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Best counties in America to live in: Two N.J. counties rank in the top 10

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A home located in Morris County.
A home located in Morris County. - ()

We keep hearing about all these companies moving out of New Jersey, saying other states offer companies more. According to a recent study, the Garden State offers something others can only dream of: Two counties among the 10 best in the country to live.

And four in the Top 20 and five in the Top 30.

The survey, produced by the Movato Real Estate blog, has some science behind it, ranking 640 counties in six categories, based on the 2010 census:

  • Unemployment rate (the lower the better);
  • Median household income (the higher the better);
  • Median rent (the higher the better, to indicate area’s desirability);
  • Median home price (the higher the better, to indicate desirability);
  • Percent of families below the poverty line (the lower the better);
  • And high school graduation rate (the higher the better).

Based on these statistics, Somerset County was ranked the fifth best place to live in the country, just ahead of Morris (sixth). Bergen (17th), Monmouth (18th) and Burlington (30th) also ranked.

RELATED: NJBIZ ranks the best places to work in N.J.

The survey had great things to say about Somerset County:

"There’s beauty, friendliness, and a ton to see and do," the blog said. "Of course, this place also had some serious stats saying that this is an ideal county for anyone to call home.

"With the fourth highest median household income and the fourth lowest poverty on our list, it’s easy to see why locals want to live here. That desire to live in the area shows pretty strong through the pricey median rent and housing costs."

RELATED: Three N.J. colleges rank in Forbes' Top 200

Morris County also got high praise.

"This home to 492,694 had the sixth highest household income, a stunning $91,469, and the 16th lowest poverty, making it a good place live comfortably financially," the blog wrote. "Of course, if you’re looking to start a family or have children that need a solid education, you could do a lot worse. The high school graduation rate was over 93 percent, so prepare to gain a little in the smarts department if you decide to move here."

Here is the top 10 overall:

10. Rockingham (New Hampshire)

9. Frederick (Maryland)

8. Montgomery (Maryland)

7. Washington (Minnesota)

6. Morris (New Jersey)

5. Somerset (New Jersey)

4. Chester (Pennsylvania)

3. Fairfax (Virginia)

2. Douglas (Colorado)

1. Loudoun (Virginia)

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Write to the Editorial Department at editorial@njbiz.com

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