When you think of San Diego, what springs to mind? Beautiful beaches and palm trees? The gardens and museums of Balboa Park? The historic Gaslamp Quarter?
These are the iconic sights of So Cal’s most beautiful seaside city. But in order to get a full portrait of what it is like to live here, you need answers to your questions about everyday life in San Diego. What are the schools like? What about the crime rates? How can you get around downtown? Cost of living?
Let’s look at the statistics!
San Diego Cost of Living
Cost of living in San Diego is high—but that is par the course in Southern California. Sperling’s Best Places puts the cost of living in SD at 166.00 on an index where 100 represents the US average.
That is reflected mainly in the cost of housing. But transportation, healthcare costs, groceries, and other costs can also be higher here. Utilities tend to be in line with the nationwide average.
California has a sales tax of 7.25%. One important thing about living here though is that state income taxes are low. So, if you are mindful of your spending, you can benefit. Less money going to the tax board means more of your income stays in your bank account and investments.
Schools in San Diego
There is a total of 42 primary and secondary school districts in San Diego. There are 5 college districts. If you wish to send your child to a private school, there are 335 different options to choose from.
Some of the top-rated schools in San Diego include Scripps Ranch High School, Del Norte High School, Willow Grove Elementary School and Scripps Elementary School.
This is a wonderful place for a child to grow up surrounded by diversity as many ethnic groups are represented throughout SD school districts.
In fact, there are 15 ethnic groups in the San Diego Unified School District, which is the state’s second largest school district. This district incorporates 231 schools in all. Other large districts include Poway Unified School District and the San Diego County Office of Education.
San Diego Crime Rates
San Diego isn’t just a wonderful place for kids to go to school—it is also one of the safer cities your children can grow up in.
The San Diego Union Tribute reported just this month that the city’s crime rate is the lowest it has been in 49 years. Between 2016 and 2017, crime rates went down 7%. There have been declines in almost every category.
Getting Around San Diego
Traffic can be intense in San Diego. But if you choose a home in a central location like Mission Valley, you can reach most destinations on the highway fast outside of rush hour.
Public transportation is available through the San Diego Metropolitan Transit System, which operates the trolley. The Blue line connects residents of south San Diego with downtown, while the Orange and Green lines traverse the north and east parts of the city. Between the bus and trolley systems, you can rely 100% on public transit if you wish.
How long will it take you to get to work each day? According to the Census, the mean travel time to work is 25.3 minutes. So, you can probably expect around an hour of commuting each day (as a round trip).
Facts About the Average San Diego Homeowner
The City of San Diego reports that the median income in San Diego for a family of four is $63,400.
The US Census gives a slightly higher number: $66,529. The average individual however earns $32,482.
According to the Census, the median value of homes in San Diego from 2012-2016 was $454,600.
On average, each San Diego household has 2.87 persons. 84.5% of San Diegans are living in the same house today that they were a year ago. 37.5% speak a language other than English at home.
Anything Else You Should Know About Living in San Diego?
I’m not going to beat around the bush. With its cost of living, San Diego does pose some challenges when it comes to settling down and building a life.
But there is a reason the cost of living here is high, and that is that quality of life here is also high.
Where else can you enjoy balmy weather year-round, hit the beach anytime you want, dine on delicious authentic Mexican cuisine, and live in trendy neighborhoods like North Park or Ocean Beach?
On the weekends, you get to visit world-famous destinations like the San Diego Zoo, SeaWorld, Old Town and La Jolla Cove. People travel from around the world to visit San Diego, and you get to live here. I think you’re going to love every minute. Ready to shop for your SD dream home? Call me at 858-337-2582, or start searching for your dream home here, and let’s get started!