10 Affordable Places to Live in California

Updated at : 08 Apr, 2024

California is a state of mind more than it is a physical location. The Golden State provides a wide variety of lifestyles and scenery, from its sun-kissed beaches to its enormous vineyards and busy towns. But because of its immensity, it can be difficult to choose the ideal place to call home. I've put up this list on the greatest areas to live in California to assist you in making your decision.

I can vouch for California's extreme beauty and diversity having traveled the state frequently over the years. California offers unparalleled diversity, ranging from the untamed cliffs of Big Sur to the tranquil wineries of Napa Valley, and from the tech hubs of Silicon Valley to the laid-back beach vibes of San Diego. There's a part of California that seems to be designed just for you, whether you're drawn to the laid-back surf culture, the romance of wine country, or the vibrant pulse of cities like LA and San Francisco.

But where should one begin? Everybody has a different ideal location. For many, the cost of living is a deciding issue; for others, access to the beach is important, and yet others search for prestigious schools.

California's Best Places to Live

Are you eager to discover California's most lovely places to call home? California, a state in the United States on the West Coast, has something to offer everyone. Discover the best places to live in the Golden State by reading on.

Are you trying to find the perfect California home? California offers locations that suit your needs, whether you want to live near the ocean or in a city. The following are the communities and locations you should be aware of if you plan to live in California:

1. Fresno

Fresno is beautiful. Here's proof. | by Mike McPhate | The California Sun

Yes, the Central Valley is the agricultural hub of California. In the middle of this lush region is Fresno, a city with a lot to offer that is sometimes disregarded. It's an excellent spot to reside in California for people who want a balanced lifestyle because it blends urban and rural areas.

Because of its farm-to-table eateries that sell the freshest vegetables imaginable, Fresno is a hotspot for foodies. Imagine the sensation of sunshine-like flavor when you bite into a luscious peach. You may work off that mouthwatering dinner at the gorgeous Woodward Park, which is located in the city.

2. Los Angeles

Imagine the Hollywood sign towering over the horizon, waves from the Pacific Ocean crashing onto the beach, and palm trees billowing in the wind. Greetings from Los Angeles, a city known for its diversity and iconic appeal. It's among the greatest places to live in California, particularly for those who want to pursue ambitious goals and even more daring experiences.

This city's entertainment sector is its lifeblood. LA is the place to be if you're a scriptwriter with a tale to tell, an aspiring actor, or a fledgling filmmaker. The city draws people from all walks of life because it is a melting pot of creativity, ambition, and ability.

3. The Modesto

Do you know who Modesto is? If not, you're passing up one of the best-kept secrets in California. For those who want the conveniences of a big city but with the feel of a little town, this quaint Central Valley community is the greatest location to live in California.

Modesto is a family-friendly paradise. It's a great area with lots of parks, nice neighbors, and top-notch schools for raising children. The Gallo Center for the Arts, which hosts both local and Broadway performances, is another attraction in the city.

4. Sacramento

The Best and Fun Things to Do in Sacramento, California - Bon Traveler

Ah, the place where modernism and history meet to form the government of California. Despite being one of the greatest places to live in California, Sacramento is frequently eclipsed by its more glamorous siblings, Los Angeles and San Francisco. This city is much more than just political activity, I assure you.

With its truly authentic farm-to-fork movement, Sacramento is a food lover's paradise. Midtown, the city's center for foodies, has everything from gourmet sushi restaurants to artisanal coffee shops. Your palette will be grateful that you relocated here.

5. The Salinas

Have you ever wondered where your vegetables is grown fresh? It most likely hails from Salinas, one of the most hippest cities in California in addition to being a major agricultural hub. Salinas, which is situated in the picturesque Monterey County, has a special fusion of city conveniences with rustic charm.

The city is a literary enthusiast's dream come true because it is the birthplace of Nobel laureate John Steinbeck. The National Steinbeck Center, which provides an in-depth look into the author's life and works, is a must-see. The Western Stage presents excellent theatrical productions that are sure to enthrall art lovers.

6. San Diego

Imagine waking up practically every day to weather in the seventies. That is life in San Diego, a city renowned for both its relaxed way of life and its ideal climate. If you enjoy long summers and outdoor activities, it's among the greatest areas of California to reside.

With beaches like Pacific Beach, which has some of the greatest waves in the state, and La Jolla, one of the top beach communities in California, San Diego is a traveler's heaven, especially for surfers. But the city is a paradise for lovers of craft beer as well, so it's not just about the surf. There are more than 150 breweries, so a nice, refreshing pint is always around.

7. The City of San Francisco

San Francisco Travel | Official Visitor Information

Ahh, the city by the harbor, where the Golden Gate Bridge illuminates the sky and cable cars ascend halfway to the stars. San Francisco is one of the greatest places to live in California and a city full of opportunities. It's a location where innovation and tradition converge, producing an absolutely amazing outcome.

A food lover's paradise is San Francisco's culinary scene. Your taste buds will be traveling the world, stopping at Chinatown's dim sum restaurants and North Beach's Italian restaurants. Not to mention the sourdough bread, which is a staple in the area and will have you wanting more long after you leave.

8. San Jose

San Jose, the center of Silicon Valley, is a forward-thinking city where you can step into the future. If you enjoy technology, innovation, and a fast-paced lifestyle, this is one of the best places in California to live in.

The city of San Jose is always changing. It's a center of ambition and creativity, home to both startups reshaping the future and cutting edge tech companies. Additionally, the city provides a variety of career chances in other areas, so it's not simply for tech-savvy people.

9. Santa Barbara

Imagine a location where the sea meets the mountains, the streets are lined with beautiful Spanish buildings, and the wine flows effortlessly. Greetings from Santa Barbara, a coastal haven that ranks among the greatest places to live in California if you're looking for a town that combines rich cultural diversity with scenic beauty.

Santa Barbara is a wilderness lover's paradise. There's always adventure nearby, whether it's climbing in the Santa Ynez Mountains or surfing at Rincon Point. The city's many bike-friendly streets and trails make it an ideal destination for cyclists.

10. Santa Rosa

10 Things to Know Before Moving to Santa Rosa, CA - 2024

Has there ever been a desire to live close to renowned vineyards? That dream comes true thanks to Santa Rosa. Living in California is fantastic, particularly if you enjoy good wine and beautiful scenery.

As the center of Sonoma County, Santa Rosa is a popular destination for wine lovers. There are more than 400 wineries all around the city, providing countless chances for wine tasting and vineyard tours. It's not all about the grapes, though; the local breweries are producing a wide range of distinctive mixes, and the craft beer movement is flourishing as well.

Is California still a decent place to live?

Yes, there are still a lot of wonderful places to live that provide a fantastic quality of life, top-notch schools, and employment prospects despite the high cost of living in some cities. Cities with a variety of lifestyle options to meet different demands are Santa Rosa, Vallejo, and Fairfield.

Is living in California reasonably priced?

In California, affordability varies from place to place. Cities like Santa Barbara and San Francisco can be pricey, but Visalia and Modesto are more reasonably priced. It's critical to take into account your income level and the things you're ready to give up, such conveniences or travel time.