Whether you’re looking for your next vacation spot or finding a new place to live, here are the top 10 safest cities in New Jersey. Whether you’re looking for a city with a bigger population and more entertainment or a smaller town with historic streets, New Jersey has the variety you are looking for.
With a list ranked by crime rates, you can ensure your safety while traveling or trying to find your next neighborhood. No matter where you choose, New Jersey is a state filled with history, attractions, and industry, just waiting to be explored.
Is New Jersey Safe? — About New Jersey
New Jersey is one of the 13 original states of the United States. It borders Pennsylvania, Delaware, New York, and the Atlantic Ocean, and its capital is Trenton.
New Jersey was named after the island of Jersey, and it’s considered to be the Crossroads of the East. It’s highly industrialized, and almost 17% of its land is covered in productive farmland. The most popular commodities you’ll find in New Jersey are garden vegetables, peaches, cranberries, blueberries, dairy products, and seafood.
If you’re still wondering, “what is New Jersey famous for? Tourists that visit this state will love the number of diners in New Jersey. Some might even claim that NJ has the most diners in the world! The state is also the home of the tallest water tower – Union Watersphere, and New Jersey was where the motion picture projector, the light bulb, and the phonograph were invented.
If you’re thinking about moving to this state and you’re wondering whether or not NJ is safe, this portion of our article is for you! New Jersey is actually one of the safest states. With a crime rate per 1000 residents of only 15.4, your chances of becoming a victim of a violent crime are just 1 in 483.
New Jersey has a population of approximately 8,882,190 people. The median household income in the state is $82,545, and the per capita income sits at $42,745. According to the latest available data, about 9.2% of people live in poverty.
Top 10 Safest Cities in New Jersey
River Vale Township
River Vale is a part of Bergen County and used to belong to Harrington Township. Back then, it was known as the “Over Kill Neighborhood” because it was located over the Hackensack River (commonly called “a kill”). River Vale officially became a township in 1906, and it has around 9,800 residents.
This town is one of the safest towns in America. The official data shows that there weren’t any violent crimes in the area in 2019. Additionally, only 20 property crimes were reported, giving it an overall crime rate of 1.9, which is 98% lower than the national average.
Residents of River Vale earn much more than most New Jerseyans. The median household income for the town is $153,161, and the per capita income is $68,619. River Vale is one of the towns in New Jersey with the lowest poverty rates. Only 2.4% of residents live in poverty, way below the New Jersey average. The average value of homes in River Vale is $679,73, and the median gross rent is slightly below $1,600.
In case you ever find yourself in River Vale, you should visit its Farmers Market and the Public Library. If you get bored, you can always go to the River Vale Country Club, where you can join golf tournaments or a Toptracer range contest.
Sparta is one of the safest cities in New Jersey. Although it’s officially a township that belongs to Sussex County, it gained its name after the community of Sparta, which was named after the well-known city-state in ancient Greece. According to the latest data available, it currently has around 18,500 residents, and over 51% of them are women.
If Sparta sounds like a place you would like to move to, it’s useful to know that the typical home value in this town is $435,446, and the median gross rent from the period from 2015 to 2019 was $1,472.
Sparta has higher earnings than most other cities of New Jersey. The median household income is $138,061, while per capita income is $61,186. Unsurprisingly, only 2.3% of the residents live in poverty.
Sparta has a crime rate of only 2.3 per 1000 people. In 2019, residents reported just six property offenses and 43 violent crimes.
This town has a lot of exciting places to offer visitors. For those who love parks, the Kittatinny Valley State Park or Sparta Glen Park are must-sees. History buffs will also benefit, with museums such as the Sparta Historical Society and the Friar Mountain Model Railroad Museum open year-round.
If you’re wondering what parts of New Jersey are close to NYC and are safe enough to live in, you should consider Kinnelon. This town is actually a borough in Morris County, and it’s only 33 miles from New York City.
The city’s previous name was Charlottenburg, after Charlotte, the wife of King George III. In 1922, Kinnelon officially became a borough and gained its name in honor of the son of Francis Kinney, an industrialist who purchased a large portion of the town’s land in 1884 for his summer cottage.
