Most Americans have never been to New Jersey. However, as the people who live there know, New Jersey is an awesome state.
But is it all roses? Definitely not. Just like any other state, New Jersey has its trouble spots. This article aims to determine, using science, the absolute worst small towns to live in the Garden State. Don’t shoot the messenger, this is all using data.
After analyzing more than 65 of New Jersey’s smallest cities, we came up with this list as the 10 worst small towns in New Jersey where you’d never want to live:
- Mountain Lake
- Audubon Park
- West Wildwood
Of course, many of these cities would rank highly if they were in other states, since New Jersey has its stuff figured out.
Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers, or scroll to the bottom to see how your town ranked.
How do you decide if a place is lousy or not?
In order to rank the worst small towns to live in New Jersey, we had to determine what criteria people like or dislike about a place. It isn’t a stretch to assume that people like low crime, solid education, things to do and a stable economy.
So we scraped the internet for those criteria, and it spit out the answer. Like magic.
How we crunched the numbers
We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using FBI crime data, the Census’s 2010-2014 American Community Survey, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, this is the criteria we used:
- Population Density (The lower the worse)
- Highest Unemployment Rates
- Low housing costs (meaning there’s no demand)
- Adjusted Median Income (Median income adjusted for the cost of living)
- Education (Number of high school dropouts)
- High Crime
We looked at cities with populations between 100 and 1,000 people, of which, there were a lot – 65 to be exact.
Additional note: We get the crime numbers from the FBI, which gets its crime numbers from the cities themselves. Dropout numbers are based on the adult population, not just the current graduation rates of teenagers.
Population: 392 Median Income: $39,583
Median Home Value: $163,100
Population: 764 Median Income: $46,818
Median Home Value: $208,300
Population: 767 Median Income: $61,250
Median Home Value: $121,100
Population: 260 Median Income: $70,781
Median Home Value: $252,300
Population: 349 Median Income: $65,938
Median Home Value: $156,600
Population: 895 Median Income: $43,482
Median Home Value: $155,800
7. Mountain Lake
Population: 598 Median Income: $51,319
Median Home Value: $190,800
8. Audubon Park
Population: 993 Median Income: $44,850
Median Home Value: $63,600
Population: 846 Median Income: $59,375
Median Home Value: $257,200
10. West Wildwood
Population: 500 Median Income: $47,411
Median Home Value: $259,200
There You Have It – The Worst Small Towns In New Jersey
If you’re analyzing teeny places in the Garden State with the worst economic situations, where there’s high crime and there’s not a lot to do, this is an accurate list.
If you’re curious enough, here are the best small towns to live in New Jersey, according to science.
- Best: Blawenburg
- 2nd Best: Interlaken
- 3rd Best: Skillman
For more reading, check out:
Ranking Of The 100 Worst Small Towns In New Jersey
|West Cape May||22|
|Cape May Point||35|
|Silver Lake Cdp (Warren County)||36|
|East Rocky Hill||61|