Englewood New Jersey

15 Best Places to Live in New Jersey for Black Families

Best Places to Live in New Jersey for Black Families

When deciding where to call home, there are many factors that every family should consider. Factors can range from the quality of local schools, the strength of the local economy, to very simply—the cultural vibrancy and diversity of your community.

For black families, making this sort of decision may include the consideration of historical, racial inclusivity and equity and the presence of black culture in a prospective neighborhood. With those things in mind, we’ve done a lot of research to create an information list on the 15 best places to live in New Jersey for black families.

15. Hillside, Union County

Our first spot on the list of the best places to live in New Jersey for black families is Hillside in Union County. With a population of about 22,000, this town has a strong sense for community while still offering access to the amenities of larger urban areas.

This town boasts a large cultural diversity with nearly 60% identifying as African American. This form of community engagement is often displayed through annual festivals like the Hillside Cultural Festival. In this festival, Black culture celebrates by providing food, music, and local artisan crafts.

Besides that, Hillside presents a strong educational system. Schools such as George Washington School offer rigorous academic opportunities. 

14. Lawnside, Camden County

Lawnside is a very small, rural town in New Jersey with an especially strong African American presence. With a population that is over 90% Black, this town was one of the first self-governing African American communities north of the Mason-Dixon line.

This deep history reflects itself through strong ties to community and pride in cultural heritage from the area. The Lawnside School District provides a safe and nurturing educational environment with much opportunity for student success.

The affordable housing, crime rate, and close proximity to Philadelphia make living in Lawnside the best place to live in New Jersey for a black family. 

13. Englewood, Bergen County

Englewood is a diverse city located in the affluent Bergen County. Much of Englewood’s charm lies within its strong Black community. The arts scene pulses within the city, and institutions such as The Bergen Performing Arts Center provide multitudes of cultural experiences.

The town is well-known for its strong education system and schools like Dwight Morrow High School that provide an outstanding range of extracurriculars as well as excellent academic programs. Housing choices are impressive, ranging from more affordable homes to luxury estates.

12. East Orange, Essex County

A large city of significant population, East Orange is one of the most populous cities in the state. The city has several Black-owned businesses contributing to a vibrant local economy and also boasts development projects undertaken with an intent at increasing the quality of life among its residents.

As for school/education, East Orange School District provides a solid educational foundation for its students who are committed to promoting diversity and showing inclusiveness.

11. Teaneck, Bergen County

Teaneck holds true to being a diverse community with a sizable Black population. Reputations for great quality of education have made this town famous among New Jersey’s high school graduates.

Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck gives families access to many cultural and educational resources as well. Housing options throughout the market in Teaneck seem extremely diverse across many price choices for all family incomes.

10. Montclair, Essex County

Montclair is an artsy town with a strong Black community. The place has maintained its vibrant art culture, boasting several theaters, art galleries and cultural festivals all through the year round.

Montclair School District ensures high-quality academic as well as extracurricular programs for their students. Moreover, the town provides various housing markets where homes vary from charming Victorian houses to modern apartments.

9. Maplewood, Essex County

Maplewood is a mixed community that’s known for its diverse welcoming community and a dedication to social justice. It boasts many initiatives celebrating racial equity and creating processes designed to foster social change.

The town has great educational opportunities in New Jersey with schools like Columbia High School recognized for their rigorous academic programs. Their housing market offers a variety of single-family homes and apartments. 

8. West Orange, Essex County

West Orange is a diverse town with a strong sense of community. It has an impressive African American population with several initiatives from the municipal level aimed towards creating racial equity.

The town gets recognition for its high-quality education, most notably West Orange High School that sits among the best in the state. West Orange houses one of the most diversified housing markets. Depending on budgets and family needs, there are various options to choose from.

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7. Somerset, Somerset County

Somerset is a culturally diverse community with a strong African American presence. The city has many Black-owned businesses that impact the local economy. Franklin Township Public Schools serve Somerset.

This public school district offers students a solid educational foundation fostering success as well as future job opportunities. Most of the housing in this community consists of condos, townhomes and single family homes.

6. Willingboro, Burlington County

Willingboro is a town with strong ties to their community, and the people are very welcoming. The town has enjoyed a rich history with African American culture along with many black-owned business establishments.

Willingboro Public Schools have made it their mission to provide quality education to all students they serve. The housing market in the town is affordable which makes it an economical choice for families wanting homes in New Jersey.

5. Roselle, Union County

Roselle is a small lively town full of life and opportunity. It has a strong African American population offering its residents color throughout the year at the Juneteenth Parade and Festival.

The town itself is home to Roselle public schools which offer vast academic training as well as extracurricular programs for students of all ages living in Roselle. Housing choices appear to be diverse within the budget range of options available in Roselle.

4. Newark, Essex County

As the largest city in New Jersey, Newark exudes a vibrant urban lifestyle with the diverse population. A majority of Newark is African American culture. Several cultural festivals are held throughout the year, and many businesses are black-owned.

Newark Public Schools offer educational opportunities from arts to STEM programs. The housing market varies in respect to apartments, whereas single-family homes also exist. Newark is definitely one of the best places to live in New Jersey for black families looking to move to a large city.

3. Plainfield, Union County

Plainfield is a diverse city with a significant black community. It offers a rich cultural scene, with several events like the Plainfield Music Festival showcasing local talent.

Plainfield School District is committed to providing a quality education, with several specialty programs. The city’s housing market offers a range of options, from affordable homes to upscale estates.

2. Irvington, Essex County

Irvington is a lively town with a large Black community. The Town has numerous initiatives committed at creating strong communities which encourage racial equity.

Irvington Public Schools aim to offer quality education for their student populations. The housing market in the town is affordable, making it an excellent choice for middle-class and low-income families alike.

1. South Orange, Essex County

At the top of our list is South Orange. Most weighted in this city is a culturally diverse community with a considerable Black population. Picturesquely located along New Jersey’s Arts Route and famed for its lively arts scene and progressive values, South Orange includes Seton Hall University and the South Orange Performing Arts Center.

The South Orange-Maplewood School District provides an excellent education combined with strong emphasis on diversity and inclusion. The housing options run from historic homes to modern apartments ensuring blacks families are at home in the state of New Jersey.

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