Bergen)

19 Mountain Lakes (Morris)

20 Livingston (Essex)

Each month, more than half a million New Jersey residents read New Jersey Monthly, which is in its 41st year.

Editor's Note: This article was edited to add comments by Mayor Carolyn Graziano.