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Setauket NY Homes for Sale: Your Moving Guide

Discover a historic Suffolk County town rich with authentic architecture, revolutionary war roots, coastal water beauty, and remnants of shipbuilding and seafaring days. Ranked the fourth happiest place to live in New York, Setauket promises residents exceptional education, employment, commuting, and home ownership opportunities.

Buying a home in Setauket, New York gains you access to the excellent Three Village school district, proximity to major roads, easy commutes to work and travel destinations, and three highly regarded hospitals including John T. Mather Memorial Hospital, St. Charles Hospital, and Stony Brook University Hospital.

A population of 15,423 with a median age of 45.9 includes an even mix of young, middle-aged, and older adults. Moving to this Long Island town gains you access to a unique character and way of life complete with thriving small businesses, a culture of friendliness and gracious hospitality, and small-town charm less than an hour from the hustle and bustle of New York City.

Background and history

Setauket is part of the historic Three Village area comprising the villages of Old Field, Poquott, the Setaukets, and Stony Brook. The rich roots implanted here include those of Native Americans who first called this Suffolk County region home.

The name “Setauket” is a corruption of “Setalcott”, the Indian tribe from which settlers from New England and Southold purchased almost 30 square miles in 1655. Setauket was the first settlement in the town of Brookhaven and the first seat of town government. Shipbuilding along the harbor east of the old village center gave rise to the name East Setauket and thrived in the early to mid-19th century.

Piano making and a rubber factory followed, and by the late 1800’s, the arrival of the railroad made the area a summer resort. Slack times after World War I lasted past World War II. By the 1960’s and 1970’s, the area exploded with new housing.

Housing and income

The bulk of Setauket homes for sale include single family homes available in a wide range of styles, many of them larger homes on large lots valued at moderate to high prices. 78.87% of the 5,731 households in Setauket and East Setauket are family establishments with an average household income of $210,615 and average home price of $521,196.

Setauket is more of a second or third home area than a place for first-time buyers fresh out of college. However, the area does attract young families moving up from surrounding areas like Centereach, Port Jefferson Station, Nassau County, and the city.

North of Route 25A is where you will find the most desirable and sought-after parts of the Setaukets filled with colonials, ranches, and a scattering of small to quite large cottages almost uniformly valued above $650,000.

The less-expensive Setauket homes for sale are generally found in the southern areas of East Setauket closer to the chronically congested Nesconset Highway, Route 347.

Traffic and transportation

The average Setauket resident commutes 31.5 minutes. Public transportation ranges from ferries to MacArthur Airport. Rail commuters to the city use the Long Island Rail Road in Stony Brook or drive about 20 minutes to the Ronkonkoma station.

Cost of living

The median income in Setauket is $144,609. The median home value is $534,565 and property taxes cost around $3,077. The overall cost of living is 52% higher than the national average with goods and services costing 23% more and housing costing 125% more. The total cost of housing, food, childcare, transportation, health care, taxes, and other necessities averages around $50,940 per year.

Employment and economy

The State University of New York at Stony Brook and the adjoining Stony Brook University Hospital are leading employers of Setauket residents. The university alone staffs more than 1,600 faculty members for more than 20,000 graduate and undergraduate students. Many faculty and hospital employees, scientists, and employees live in the Setaukets.

White-collar workers make up 88.31% of the workforce in East Setauket, with blue-collar employees making up the other 11.69%. East Setauket is home to 535 entrepreneurs (10.84% of the workforce), 2,366 workers employed in private companies (47.92%), and 1,541 people working in governmental institutions (31.21%).

If you buy a home in Setauket, Long Island, expect no shortage of above-average opportunities in employment and upward mobility. Top earners in the area include accountants ($98,000), registered nurses ($103,000), human resources managers ($157,000), web developers ($114,000), and mechanical engineers ($131,000).


The Three Village School District—regarded as one of Long Island’s top public school systems—includes Setauket, East Setauket, Stony Brook, Old Field, Poquott, and parts of South Setauket, Port Jefferson, Port Jefferson Station, Head of the Harbor, and Lake Grove.

There are five elementary schools (K through 6), two junior high schools (grades 7 through 9), and Ward Melville High School in East Setauket (grades 10 through 12). Strong academic programs earn students higher SAT test scores than the state and national averages including 555 in verbal and 568 in math. There are no prekindergarten classes in the area.

The school district and state university are the leading attractions for many families moving to the area. 97% graduates go on to higher education with 73% enrolled in four-year colleges or universities and 73% earning Regents diplomas.


Things to do in Setauket

The five-acre Frank Melville Memorial Park looks out on the mill pond and features walking trails on a 20-acre sanctuary and garden club with a five-acre arboretum. St. George’s Golf and Country Club in East Setauket is an 18-hole golf course open only to members, many from the Setauket area.

Expect plentiful shopping but at a respectable distance. The nearest downtown concentration is in the old Stony Brook village where boutiques, shops, restaurants, and businesses fill the village center. Three miles west is the Smith Havel Mall, featuring nearly 1.4 million square feet of retail space and more than 160 stores.


Best dining in Setauket

Setauket Pastaria offers a unique dining experience that celebrates the love of pizza with delicious Italian food served in abundant portions. In the mood for Japanese cuisine? Domo Sushi is the hidden gem locals trust for the best sushi and delicious Japanese lunch and dinner specials.

Setauket Village Diner Restaurant—family owned and operated since 1967—delivers the freshest ingredients and made to order dishes. Stop by for breakfast, brunch, lunch, early bird dinner, late night tapas, all-day cocktails, beer, and wines.

Se-Port Deli serves up delicious hometown sandwiches and dishes made with top quality, fresh ingredients and available at affordable prices. Via Pizza & Pasta—a staple in the community for 24 years—delivers great quality pizza, a large variety of Italian dishes, and just about anything you want—even items not on the menu.

Chico’s Tex Mex serves fresh cuisine made with the finest ingredients. The hot spot was first a food truck and later opened its first brick and mortar location in East Setauket.

How How Kitchen is a familiar favorite for delivery and take-out Chinese cuisine. Pumpernickles Deli and Market is another popular spot loved for its good service, courteous staff, and tasty sandwiches, salads, rolls, bagels, coffee, and more.


Buy a Setauket home with Team Rita.

Ready to explore Setauket homes for sale? Contact us today to search our database of local Suffolk County housing inventory, schedule an open house, or explore our featured properties for sale.


Author Bio

Rita Tsoukaris launched RE/MAX Integrity Leaders in Centereach in 2006. Her passion for helping people achieve their home ownership dreams has earned her team the number one spot for Long Island homes for sale from 2015 through 2022.


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(all data current as of 7/19/2024)

Listing information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. Read full disclaimer.