Do you want to migrate to California to live with your family? If YES, here are 10 best cities in California with lots of opportunities to raise a family.
Choosing the ideal place to raise a family is one of the most crucial life decisions you have to make. There are a lot of factors about where you live that can affect your family’s quality of life and their happiness. Thus, moving to a new location is not a decision that should be made lightly.
Factors to Consider When Choosing to Move to California
First and foremost, employment opportunities are a very critical factor when choosing a place to raise your family. You have to make a living in order to support yourself and your family; therefore, having the available career and job opportunities that not only meet your financial needs, but allows you to have enough time for your family, is extremely important.
Whether you are looking to rent or buy your home, another important factor to consider is the cost of living. The cost of living varies greatly all over the country — from the cost to rent or buy your home, taxes, insurance, transportation, gas, utilities, groceries, etc.
All of these expenses need to be factored into the decision you make about whether or not you can afford to live in the new location, particularly in light of any changes in salary and employment you may have to make in your new location.
You should also consider transportation in and around your new home. Some cities have very sophisticated and streamlined public transportation that you may not require your own vehicle, while in other cities you may require a personal vehicle to get around.
According to a recent study, California is considered to have some of the worst traffic in the world with drivers having spent over 1,000 hours of their time stuck in traffic last year alone. However, it doesn’t mean living in California is not ideal.
There are many benefits that come with living in California, including proximity to some of the best real estate in the country, premium beach access, consistent weather and a music scene to die for. Crime rate and crime statistics are also very crucial factor to consider when choosing a place to live.
In addition to finding a crime free area to live, it is also very critical that you fit in and feel welcomed into the community you choose. If you move to a city that’s extremely small, where everyone knows everyone and you’re more of a private person, that might not be the right place for you.
You should also consider the school and education system where you are located. Like evaluating the commute to work, you will also want to make sure that the schools for your children are in close proximity to where you live and work.
To find the best place to raise a family, read on as we present the best 10 cities, in no particular order, to raise a family in California based on housing costs, cost of childcare, crime rates and many other factors.
10 Best Cities in California to Raise a Family Successfully
- Los Gatos
Los Gatos is bounded by the City of San Jose to the north and east; the City of Campbell to the north; the Cities of Monte Sereno and Saratoga to the west; and unincorporated County of Santa Clara and the County of Santa Cruz to the south.
The Los Gatos Planning Area is made up of a wide variety of terrain, ranging from flat topography at the edge of the valley floor to densely wooded hillsides. Both the valley and hillsides are interspersed with creeks, streams and riparian habitat. The sharp contrast between the valley floor and the hillsides provides the Town’s picturesque background.
Los Gatos prides itself as a self contained community. Over 3,000 businesses serve the residents and act as a destination point for visitors who are attracted to its restaurants, hotels and variety of shops within a pedestrian oriented downtown setting. The Town is also an inclusive community with the full mix of ages, family sizes and incomes.
Los Gatos boasts of many parks and greenbelt areas, as well as a vibrant downtown area. Downtown Los Gatos is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is the model of what communities strive to achieve in a downtown.
It’s necessary to state that the primary public high schools serving Camarillo are Adolfo Camarillo High School in Mission Oaks, Rio Mesa High School in Strickland between Oxnard and Camarillo, and Rancho Campana High School near the intersection of Lewis Road and Las Posas Road. These high schools are all part of the Oxnard Union High School District.
The Boys and Girls Club of Camarillo has been established since 1967. Report has it that this Club serves close to 400 kids per day and is mainly funded by donations from the Community. A good number of sports leagues, including adult leagues, such as baseball, basketball, football, and the largest AYSO soccer league west of the Mississippi are located in Camarillo.
Also note that all types of crime committed in the city is far below the national average. CAT operates one scheduled bus line on Monday through Friday within Camarillo, and Dial-A-Ride services for the disabled on Monday through Saturday.
- Palo Alto
This city is more than 100 years old, and is named after a majestic 1000 (not 250) year old coastal redwood tree along San Francisquito Creek, where early Spanish explorers settled. Note that the blend of business and residential areas brought together by a vibrant downtown defines Palo Alto’s unique character.
A charming mixture of old and new, Palo Alto’s tree-lined streets and historic buildings reflect its California heritage. Also, Palo Alto is renowned worldwide as a leader in cutting-edge technological development. This exciting mix of tradition and innovation makes Palo Alto an extraordinary place to operate a business and grow a family.
Unique among California cities, Palo Alto is a full-service municipality that owns and operates its gas, electric, water, sewer, refuse and storm drainage services at very competitive rates for its customers. Palo Alto is strategically located and easily accessible to major surface routes. Air transportation is easily accessible by bus, automobile or shuttle service to San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland international airports.
Within the City, commuter rail transportation is conveniently located and the Palo Alto stop is one of the most used in the Caltrain system. Alternative transportation options include numerous bike paths throughout the City and an internal shuttle service is also available.
Folsom Cordova Unified School District operates public schools. The 3 high schools are Folsom High School, Vista del Lago High School, and Cordova High School. The 4 middle schools are Folsom Middle School, Sutter Middle School, Mills Middle School, and Mitchell Middle School.
The city also boasts of the Folsom Public Library, located in the Georgia Murray Building. Folsom, according to reports, has a very low crime rate, a majority of which are property crimes. The FBI’s Uniformed Crime Report consistently shows Folsom as one of the lowest crime rates in the State of California.
