Home prices, rents surge in local towns

May not be good news for those with impoverished populations
Hudson County is attractive to both buyers and renters.
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Hudson County is attractive to both buyers and renters.

A report released last month from Pure Properties gives data on home prices and rents rising throughout Hudson County. Prices are rising especially high in Bayonne and Jersey City, according to the report, as well as according to data from Zillow. Nestled between the suburbs and Manhattan, homes in Hudson County are more attractive than ever.

This may not be good news for everyone. The rate of foreclosure in Hudson County remains high, with one in 131 homes foreclosed in 2017, an 11 percent decline since 2016, according to a different recent report from ATTOM Data Solutions, a real estate data firm. And about two in five Hudson County residents don’t have enough money to pay for basic needs, including housing, food, transportation, healthcare and taxes, says an annual study from the United Way of Northern New Jersey called “Asset Limited Income Constrained (ALICE),” released this year. Twenty-four percent of Hudson County residents live within the ALICE threshold, and another 15 percent live in poverty. The report also shows that a family of four in NJ with two children needed an annual income of $74,748 in 2016 to cover basic expenses, including the cost of childcare and a smartphone.

Here are the comparisons by town:

Bayonne

The October report from Pure Properties shows that Bayonne’s housing market is rising in value at the highest rate, at about 19 percent for one- to four-family homes since last year. Bayonne homes are selling faster, too, with the average home selling in 35 days in the third quarter of the year, down from 58 days the typical time spent on the market in the third quarter of 2017. Median rents in Bayonne have gone up about 7 percent since last year, averaging $1,600 per month.

Meanwhile, 56 percent of the 25,377 Bayonne households live above the ALICE threshold, and 44 percent live below it, with 15 percent in poverty.

Hoboken

Hoboken is the lone Hudson County city where home prices declined since last year. The median sale price for a Hoboken home is about $632 K, down from about $750 K in 2017, according to Zillow. The median rental listing, meanwhile, is about $2,800, down from nearly $3,000 in 2017 and 2016.

Hoboken is an affluent city, with 80 percent of the city’s 25,000 households living above the ALICE threshold, by far the highest in the county. Ten percent are within the ALICE threshold and ten percent live in poverty.

Jersey City

The median listing price for a home in Jersey is around $600 K, up from around $400 K in 2017. Meanwhile, median rental listing prices in Jersey City are at $2,130, which has remained mostly constant since 2016. Sale prices for one- to four-family homes in downtown and the Heights have increased in price by about 7 percent, while Bergen-Lafayette homes have jumped 20 percent since last year, according to Pure Properties.

58 percent of the city’s nearly 100,000 households live above the ALICE threshold, 42 percent live below it, with 18 percent in poverty.

North Bergen

Zillow’s home value index shows North Bergen homes jumping in value by around 12.6 percent since 2017. Median sales prices rose to around $350 K in 2016 and are now up to more than $400 K. Rental prices have declined since their peak in 2016 of more than $2,300 per month to around $2,100 per month in 2018.

Fifty-five percent of the city’s 21,644 households live above the ALICE threshold, 45 percent live below it, with 16 percent in poverty.

Secaucus

The median listing price for a home in Secaucus is $452,900, a 3.5 percent increase since 2017. Rental listings remain fairly constant at around $2,100 per month, down from peak prices in 2015 and 2016 of nearly $2,400 per month, according to Zillow.

Seventy-seven percent of the town’s 6,905 households live above the ALICE threshold, 23 percent live below it, with seven percent in poverty.

Union City

Zillow’s home value index shows Union City homes rising in value by 16.5 percent since last year. The median list price for a home in Union City is about $430 K, up from about $370 K in 2017. Meanwhile, rental homes increased in price modestly, from about $1,900 last year to $2,000 in 2018. While the rents in Union City and Bayonne are similar, the median Union City rental costs slightly moe than $2 per square foot, and only $0.90 per square foot in Bayonne.

44 percent of the city’s 23,675 households live above the ALICE threshold, 55 percent live below it, with 23 percent living in poverty.

Weehawken

The value of the median Weehawken home is up around 17 percent since last year to around $756 K, according to Zillow. The median listing price, meanwhile, is nearly $1 million. The township does not have a high rate of renters, but the rental prices have steadily declined since 2015. Zillow’s rent index pegs Weehawken at about $2,400 per month.

Sixty-eight percent of the township’s nearly 6,000 households live above the ALICE threshold, 32 percent live below it, with 12 percent in poverty.

West New York

Zillow shows West New York homes to have increased in value by about 8.3 percent since 2017. Zillow’s home value index pegs the median home to be valued at nearly $400 K, up from $340 K in 2017. The median rental listing price is nearly $2,200 at $2.19 per square foot. Rentals have remained mostly constant after peaking at around $2,400 in 2015 and 2016.

Fifty-one percent of the city’s 19,000 live above the ALICE threshold, 49 percent live below it, with 22 percent in poverty.

Rory Pasquariello can be reached at roryp@hudsonreporter.com 

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