Good news and bad news. I'd like to end this on a happy note so I'll get the bad news out of the way first.

Having just closed on our new home Friday my wife and I are now in the high property tax club. It's one of those 'You know you're from Jersey when...' check-off list things. Like hitting a deer or fighting for a parking space in Hoboken, high property taxes are a Jersey thing. We'll be over $12,000 a year so it could be worse, but it could certainly be better. The good news within the bad news is Raritan Township has excellent schools, and we have a lot of kids, so I tell myself it's worth it. Plus it's just an all around great area. Yet it kills me to hear what people in other states pay in property taxes for homes that are far more elaborate with much more land. Like I said, it's the constant Jersey lament.

The good news is everything went fairly smoothly. Our real estate attorney Jennifer Fleischer worked everything out amicably when one little glitch popped up. Closings can occasionally turn nightmarish so all things considered this one was pretty easy. Thanks Jennifer! Also huge thanks to Tracy Sonner our buyer's agent. Aubree and I worked with her for the past 3 months and she was nothing short of excellent. Also big thanks to Jahn Beckler of AMS Mortgage. When I first talked to Jahn, I honestly didn't know if I could even qualify for a mortgage. I've been pretty public about the short sale I had to go through, and I feel for anyone who had to go through it during the great recession like I did. It's not as bad as foreclosure but it definitely beats you up for several years. Jahn was completely understanding about my situation and gave me invaluable advice on a couple of moves to improve my credit rating and improve my chances. In the end he made it all happen and I can't thank the guy enough, starting with a beer I owe him!

So now the packing begins. And the painting. And the moving. And the changing over all our accounts to a new address. I'm getting tired just thinking about it. But so looking forward to it! And by the way, our move to Raritan Township is nothing against Hillsborough. We're soon going to have four kids, and we tried looking for a five bedroom house in our current town of Hillsborough but there was just nothing we could afford. I'll miss the people there, but we're looking forward to exploring and getting to know Hunterdon County. One thing they have more of is deer. Already I've seen deer right on our new street three different times! So along with the property taxes, maybe I'll soon be checking off another box on that 'You know you're from Jersey when...' list.

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