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Is Montclair the New Beachfront Property?

300px-Upper_Montclair_Station_-_July_2010As a New Jersey Realtor, I am a member of the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Last week I read a news release on the NAR website that confirmed what I've been seeing over the past several years: homes near public transportation tend to command a higher price than others.

According to a study done by NAR and the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), homes located near public transportation with high frequency service performed 42% better during the last recession than those further away. The difference in value was so striking that APTA President and CEO Michael Melaniphy declared, "When homes are located near public transportation, it is the equivalent of creating housing as desirable as beach front property."

The study looked at housing prices in metropolitan Boston, San Francisco, Phoenix, Chicago, and the Twin Cities. Although New York was not included, I would certainly add it to the list.  Montclair homes located along the DeCamp bus route or near one of 6 New Jersey Transit train stations lost remarkably little of their value during the recent economic downturn demonstarting that while prime Montclair real estate may be pricey in the short term, it is a smart investment (not to mention a terrific place to live) in the long term.