From the Niagara Falls and the shores of the Great Lakes to the sandy beaches of Long Island, New York offers some wild nature and great views. The Empire State is home to the Catskill Mountains and many scenic lakes. This includes Lake George and Lake Champlain which may be home to a possible lake monster dubbed Champy.
The state of New York is home to New York City, the largest city in the United States by population. In addition to that, Toronto is roughly an hour and a half from Buffalo, and Boston, another major city, is roughly two hours away from the state capital of Albany.
New York City is one of the most important global cities with only a few that rival it. It is home to the largest stock exchange, the UN Headquarters, and is massively culturally important. As one of the most densely populated cities in the western world, there is something for everyone in it. This includes museums and cultural centers, some of the best-ranked restaurants in the world, and of course business hubs.
New York is also central to American history. It was one of the 13 original colonies that made up the United States and had a central role in both the Revolutionary and Civil Wars.
New York has been known as an American melting pot. Many different groups of immigrants were welcomed to the United States with the Statue of Liberty in the background. This includes many Irish, Italian, Jewish, and Greek immigrants in the early 20th century. Today the city is even more diverse, with many new immigrants from India, Asia, Central America, and the Caribbean.
New York & Food
Last but not least, New York is home to some of the best food on the globe. This includes the notorious New York pizza, hotdog stands, bagels, and deli sandwiches. If you have an appetite and are in New York, you’re bound to have a great time.
New York & Employment
As previously mentioned, New York is a global hub. As such it is home to a multitude of different companies, especially in the world of finance and tech.
In the world of finance, nearly every major bank, insurance company, and financial services company has a presence in the state. The computer giant IBM has a large headquarters in White Plains, while Twitter & Google have offices in Manhattan.
New York is also home to the largest port on the east coast with over 7.4 million containers of cargo moving in 2019. As such, there is plenty of infrastructure and transportation jobs as well.
Covid-19 & New York
It seems that Covid19 took a bit of a toll on New York’s growth. Heavy Covid-19 restrictions within the state and work-from-home policies may have caused a bit of a temporary decline. While the Empire State is still the 4th most populated state in the union, it will decrease by -2.2% in 2022. This seems to be a temporary decline and California has also registered negative population growth.
As Covid-19 restrictions continue to be lifted and work-from-home policies get reversed the Empire State will likely return to its former glory.
Honorable Mention – Peekskill
On the banks of the mighty Hudson River sits the city of Peekskill, New York. It is roughly 50 miles north or an hour away from the Big Apple itself and many residents commute daily. The city was the birthplace of the actor/director Mel Gibson and the current home of Paul Reubens, who is better known as Pee-wee Herman. Peekskill is surrounded by parks with wild forests, including Blue Mountain Park and Bear Mountain Park. Both are amazing for hiking and fishing.
Peekskill has grown 4.23% since the 2010 census and annually at a rate of 0.44%. This makes the current population 24,619 residents. The rate of homeownership in Peekskill is rather low and is listed at 46% on average. The median age is 38 years old, which suggests many young families in the area. Home prices have increased by 13% since 2021 and cost $432,000 on average. Rent is listed as $1407 per month.
10 – Rye Brook
Right on the border with Connecticut, sits the city of Rye Brook, New York. It’s an upscale suburb also located in Westchester County and is roughly 30 miles northeast of New York City. While not exactly a college town like Ithaca, it is home to Purchase & Manhattanville college. Mastercard has a large corporate campus in the city and there is the Westchester County Airport within its limits.
Rye Brook has a population of 9,530 residents currently. This is a 2% increase since the 2020 census. The rate of homeownership is at 81%, much higher than the national average. The local population is educated and the wide majority has a degree from a higher learning facility. The average home in Rye Brook has increased by 12% in the past year and now exceeds $1 million. Rent in recent years was much more affordable at $1,768 per month.
9 – Middletown
Just slightly north of the New Jersey border is the city of Middletown, New York. It sits in Orange County and is part of the Poughkeepsie–Newburgh–Middletown metro area. It is quite far from New York City and is close to two hours away. The city is home to two different colleges which includes, SUNY Orange and Touro College of Osteopathic Medicine.
The population has grown by 1.42% since the 2010 census and is currently home to 28,546 residents. The rate of homeownership is 51% currently, which is rather low. Housing prices have increased by 20% since 2021 and now stand at $339,000 on average. Rent is rather high when compared to housing prices and stands at $1,230 per month.
8 – Airmont
On the taper of the New York – New Jersey border, just 40 miles northeast of Manhattan is the suburban city of Airmont. The city has two different colleges in its vicinity; including Rockland Community College and St. Thomas Aquinas College nearby. There is also the Dater Mountain Nature Park nearby which offers great hiking paths. The city is also home to plenty of kosher delis for those craving a good pastrami-on-rye sandwich.
Airmont’s population has grown by 1.43% since the 2010 census, bringing the number of residents to 8,768. The average age is rather young at 33 which suggests many young families in the area. The rate of homeownership is above average at 74.4%. Homes in the area have increased by 12% in the past year bringing home values to $600,000 on average. Rent tends to be around $1,570 per month.
