The list, using data from Movoto by OJO, took into account each city’s median sold price for homes and the broader metropolitan area’s median household income to determine an affordability score.
An exclusive study conducted by Livability.com informed this list. In the study, more than 1,000 American adults, aged 18 and up and from across the country, were surveyed to determine the characteristics of livability they would value in a prospective home community with an emphasis on how rising costs are affecting their relocation decisions. Respondents were asked which factors would be most heavily considered when choosing to relocate and how their housing needs and priorities have changed due to inflation. The research shows that 7 in 10 adults consider affordability to be a top three factor influencing a decision to relocate.
The Most Affordable Cities on the West Coast broadly reflects the findings that affordability and local amenities are top priorities for people looking to relocate.
“People are thinking about where their money goes the farthest right now, as remote work continues for many, and affordability is harder to find,” says Amanda Ellis, Livability.com Editor in Chief. “We highlight the amazing small and mid-sized communities across the U.S. and it’s often these who stand out when it comes to offering affordability alongside amenities and opportunity.”
Livability.com’s Most Affordable Cities on the West Coast are:
- Victorville, CA
- Tacoma, WA
- Olympia, WA
- Lancaster, CA
- Sacramento, CA
- Spokane, WA
- Vancouver, WA
- Concord, CA
- Medford, OR
- Brentwood, CA
- Portland, OR
- Hayward, CA
- Bend, OR
- Oakland, CA
The complete list of the Most Affordable Cities on the West Coast is featured on Livability.com, along with some of the specific attractions, activities and amenities that make each place a great place to live.
Here is what they said:
In the hyper-expensive California Bay Area, Brentwood stands out as a (relatively) affordable place to live in the East Bay. Home prices here are around $850,000, but they’re offset by competitive salaries from top Contra Costa County employers like Chevron and Bio-Rad Laboratories (plus other companies in the broader Bay Area region). Brentwood is small, with around 65,000 residents, but it packs a punch with many city parks, the Brentwood Golf Club and easy access to nearby Marsh Creek State Historic Park and Round Valley Regional Preserve (not to mention great views of Mount Diablo).
Brentwood’s mild weather (perfect for playing outside after school!) and many newly built residential subdivisions make it a top choice for families with little ones. Brentwood also has a year-round farmers market on Saturdays, plus many local “U-pick” farms and roadside stands brimming with fresh produce.
If you’ve always dreamed of living in the Bay Area but just didn’t think you could afford it, give Concord another look. This mid-sized city, located 42 miles northeast of San Francisco, offers many of the same amenities, activities and benefits of the Golden City, but at a much more affordable price point. Median home values are around $700,000 (compared to $1.5 million in San Francisco), and you get a little extra breathing room, too.
Though plenty of people commute, Concord has its own strong economy, thanks to large employers like BevMo, John Muir Health, Wells Fargo, Kyocera and Akesis. After work, Concord residents can hit the hiking trails at nearby Diablo State Park, hit a few balls at the driving range of Buchanan Fields Golf Club or work up a sweat while pedaling along the Iron Horse Regional Trail. Concord also has a thriving local arts scene, ranging from comic book shops to art galleries to live theater, dance and music performances.
Livability.com highlights the best small to mid-sized cities and what makes them great places to live, work and visit. Through exclusive research and original content, we examine issues such as affordability, cultural amenities and talent attraction, and celebrate the accomplishments of these cities through lists, our annual ranking of the Top 100 Best Places to Live and articles exploring the who, what, why and how behind the “where.” Livability.com is a division of Journal Communications, Inc., based in Franklin, TN.