This is one of the safest towns in NJ. In 2019, Kinnelon had a crime rate of only 2.3 per 1000 residents. During that year, people reported only one violent crime and 22 property offenses.
Kinnelon has a population of almost 9,900 people. The per capita income in the town is $66,336, while the median household income sits at $158,000. Less than 3% of people live in poverty despite the relatively high cost of living.
The typical home value in the town is $636,978, and house values rose by almost 11% in 2021. If you’re looking to rent, know that the median gross rent is $2,040.
The population of the New Jersey town, New Providence is estimated to be around 13,600, and is officially titled a “borough” in Union County.
This borough has a rich history and many interesting tales. In the 1700s, the area where New Providence is located used to be known as the “Turkey Town” due to a large wild turkey population. According to local tales, George Washington once spent the night in a local home that exists still to this day. Many years later, in 1809, New Providence became a township, but in 1900, the town was reincorporated as a borough.
New Providence is close to the safest city in New Jersey. It has a crime rate of 2.7 per 1000 residents, and residents reported 36 property crimes and no violent crimes in the area in 2019.
The safety of the town comes with a price. If you want to buy a house there, you’ll likely have to spend around $672,000. The median gross rent is also high, at $1,733. On the upside, incomes are pretty high in this town. The median household income is $143,672, while the per capita income sits at $70,292.
If you would like to visit one of the safest places in New Jersey, New Providence is a great choice. It has been a semi-dry area for 100 years, meaning that restaurants and bars were not allowed to sell alcohol. In 2015, however, the town changed the rules and granted liquor licenses to restaurants again, pledging to use the money from alcohol for town renovations.
Bergenfield is a borough located in Bergen County. The name was given by the New Jersey and New York Railroad officials who, upon building a station and not agreeing on the name, simply put “Bergen Fields” on the tickets. When Bergenfield (one of the safest places in New Jersey) was officially incorporated in 1804, the leaders modified the name into Bergenfield.
Bergenfield’s crime rate is 3.4 per 1000 people. In 2019, residents reported 15 property offenses and 78 violent crimes. It hosts around 27,300 residents, and over 52% of them are female.
Those looking to rent in Bergenfield should know that the median gross rent for the town is only $100 higher than the NJ average, at $1,420, and the typical home value is also higher, at $453,901.
The per capita income of Bergenfield residents is lower than in most towns in North Jersey, and it amounts to $38,193, while the median household income is more than $10,000 higher than the state average, at $96,335. Around 6.7% of residents live in poverty, approximately 2.5% lower than the NJ average.
Warren Township is part of Somerset County in New Jersey, and is officially considered a bedroom suburb of the New York metropolitan area. It is one of the safest cities in the New York metro area, with a crime rate of only 2.8. In 2019, residents reported two violent crimes and 42 property crimes, and according to the latest estimates, Warren has around 15,600 residents.
The township’s incorporation took place in 1806 from portions of Bridgewater Township and Bernards Township and is named as a tribute to the war hero General Joseph Warren. This area started gaining popularity in the 1900s when wealthy New Yorkers looking for a more relaxed place to live would choose Warren due to its proximity to the city.
Warren Township is one of the highest-earning places in New Jersey. The per capita income is $82,261, while median household income sits at $170,264. Only 2.7% of people live in poverty.
Despite having residents with high earnings, median gross rent is not much higher than the NJ average: $1,651, and a typical house in Warren costs $790,805.
Warren is constantly being ranked in the nation’s best places to live. What sets this township apart from others is the quality of education, wide, open spaces, and plenty of working farms. Those that want to visit the town should go there during their June carnival.
Dumont is one of the safe places to live in New Jersey near NYC. With a crime rate of only 3.5 and its close proximity to the Big Apple, Dumont became a popular choice for everyone looking to stay out of the crowds without missing out on the action. Regarding the low crime rate, residents reported only six violent crimes and 56 property offenses in 2019.
Dumont was first called the Borough of Schraalenburgh. It was formed in 1891 from parts of Palisades Township and Harrington Township. The town later changed the name to Dumont to honor the first mayor of the city, Dumont Clarke.