7 – Rensselaer
Just across the Hudson River from the state capital, Albany is the city of Rensselaer. It’s pretty safe to call Rensselaer a city in upstate New York due to its distance from New York City. It is known as a major railway hub and is home to the 9th busiest Amtrak station in the US. Rensselaer is home to more than 13 different parks which give the city plenty of character. The University at Albany and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals are also located very close by.
The population of Rensselaer has increased by 16% since the 2000 census but has declined slightly since the 2010 census. It is home to 9,171 residents. The rate of homeownership in the area is low at 42% which suggests there is a large rental market. Housing prices have increased by 16% since 2021 and housing costs $256,000 on average. Rent is listed as just below $1000 in recent years.
6 – Haverstraw
Slightly southwest of Peekskill across the Hudson River sits the city of Haverstraw. It is also roughly an hour away or 42 miles from central Manhattan and many residents commute daily. Haverstraw has the highest population density in northern Rockland county. The municipality also has a few parks located on the Hudson, which offer great views.
Haverstraw has grown by 19% since the 2000 census and 1% since the 2010 census. It is currently home to over 12,054 residents. Homeownership is rather low at 41% which suggests a lively rental market. Housing prices have increased by 12% in the past year and cost $600,000 on average. Rent is listed as $1,377 in recent years.
5 – Harrison
Just west of Rye Brook is the city of Harrison. On its western border, it neighbors the city of White Plains, the County seat and commercial hub of Westchester County. It is a bit closer to the Big Apple than many other cities on the list and is only 30 miles away. It shares the banks of Rye Lake with Rye Brook and is home to the Cranberry Lake Preserve, a protected lake.
Harrison is growing at a very fast pace of 3.35 per year and has grown by 16% since the 2010 census. The population is 32,000 residents currently. The rate of homeownership is 66% which is rather high when compared to other cities on the list. Average housing prices have soared by 25% since 2021 and now cost $1,100,000 on average. Rent is listed as $2,222 in recent years.
4 – Woodbury
Not to be confused with Woodbury in Orange County, there is also a Woodbury in Nassau County, Long Island. It is an upscale suburb just 34 miles east of Manhattan filled with manicured lawns and large single family homes. There are also three large parks in the vicinity, including Stillwell Woods Park, Cold Spring Harbor State Park, and Trail View State Park.
Woodbury is home to a slightly older population. The average age is listed at 52 years old, which suggests many pensioners. The city has grown by 24% since the 2000 census but has plateaued in recent years. Home prices have increased by 11% in the past year. Today prices are $1,200,000 on average. Rent is listed at $2,846 per month.
3 – Spring Valley
Just east of Airmont is the city of Spring Valley, New York. The city is a walkable distance from the New Jersey border and just 22 miles northwest of NYC. The small city has a large park in its center and a train station that can take you straight to Penn Station in New York City. Rockland Community College and the New York Country Club are also nearby in the area.
Spring Valley’s population has increased by 2.44% since the 2010 census and is home to 32,000 residents. The average age in Spring valley is low at 29 years old, which suggests many young families. The rate of homeownership is 28% which is very low in comparison to the national average. The average home in the area costs $600,000 which is a 12% increase since 2021. Rent is listed at $1343 per month in recent years.
2 – New Square
North of Spring Valley is the small city of New Square, New York. The population is made up almost entirely of a Hasidic Jewish community of the Skverer Jewish movement. The followers of the Skverer movement moved from Brooklyn to New Square as a way to separate their community from other movements. As a Hasidic town, many signs in Yiddish can be seen across the area’s streets.
New Square’s population is increasing at a rate of 1.97% per year and 32% since the 2010 census. The number of residents stands at 9,303 currently. The average age in New Square is 14 years old, which suggests many young families with plenty of children. The rate of homeownership stands at just 9% which means many rent in the area. Home prices now stand at $605,000 on average while rent is listed at $1,350 per month.
1 – Kiryas Joel
Roughly an hour northwest of New York City is the small city of Kiryas Joel, New York. Like New Square, it is a Hasidic or ultra-orthodox Jewish community. This time it is the home of the Satmar Hasidic community. Many of the homes are large townhouse-style buildings that are split into condos. One of the city’s perks is its strong public transportation system which links it with Manhattan, as well as Brooklyn.
Kiryas Joel is the fastest growing city or township in New York. It is growing at a rate of 4.79% per year and 52% since the 2010 census. The average age is even younger than New Square with 13.8 being the average. The rate of homeownership is 28% which is very low. Housing values have increased by 21% in the past year and are listed as $492,278 on average. Rent is listed as $1,229 per month.
New York & Real Estate
The Empire State may have seen some rough times during the Covid-19 era. Some residents have moved to different more affordable states such as Florida due to work-from-home edicts. This in-turn may have stunned the great state’s growth. Some real estate investors may want to take advantage of this and invest before prices start rising sharply once again. All one needs to do is remember that New York is culturally and financially the center of the globe and have a bit of faith.