Both the Folsom Police Department and Folsom Fire Department utilize Nixle.com, Facebook, and Twitter to keep residents and business owners informed of emergencies and crime trends. The median home price in Folsom, CA is $624,000 with the average household income at $102,692.
- San Marino
San Marino lies southeast of Pasadena. In 1903 the American railroad magnate Henry E. Huntington bought the San Marino Ranch and established the community. His estate, deeded to the public, includes the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens.
The library houses rare English and American literary and historical collections, including a Gutenberg Bible; the art gallery displays Thomas Gainsborough’s Blue Boy and Sir Thomas Lawrence’s Pinkie, among other works; and the gardens contain specimens of unusual flora. Another popular local attraction is Lacy Park, which contains extensive green space and hosts outdoor concerts.
- Mission Viejo
Primarily suburban in nature and culture, Mission Viejo consists of residential property, although there are a number of offices and businesses within the limits of the city. The city is known for its tree-lined neighborhoods, receiving recognition from the National Arbor Day Foundation.
Mission Viejo is considered one of the largest master-planned communities ever built under a single project in the united states. The average household size remains 2.84 and the average family size was 3.22.
According to statistics, age distribution was 27.1 percent under the age of 18, 6.6 percent from 18 to 24, 30.5 percent from 25 to 44, 24.9 percent from 45 to 64, and 10.9 percent who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 95.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.7 males.
Note that the median household income was $93,330, and the median family income was $113,439. Males had a median income of $74,703 versus $53,196 for females. The per capita income for the city was $41,459. 1.9 percent of families and 4.4 percent of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.1 percent of those under age 18 and 6 percent of those age 65 or over.
Torrance boasts of a moderate year-round climate with warm temperatures, daily sea breezes, low humidity, and an average rainfall of 12.55 inches per year. This residential and light high-tech industrial city has 90,000 street trees and 30 city parks. Known for its low crime rates, the city consistently ranks among the safest cities in Los Angeles County.
The Torrance Unified School district operates 17 elementary schools, eight middle schools, five high schools (one of which is a continuation school), three adult education centers, and a child development center. Torrance Police Department provides 24-hour law enforcement coverage to the city. The department is broken down into four major divisions, each with its own subdivisions.
There are two major hospitals in Torrance: Torrance Memorial Medical Center and Little Company of Mary Hospital. A third hospital, Los Angeles County Department of Health Services Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, lies just outside the city limits (in unincorporated West Carson). The Los Angeles County Department of Health Services operates the Torrance Health Center in Harbor Gateway, Los Angeles
According to the city’s 2007–08 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the city’s various funds had $193 million in Revenues, $167 million in expenditures, $179 million in total assets, $56 million in total liabilities, and $140 million in cash in investments.
Moraga boasts of a Mediterranean climate, with warm, dry summers and cool, wet winters. In the summer, morning fog is a common occurrence, but it usually burns off by the late morning or early afternoon, giving way to clear skies the rest of the day. The median income for a household in Moraga is $98,080, and the median income for a family is $116,113.
Males have a median income of $92,815 versus $51,296 for females. The per capita income for the town is $45,437. 2.9 percent of the population and 1.9 percent of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 3.5 percent of those under the age of 18 and 1.0 percent of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.
Moraga is home to the grade schools of Los Perales Elementary, Donald L. Rheem School, Camino Pablo School, and Joaquin Moraga Intermediate School; Campolindo High School; and Saint Mary’s College of California, a private college. In 2011, Moraga was named a top city to live and learn in.
According to a 2016 report, Imperial was the fourth fastest-growing city in the state, gaining 4.1 percent more residents from January 1, 2015 to January 1, 2016. This city compares to Imperial County’s growth of 1.3 percent and Brawley’s growth of 1.2 percent.
The median income for a household in the city was $49,451, and the median income for a family was $53,053. Males had a median income of $37,373 versus $27,778 for females. The per capita income for the city was $16,538. About 8.9 percent of families and 11.6 percent of the population were below the poverty line, including 15.2 percent of those under age 18 and 5.2 percent of those age 65 or over.
There were 4,751 housing units at an average density of 811.2 per square mile (313.2/km²), of which 4,405 were occupied, of which 3,130 (71.1 percent) were owner-occupied, and 1,275 (28.9 percent) were occupied by renters. Homeowner vacancy rate was 4.5 percent; the rental vacancy rate was 4.5 percent.
The FBI has ranked Moorpark as one of California’s safest cities. It was ranked California’s 8th safest city in 2017. No homicides were recorded in 2017 nor 2018. The 2018 FBI Uniform Crime Report reported a near record-low crime level. It is served by Moorpark Unified School District. Numerous schools in Moorpark are scoring above the 75th percentile in California, the top quarter in state.
There were 10,738 housing units at an average density of 839.0 per square mile (323.9/km2), of which 8,182 (78.0 percent) were owner-occupied, and 2,302 (22.0 percent) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.0 percent; the rental vacancy rate was 2.9 percent. 26,688 people (77.5 percent of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 7,733 people (22.5 percent) lived in rental housing units.
The median income for a household in the city is $90,109, and the median income for a family is $96,532. Males have a median income of $55,535 versus $35,790 for females. The per capita income for the city is $25,383. 7.0 percent of the population and 4.3 percent of families are below the poverty line.
California, generally, is a nice place to live but supporting a family can be quite expensive. To help you juggle your finances, it’s advisable you talk to an expert. A financial advisor can help you find an affordable mortgage in any city of your choice and then pay for your home. As you look to your long-term future, an advisor can also help you plan so that you live with comfort and minimal stress.