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These Are the Wealthiest Towns in California
Real Estate

These Are the Wealthiest Towns in California

Curious to know if your knowledge of the wealthiest towns in California is up to par? We broke them down for you.

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5 min read

July 30, 2021

Killer views, breathtaking architecture, world-class education, privacy, safety… that’s how you steal a wealthy person’s heart—that is, if you’re a resident of these rich areas, of course—and California has them all.

The Golden State is all about luxury, opulence, and beauty. These rich cities and towns are some of the most affluent in the U.S., which in turn are home to some of the wealthiest people in the world. Curious to know if your knowledge of the wealthiest towns in California is up to par? We broke them down for you.

Wealthiest Towns in Northern California

Hillsborough is located on the Rancho San Mateo Mexican land grant which was purchased by William Davis Merry Howard in 1846.

Hillsborough

Median household income: $430,681

Median home price: $5,005,560

What brings the wealthiest of the wealthy to Hillsborough, you ask? The charm and splendor, of course. Located in San Mateo County, the town has managed to preserve its natural beauty over the years and offers magnificent views of San Francisco Bay. But that’s not all. Hillsborough is home to top-notch schools, making it a magnet for affluent families.

As one of the richest areas in California, Hillsborough is also one of the safest. Here, the minimum lot size one can purchase is one and a half acres, giving property owners all the privacy they need while keeping the town green. 

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Atherton

Median household income: $525,324

Median home price: $7,225,151

Welcome to the second most expensive ZIP code in the United States—San Mateo County’s Atherton. This town is 20 minutes away from the headquarters of Facebook, Google, Tesla, and plenty of other high-tech companies. Lavish mansions line the streets of the richest town in California, each worth millions of dollars. The landscaping and fences surrounding the home prevent curious eyes from seeing much. 

Tech billionaires like Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg used to own a home here; former Google CEO Eric Schmidt calls Atherton his home. If you’re wealthy enough to purchase a home here, Golden State Warriors Stephen Curry just might be your neighbor.

The Los Altos Hills ZIP code appeared on the 2017 Forbes list of America's most expensive ZIP codes; it was ranked the third in the country.

Los Altos Hills 

Median household income: $405,073

Median home price: $4,957,609

Los Altos Hills might’ve lost the title of “Wealthiest Town in the U.S.” to Atherton, but the town is still one of the most desirable places to live in California. The Silicon Valley residential community hasn’t lost its rural feel despite the fact it's currently the fourth richest town in the country.

Like most other wealthy cities in California, Los Altos Hills attracts people with high-quality education—84 percent of all adults living in the area have at least a Bachelor’s degree. Los Altos Hills has managed to capture the attention of Google CEO Sundar Pichai, who moved to the town in 2016. 

Rich Cities in Southern California

Hidden Hills is located next to the city of Calabasas and is notable for being home to many actors and celebrities.

Hidden Hills

Median household income: $246,042

Median home price: $4,012,212

Hidden Hills—the only hill we want to hide in Los Angeles County. Surrounded by hundreds of luxurious estates, this rich city in SoCal is where children can run freely on the streets without having to worry about cars. 

Sitting between the western foothills of the San Fernando Valley and Ventura County, this gated community has managed to secure a certain lifestyle slowly vanishing from surrounding areas—the simple suburban lifestyle. Add that to the privacy and security Hidden Hills provides and you have a formula that drives celebrities like the Kardashian-Jenners and Drake into purchasing homes in one of the richest areas in California.

Malibu is known for being the home of Hollywood movie stars, people in the entertainment industry, and other affluent residents.

Malibu 

Median household income: $275,675

Median home price: $3,693,443

Malibu—the coastal paradise that the rich and famous can’t get enough of—has been on the list of richest cities in California for a long time now. While many homeowners are permanent residents, roughly half of the houses are secondary properties.

What’s unique about the ‘Bu is the diversity in architectural designs. You can easily see a ranch-style house right next to a contemporary house—and they both look like they belong there! 

However, the real perks of owning a house in Malibu is undoubtedly the beaches. The 23-mile long shoreline is where you can surf, swim, play volleyball, and sunbathe. 

Should you ever decide to settle down in Malibu, you might run into Robert Downey Jr., Lady Gaga, and Leonardo DiCaprio. But if you’re not wealthy enough to make the move, a weekend getaway just might be the solution to cure your FOMO. 

It’s easy to see why Beverly Hills is the most filmed city in the world—it represents glamour, film, fashion, and L.A. history.

Beverly Hills

Median household income: $106,936

Median home price: $3,757,845

If Malibu is a coastal paradise, then Beverly Hills is a shopaholic’s heaven. Rodeo Drive has been the go-to for A-listed for decades, some of whom ended up calling Beverly Hills home. But high-end boutiques aren't the only reason why this city attracts the wealthy.

Beverly Hills is covered in lush green parks, beautiful scenery, mind-blowing architecture, luxury hotels, and interesting history. Residents here are guaranteed safety and security—schools in the area rank high, encouraging families to make the move to the city.

Over the years, Beverly Hills’ charm has lured in enough celebrities that many of them decided to make this rich city their home—Taylor Swift, Jennifer Lawrence, and Ryan Seacrest, to name a few. 

With a median home price of $2,699,098, San Marino is one of the most expensive and exclusive neighborhoods in the Los Angeles area.

San Marino

Median household income: $166,607

Median home price: $2,481,827

Situated in the San Gabriel Valley, San Marino is one of those lavish yet low-key areas that affluent and well-off families choose to live in. English and Spanish-style houses line the residential city, adding more glamour and charisma to the area.

Change is not exactly welcome in San Marino, because authorities worry that even minor alterations could erase a part of the city’s history. And to guarantee this, residents are required to notify authorities about any changes they plan on doing to their homes. Despite the strict rules, property prices keep increasing, and San Marino continues to draw in the wealthy and the powerful.

Did we mention that San Marino is where you can get your fix of art and culture? The residential city is home to the Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens, housing an impressive art collection with a focus on 18th and 19th-century European, as well as 17th to mid-20th-century American art. There’s seriously a lot to love about San Marino; a woman can dream...

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