The good news is if you can’t afford one of the pricier ZIP codes, there are plenty of affordable alternatives available for those who want to buy a home in California. Let’s see the most expensive California ZIP codes and six affordable alternatives.
Atherton, San Francisco Metropolitan Area: 94027
- Typical home value in 2023: $7.36 million
Beverly Hills, California: 90210
- Typical home value in 2023: $5.11 million
Los Altos Hills, California: 94022
- Typical home value in 2023: $4.26 million
Santa Monica, California: 90402
- Typical home value in 2023: $4.17 million
Montecito, California: 93108
- Typical home value in 2023: $3.94 million
Rancho Santa Fe, San Diego Metropolitan Area: 92067
- Typical home value in 2023: $3.9 million
Newport Beach, California: 92657
- Typical home value in 2023: $3.86 million
Affordable ZIP Code Alternatives in California
Now that you’ve seen which ZIP codes are the most expensive in California, here are some inexpensive cities for first-time homebuyers to check out.
Santa Clarita, California: 91321
Efraim Oren, founder of Professional Mortgage Associates, said while homes in Santa Clarita have slightly gone up in price, this city is still a fantastic choice for first-time homebuyers.
“Santa Clarita has always been safe and clean, and now the city is experiencing an increase in the amount of homes and apartments being built,” Oren said.
Agoura Hills, California: 91301
Buyers who want to be close to Los Angeles and Ventura may move to Agoura Hills for the best of both worlds.
“Agoura Hills is a beautiful location with several parks, hiking trails and recreational activities, which makes it an attractive choice for homeowners,” Oren said. “It’s only a 25-to-30-minute commute to both Ventura and Los Angeles, which is great if you want to be close to major metropolitan areas.”
Barstow, California: 92311
Pete Evering, business development manager at Utopia Property Management, said Barstow, in San Bernardino County, is a reasonably priced city to consider moving to. The median home price is roughly $159,000 and the cost of living is cheaper compared to other California cities.
Clearlake, California: 95422
Clearlake is a Lake County town known for its inexpensive housing.
The median home price is roughly $160,000, making it more affordable for new homeowners to buy. Evering adds the Clearlake community has lower costs of living than other California cities, meaning residents can save money on necessities like housing, groceries and utilities.
Crescent City, California: 95531
In Realtor.com’s 10 most affordable beach towns for homebuyers report, Crescent City ranked at No. 9 on the list.
Located 20 miles south of the Oregon border, Crescent City is the northernmost location of any beach town on Realtor’s list for 2023. According to a Realtor representative, the median price within 1 mile of a beach is $329,000. The median price per square foot within 1 mile of a beach is $248.
Riverside, California: 92501
“There’s lots of migration from Los Angeles, which is due to a combination of the price point being less than LA County and people realizing they can get much more per dollar if they move further outside the city center,” Hardy said.
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