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Friday, January 28, 2022
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Let’s imagine a circle with Teaneck, New Jersey in the middle and the outer boundary of the circle representing a two-hour drive. That’s how long it takes to enjoy one movie, four episodes of “Bubble Guppies” or one extended lunch meeting. (Remember those?) It’s just not that much time, but it is short enough for a Shabbat visit and even suitable for a Motzei Shabbat drive.

West Hartford fits into that circle, yet it is a world away in terms of affordability and general quality of life. This is a beautiful community that has continued to grow the last few years and serves as a destination for many young families in search of a frum environment without the pressures of the New York market.

It’s a vibrant community with two OU-affiliated shuls and a Chabad presence. There are more than 250 observant families in the area, many 35 years old and younger. According to Rabbi Tuvia Brander, mara d’atra of Young Israel of West Hartford, the largest Orthodox synagogue in town, his community has more than doubled in the last six years, with 14 babies born in the last year alone.

Allen Weitz, a recent arrival from Highland Park who’s originally from Brooklyn, described West Hartford as a place full of nature, mountains and fresh air. He no longer faces the same stress that living near a city caused.

   

Price

Taxes

153 Brewster Road

3 bdrm, 2 bath, 1790 sq ft

$340,000

$7,409

22 Tecumseh Road

3 bdrm, 2 bath, 1673 sq ft

$350,000

$8,320

17 Iroquois Road

4 bdrm, 2 bath, 1915 sq ft

$400,000

$7,845

 

“I feel like I’m in the Catskills here,” he said, recalling his summers in upstate New York. “I don’t even honk my horn anymore.”

There are two elementary schools that serve the community. The New England Jewish Academy (NEJA) is an Orthodox co-ed religious Zionist school that spans nursey to 12th grade and teaches more than 120 students. NEJA has approximately 43 high school students enrolled in co-ed courses. The community is also served by the Solomon Schechter Day School of Greater Hartford, which goes until eighth grade and has more than 120 students.

NEJA also boasts a generous tuition package. Tuition runs at a maximum of $6,000 for K-1 grades and gradually grows to a maximum of $13,000 for grades 9-12. Subsidized tuition is available for all students thanks to the generosity of Ann and Jeremy Pava. For more information, please visit https://neja.org/tuition-subsidy/. The school also offers need-based financial assistance.

The medical and insurance industries provide tremendous employment opportunities to West Hartford residents. Hartford Hospital and UConn Hospital are the major local medical industry employers, and The Hartford company is a main source of employment for those in the insurance industry. West Hartford is also considered a major regional innovation hub for startup incubators and the aerospace industry.

Below are listed several recent sales that prove the area’s affordability. (Information provided from Realtor.com.)

There are several food options in West Hartford, including the Crown Market, which offers a full-service butchery, deli, sushi station, bakery and takeout food options. Several of the local chain stores have bakeries under supervision, and the local JCC houses a dairy café.

The local entertainment scene includes art galleries, farms, a science museum, a children’s museum, a robust theater community and much more. Let’s not forget the mountains, parks, walking and biking trails and the clean, crisp air. The Colorado Rockies have a minor-league team in town for baseball fans, though most are either fans of the Yankees or the Sox.

The JCC is an important part of the community. It offers many programming options catering to all ages, from small children to seniors. Drama, Israeli theatre, early childhood programming and film festivals are just some of the many programming options. There are pools that support the recreational and swimming lesson programs available. The JCC also has an exciting summer camp program. For more information on the JCC, visit https://tinyurl.com/3ewzpn4r.

At a Glance

State Income Tax: up to 5.50%

Number of Orthodox shuls: 3

Number of schools: 2

For further information, contact youngisraelwh.org/visit, call 860-233-3084, or email [email protected] A virtual open house will be held on December 15 at 8 p.m. RSVP at [email protected] Check them out on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at @YoungIsraelWeHa

David Siegel is a Vice President of Mortgage Lending with Guaranteed Rate Affinity (GRA), a leading national retail mortgage lender. GRA is licensed in all U.S. states except Hawaii and works with many investors, which allows it to provide competitive pricing and a broad channel of unique options to handle the often very specific needs of the community. David has over 15 years of experience at both major banks and mortgage bankers and understands the guidelines of different lenders to help direct his customers to the best loan type for their needs. No one lender is the best option for everyone. David will help you find the right choice for you. He is located at 16 Arcadian Avenue 3rd Floor, Unit C-6, Paramus, NJ 07652. Contact him via email [email protected] or phone 201-725-9527.

NMLS 277243 Guaranteed Rate Affinity NMLS 1598647 Equal Housing Lender.

For licensing, go to nmlsconsumeraccess.org, 16 Arcadian Avenue 3rd Floor, Unit C-6, Paramus, NJ 07652. Licensed by the NJ Dept. of Banking and Insurance.

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