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Northern California is quickly becoming the place to be for new college grads, young entrepreneurs, and millennials of all varieties looking for good areas to live, work, hangout, and grow. Northern California, and specifically the San Francisco, San Jose, and the Sacramento metro areas have developed into both national and international hubs of tech entrepreneurship, start-up culture, and a general youth-driven urbanization. Needless to say, the northern part of California represents a truly exciting area that is teeming with not only economic potential and opportunities for its residents, but with tons of natural beauty and endless potential for adventure. Here are some reasons why you should consider moving to California’s better half.
A Growing Scene in Sacramento
It is undeniable that over the past few years, Northern California, and specifically the Bay Area have been undergoing some dramatic changes. The ever-increasing cost of living is causing many to move out of more expensive parts of the region in search of places with more affordable housing and a lower general cost of living. Sacramento is one of those cities. It is a small, but charming city that is experiencing quite a bit of growth and rejuvenation, and for good reason too. The median home value in Sacramento is $313,700, far below the median home value in San Francisco which is at a whopping $1,334,800. Real estate is also generally more spread out than some of the denser cities to the north, making it possible to both live in in or around the city center while also having plenty of space for families, friends, and pets.
Along with a considerably cheaper cost of living, Sacramento is known for its laid back, bohemian, and easy going feel, which for many represent a nice contrast to the hustle and bustle of nearby larger cities. This is in large part due to Sacramento’s smaller (but growing) population, which is just under 500,000. That being said, there are flourishing food, music and art scenes gaining notoriety in Sacramento, no doubt due in part to the influx of people moving in from other areas. Farm-to-fork is really big here, as is the quickly growing live music scene; you will never be too far away from dinner and a show.
Great Neighborhoods in San Jose
San Jose is home to many fantastic neighborhoods that showcase the northern California’s rich diversity and is filled with fantastic things to do that meet everyone’s needs. Downtown San Jose is perfect for those who seek a more walkable, urban vibe. Once, kind of a ghost town, downtown San Jose has been experiencing a revival of sorts as young tech industry workers have begun to move in and breathe more life into the area by creating a demand for luxury lofts, great restaurants and nightlife.
Willow Glen, just south of downtown San Jose, is a cozy tree-lined neighborhood dotted with bungalows and old Spanish stuccos. It is widely known as an upper middle-class neighborhood filled with friendly families and beautiful landscaping. Although it’s only a short distance from denser areas of the city, its shady, walkable streets make it a quiet oasis.
San Jose is also home to one of the nation’s last remaining Japan Towns. Japantown in San Jose is a vibrant and energizing neighborhood that has plenty of farmers markets, boutiques, and restaurants. There are also townhouses and apartments throughout this neighborhood, but whether you are looking to live there or not, it is a great place to hang out and walk around.
An Abundance of Spirit and Opportunity in San Francisco
San Francisco has always been a top destination in the U.S., consistently ranking as one of the most desirable places to live. It is a city rich with cultural history; from being a major hotbed of the hippy and free love movements, to the home of a vast array of ethnic neighborhoods and immigrant enclaves. It has also fostered one of the first LGBT neighborhoods in the country, the Castro District, which served as a springboard for the modern-day LGBT movement. All this is to say, opportunity has always been a fundamental characteristic of San Francisco as a city. San Fran’s “come as you are” mentality and vibe make it a strong magnet for people of all lifestyles and backgrounds; it is a tremendously accepting place where creativity and community have and continue to be easily cultivated.
This tradition is not lost today, as the progressive culture lives on, coupled with an abundance of job sector growth, particularly in the tech industry. San Francisco and its neighbor, Silicon Valley, attract some of the best and brightest in technology and entrepreneurship. Yes, it will be competitive, but aside from being a warm, socially accepting city, it is a place to cut one’s teeth in the job sector. There are an abundance of high paying and high-status jobs, even at the entry level, and there are plenty of opportunities for new entrepreneurs to pitch their ideas to all kinds of investors.
You’re never too far from too much
Part of the beauty of northern California is that, despite its rich diversity of scenery, cities, vibes, and traditions, you are never a few hours away from everything else. Sacramento is a short two-hour drive from the bay area, for example, while San Jose is right next to a handful of beautiful state and county parks. Northern California Is truly the state’s better half and is well worth consideration as a potential place when considering your next move.Read More