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11 of the Best Places To Move To in California in Your 20s
Real Estate

11 of the Best Places To Move To in California in Your 20s

Here's a detailed look into 11 of the best places to move to in California as a young adult depending on your budget and preference.

Roubina Al Abashian


5 min read

December 30, 2021

Starting over in your 20s may seem confusing for some. For others, it’s the exact opposite—new adventures await at every corner. From finishing college and making new friends to moving out of your hometown and landing your first job, every decision made is overwhelming yet completely exciting. When it comes to moving to a new city, California has options for days; some are more affordable than others, some are pretty busy, and others are all about the good life. If you’re not sure where the best place to move to in the Golden State is, we’re here to help you out. 

Roseville in Placer County is one of the best places to live in California, offering residents a dense suburban feel with plenty of amenities.

1. Roseville

Median home price: $625,490

When moving to a new city, most people take a few things into consideration, growth rate being one of the most important factors. Roseville is regarded as one of the fastest-growing cities in the Golden State; it’s also one of the most affordable places to live. This Placer County city is home to extension campuses of Brandman University and Sierra College. Most people who come here for education end up staying for the comfortable lifestyle. While Roseville boasts a small-town way of living, it’s also close to big cities like Sacramento and San Francisco. 

2. Sacramento

Median home price: $516,790

Looking for a cheap place to live with high quality of life and job opportunities galore? Sactown provides the best of California, and it comes with an affordable price tag. Here, you won’t need to sacrifice anything for basic amenities. With so many family-friendly attractions, a plethora of outdoor activities, and countless riverfront restaurants, Sacramento is a bustling city that caters to people in their 20s. As one of the cheapest places to live in NorCal, the state capital is the new beginning you’ve been looking for.

UC Davis has a dominant influence on the social and cultural life of Davis, the most populous city in Yolo County.

3. Davis

Median home price: $831,570

Recently, Davis has been growing in popularity as the next tech hub—some even call it the more affordable version of Silicon Valley with equally attractive opportunities and much lower rents. The college town attracts students and keeps them hooked long after graduation. With a booming art scene, an abundance of outdoor recreation, and plenty of prospects to look forward to, Davis is one of the coolest cities in California to move to.

UC Berkeley is noted for its prestigious engineering, natural science, and social science programs, as well as for its top 10 graduate programs.

4. Berkeley

Median home price: $1,586,270

Every twenty-something has at some point dreamt of moving to Berkeley. The San Francisco suburb is the educational hub of California, attracting young adults like a magnet. With a rise in job opportunities—especially in education—Berkeley is every ambitious young professional's dream home. Despite the city getting crowded by the minute and real estate prices on the rise, it’s still not too late to make the move.

5. San Jose

Median home price: $1,303,422

Young adults passionate about their careers find San Jose to be the best city to move to start a new life. While it’s not exactly the cheapest option, the job prospects are so high and the neighborhoods are some of the best in the state to doubt your decision. Silicon Valley’s cultural, economic, and political center is known as one of California’s best cities for tech jobs, convincing young adults that the future starts here.

Santa Monica has advanced significantly since the 1980s by revitalizing its downtown, job opportunities, and tourism.

6. Santa Monica 

Median home price: $1,838,170

If you lead an eco-friendly lifestyle and are an avid environmentalist, Santa Monica is your go-to California city. The city is as green as it gets—it’s even expected that 100 percent of Santa Monica will be fully relying on renewable sources by 2030. Here, you’ll get to enjoy your favorite outdoor activities; some of the best beaches and hiking trails are found right here. Even though life might be a little pricey here, the perks are well worth your money.  

7. Los Angeles 

Median home price: $913,750

The Entertainment Capital of the World is where many young talents head, hoping for their big break. We’re not surprised at all; the City of Angels is known for welcoming aspiring actors, musicians, entrepreneurs—no matter your goals, you’ll make them come true here. And when you’re not working, there are so many fun things to do and outdoor activities to engage in, making L.A. one of the best cities to move to in your 20s.

As the seventh most populous city in the state, Long Beach has several attractions that lure in tourists in big numbers.

8. Long Beach

Median home price: $761,090

Long Beach catches the attention of every young adult looking for places to live in California. With a strong job market, great outdoors, vibrant downtown, and unique art scene, the city marks itself as one of the coolest places to move to. Not to mention, it’s one of the more affordable cities in Los Angeles County. 

9. Orange

Median home price: $905,620

Orange is the laid-back community most young adults dream of. Just a 40-minute ride from Los Angeles, the city is considered one of the best places to live in the Golden State. Nature lovers consider this place to be their definition of paradise—hiking, biking, and camping can easily be part of your plans every weekend. It’s no wonder that a quarter of the population in Orange are between the ages of 24 and 35; this place was practically built for young adults.  

Huntington Beach sits above a large natural fault structure containing oil, which provides significant local income.

10. Huntington Beach

Median home price: $1,091,510

Aspiring professionals with a love for the outdoors find themselves heading towards Huntington Beach. After all, they’re hoping to move to a place where the surfing scene is unmatched, they'll have plenty to do during the week, and find the ideal job in no time. With a perfect climate and almost 10 miles of shoreline, Huntington Beach is calling us to get a beach house and move there ASAP. 

11. San Diego

Median home price: $864,660

San Diego is all about non-stop fun. Want to splash around? Paddleboarding, surfing, kayaking, and swimming are the first things that come to mind. But the year-long sunshine isn’t the only thing that makes San Diego one of the best cities to move to—affordability, top-notch education, and entertainment opportunities play a major role in attracting people. Keep an eye out on the housing market and don’t hesitate to make the move. 

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