As one of the safest towns in NJ in 2021, Dumont currently has a population of 17,500. The median household income of residents is $100,219, and per capita income is $47,885. About 4.8% of people live in poverty, which is more than 4% less than the state average.
For renters in Dumont, the median gross rent is below the New Jersey average, at $1,306, and the typical house in Dumont costs around $457,570.
Tenafly is a borough that’s located in Bergen County. The town was officially incorporated in 1894, and it has a population of around 14,450 people.
Tenafly is a beautiful city in New Jersey, but it comes with fairly high rents in comparison to the rest of the state. The median gross rent in the area is $2,271, and home values are also exceptionally high, with an average price of $866,532.
Residents of Tenafly do, however, have some of the highest earnings typically sitting around $72,800 annually. The median household income is $172,926, roughly $90,000 higher than the average New Jersey resident. Only 2.8% of people live in poverty, which is almost 6.5% lower than the state average.
This town is on our list because it’s among the safest cities in NY for 2021. Officially, the crime rate in Tenafly is 6.3, but the latest numbers show that last year only one violent crime was reported, and just 90 property offenses.
Medford is a township that was incorporated in 1847 from parts of the Shamong Township, Medford Lakes, and Lumberton Township, but it’s now part of Burlington County of New Jersey.
Medford isn’t yet one of the cities in south New Jersey, as it tries to maintain its suburban charm and historic streets. The township’s officials are working hard to keep the area as close to its original state as possible while also creating the residential portions of the town with respect to the lakes, streams, and woodlands around the city.
The average home value in the town is $429,369, and the median gross rent is $1,335. In case you relocate there, you will have around 23,400 neighbors.
As one of the safest towns in South Jersey, Medford has a crime rate of 6.5 per 1000 residents, and in 2019, residents reported 19 violent and 134 property crimes.
When it comes to the residents’ earnings, people in Medford have higher incomes than most New Jerseyans. The median household income in the township is $124,471, and the per capita income for the period from 2015 to 2019 was $58,825. With a poverty rate of just 2.5%, this township demonstrates a high quality of life for its residents.
Chatham is one of the quaint and small towns in New Jersey. It has a crime rate of 7.3 per 1000 residents. In 2019, there were no violent crimes committed in this town, and only 63 property offenses were reported.
Chatham is a township based in New Jersey’s Morris County. It was officially incorporated in February of 1806 and 10,100 people live in the area at the moment.
Those that want to rent a property in this town won’t be glad to read that the median gross rent is almost $1,000 higher than the state average at $2,204, and the average home value in Chatham is higher than in most North Jersey towns at around $832,000.
Earnings are much higher, however, with the median household income is $189,297, and the per capita income sits at an amazing $104,953. With less than 3% of residents living in poverty, landing a job in Chatham could give you a great quality of life.
This town does not offer that many amenities, although one of the landmarks residents enjoy is the Colony Pool Club which contains 30,000 square feet of freshwater pool and 8,300 square feet of beach sand.
What Is the Best Place to Live In NJ – Ranked by Crime Rate
Toms River is a township in Ocean County. It used to be called Township of Dover, with Toms River being a small community in the area, but after the U.S. Postal Service adopted mailing addresses of Toms River for the whole township, residents started getting confused. The resolution was to officially change the name of the township in 2006. Today, it isn’t exactly one of the small towns in New Jersey, with around 94,100 residents, but it does keep its small-town charm.
The streets of Toms River might look familiar, as popular TV shows such as Boardwalk Empire and MTV’s Jersey Shore were filmed there.
Residents of Toms River earn less than the state average, with a median household income of $79,607 and a per capita income of $39,409. About 7.6% of people live in poverty, and home values are lower than in most other towns. A typical house costs around $301,500, and the median gross rent is $1,414.
If we only consider larger towns, Toms River is one of the safest towns in South Jersey. The crime rate per 1000 residents is 12.9, with 68 violent and 1075 property crimes reported in 2019.
Spending any season in Toms River is a great idea, but for the perfect experience, consider going there during Halloween for the second-largest Halloween parade in the world.
Princeton consists of the former Township of Princeton and Borough of Princeton. After sharing public services for a certain period of time, they decided to officially reunite in 2013. Princeton is one of the most popular towns in New Jersey because it’s the home of Princeton University, one of the prestigious Ivy League schools in the United States.
Besides the university, you can also find other essential institutions in Princeton, such as the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Westminster Choir College, and the Opinion Research Corporation. At the moment, the city has around 31,100 residents, 8,419 of which are students.
The crime rate in Princeton, New Jersey, is 15.4 per 1000 residents. In 2019, the town reported 465 property offenses and 16 violent crimes.
The quality of life in Princeton is quite good, as residents earn more than the state average, and according to the newest estimation, the per capita income in this town is $77,436. The median household income is $137,672, but still, about 7.8% of people live in poverty. The median gross rent is $1,532, while the typical home value in this city is $702,477.
Newark is a city of New Jersey with the largest population and currently has 282,011 residents. For those wanting a New Jersey city that is bigger but still safe, Newark is a place to consider.
Newark’s crime rate is still reflective of a larger population, with 24 crimes committed per 100 residents. In 2019, residents reported 1,812 violent and 4,947 property crimes.
Newark is a lower-income city with a low cost of living. The median household income is only $35,199, and per capita income is $20,163. The number of people living in poverty is way above the state average at 27.4%. As a result, the rent is much lower than in most North Jersey cities, sitting at around $1,085. Home values are also lower, with a typical house costing around $358,307.
Newark is the seat of Essex County. It’s also the home of several major companies such as Panasonic Corporation of North America, Audible, PSEG, and Prudential. If you ever find yourself in this town, you must visit some of the beautiful mansions around the city. A lot of which were built by big beer brewers throughout history.
Jersey City is one of the biggest cities in New Jersey and the second-most populous one. The city currently has around 262,075 residents, and it’s one of the cities with the highest density in the United States.
One of the things that makes this city attractive is its proximity to New York City. In addition, Jersey’s connection to the Hackensack River, Newark Bay, Upper New York Bay, and Hudson River make it an important transportation terminus and manufacturing center. The newest redevelopment of the town’s waterfront led to it becoming one of the biggest centers of banking and finance in the entire country.
Is Jersey City, NJ safe? The crime rate per 1000 residents is 24.7, and in 2019, 1,394 violent and 5,076 property crimes were reported.
Reported at 17.2%, Jersey City has a high percentage of people living in poverty. The per capita income in the town is $42,022, and the median household income sits at $70.752. The median gross rent there is above the state average at $1,402, and the typical home value in this city is $559,055.
Paterson is the county seat of Passaic County of New Jersey, and it is the third-largest city in the state. The Paterson, New Jersey population is estimated to be around 145,200.
This city used to be called “Silk City” due to its history of silk manufacturing for the country in the 19th century. At first, the city was part of the Essex Country, then after Passaic Country was created, Paterson officially became a city and the county seat in 1851.
If you’re planning on moving to Paterson, it’s good to know that in 2019, residents reported 1,219 violent crimes and 3,313 property offenses. The crime rate is 30 per every 1000 residents, making it important to also research New Jersey home security.
Residents of Paterson have lower incomes, with the median household income is $41,360 and per capita income is $18,949. According to the latest estimates, 26.6% of people live in poverty, which is way above the NJ average.
In addition, both home values and rents are lower than in most New Jersey towns. The median gross rent is $1,193, and the typical value of a home in the city is around $355,487.
Ocean City belongs to Cape May County, and It is the principal city of the Ocean City Metropolitan New Jersey Area. This town was originally a borough, and it wasn’t officially a city until 1897.
Part of that image includes the prohibition of alcohol, dating back to 1879, and despite various attempts to amend the law, the restriction remains to this day. Surprisingly, however, Ocean City is one of the most drunken cities in New Jersey with the highest number of alcohol drinkers in the state.
The rate of crime in New Jersey’s Ocean City is similar to other cities in NJ at 30 per 1000 residents. In 2019, 6 violent and 323 property crimes were committed, and the population of this small city is around 11,000 residents.
The per capita income in Ocean City is $53,652, and the median household income sits at $81,076. Only 6.3% of people live in poverty. Those looking to rent in the city should know that the median gross rent is $1,264, and a typical home there has a value of around $730,924.
With around 82,200 residents, Trenton is one of the most populated cities in New Jersey. It’s also the capital of the state and the county seat of Mercer County.
Trenton has great historical significance. The Battle of Trenton was a crucial American Revolutionary War, that named the capital of the U.S. for a brief amount of time.
If you’re planning on living in Trenton, you should prepare yourself for lower paychecks. The median household income amounts to $35,402, while per capita income is only $19,281. As a result, 28.7% of residents live in poverty, which is much more than in most NJ cities.
Renting in one of the largest cities in New Jersey will cost you about $1,026, and a typical home value in the town is $221,734. It may sound low in comparison to other places, but housing values have actually increased by over 18% in recent years.
While the incomes and home values are lower than the state’s average, the crime rate in Trenton is extremely high, with a rate of 33.3 per 1000 residents. In 2019, residents committed 954 violent crimes and 1,818 property offenses.
Elizabeth was the first capital of New Jersey. It was founded in 1665 and is now a county seat of one of the safest counties in NJ: Union County. The town has a pretty diverse population of 129, 200 representing over 50 countries and 37 language groups. Today, it’s a vital regional hub for the East Coast with connections to Manhattan, Newark Liberty International Airport, The Garden State Parkway, and the New Jersey Turnpike.
This town is the home of the first assembly line auto producer in New Jersey, and it’s where the first submarine and the Singer sewing machine were produced. Not to mention, the first ice cream soda was made here.
Even though it’s located in a safe county, Elizabeth is far from the safest city in New Jersey. Its crime rate is 37.4 per 1000 residents, and according to the latest numbers, residents reported 932 violent and 3,906 property crimes during the last year.
The median household income in the town is $48,407, and the per capita income sits at $21,380. In 2019, 17.6% of residents lived in poverty, and the median gross rent is $1,163.
Bridgeton is the county seat of Cumberland County, it became a city in 1865. It is located in the south of New Jersey, on the Cohansey River, with the Delaware Bay being nearby.
In comparison to how many people live in New Jersey, Bridgeton has about 24,160 people. Their incomes are lower than what most New Jerseyans make, with a median household income of $37,804. The per capita income is $16,160, and Bridgeton has a large percentage of people living in poverty—31.2%.
The upside to living in Bridgeton is lower rents. The median gross rent is only $1,129, and home values are also lower than in many other cities of NJ, with a typical house costing around $163,006.
If you’ve been Googling “what are the best neighborhoods in New Jersey,” you won’t find any of Bridgeton’s areas on the lists. The city is safer than only 6% of other towns in the entire United States. Its official crime rate per 1000 residents is 44.3, and in 2019, residents reported 848 property offenses and 223 violent crimes.
Atlantic City officially became a city in 1854 as a combination of Galloway Township and Egg Harbor Township, and it’s located on Absecon Island. Atlantic City is a coastal resort town and a tourist attraction due to the many beaches and casinos around the city.
For those that want to know what is the richest city in New Jersey when it comes to the experience it offers – Atlantic City might be the answer. Monopoly fans would certainly find the names of the streets of Atlantic City familiar as the town inspired the U.S. version of the board game.
Miss America pageant lovers, on the other hand, already know that Atlantic City has been the host of the contest since 1921. Another interesting fact about this town is that casino gambling has only been legal since 1976.
Even though thousands of people pass through the town during a year, Atlantic City is not the largest city in New Jersey. Currently, around 37,700 people live there. The city’s crime rate is 54.6 per 1000 people, and residents reported 323 violent and 1,738 property crimes in 2019.
The median household income is $29,232, while per capita income amounts to $20,380. Over 37% of people live in poverty, and the median gross rent for the town is only $904, while a typical home value amounts to $135,193.
Whether it’s the safest cities in New Jersey you’re looking for, or the wildest, NJ has an option for everyone. It might not be all that NYC has to offer, but that’s why many people choose New Jersey to visit or to live over the Big Apple.
In case you prefer bigger cities with more possibilities, NJ has several resort spots and entertainment districts that can suit any itch for a bigger city vibe. Of course, they come with higher crime rates, but by taking a look at our crime ratings, you can choose the place that’s best and safest for you.