9 Out of 10 of the Priciest Real Estate Markets in the Country Are in California

There is so much that attracts people by the hoards to California. From the climate, to the cultural diversity, to the employment opportunities, California certainly has a lot to offer. With such popularity, it’s no wonder that housing prices in many communities throughout the state are comparably more expensive than other parts of the country.

But some areas are more expensive than others. In fact, according to a recent report, 9 out of 10 of the most expensive real estate markets are located right here in Cali. 

Have a look at the top ten priciest markets in the US based on the median listing price of homes of similar size, and you’ll quickly notice that just about all can be found in the Golden State.


10. Redwood City, CA

Situated smack dab in the middle of San Francisco and San Jose, Redwood City dropped a little bit on this list. In 2014, they were listed as the 4th most expensive housing market in the US, and this year, it’s tumbled a bit to #10. It’s a great spot to call home, with employment opportunities running rampant. Techie conglomerates like EA and Oracle have planted roots in Redwood City, where the average listing price for an average house is tacked at $1.36 million.

9. Orono, MN

Don’t get comfortable with a market outside California on this list, because it’s the only one you’ll see. Orono is a quaint little town located on the glistening waters of Lake Minnetonka in Minnesota. But don’t let the small size and population of 8,000 fool you. Orono boasts some of the most expensive properties in the country. With a median household income of just over $68,000, homeowners can certainly afford the average listing price of $1.38 million.

8. Sunnyvale, CA

Redwood City isn’t the only Californian area that centralizes tech-based companies. Sunnyvale – which happens to be located in the tech-heavy area of Silicon Valley – also has its fair share of these firms, including the likes of Yahoo, Juniper Networks and Fortinet. With giants like these paying decent salaries to area residents, it’s really no surprise that the average home here is listed at $1.45 million.

7. San Mateo, CA

Another Silicon Valley area listed here is San Mateo, which inched its way from the 9th priciest city in the country to 7th this year. It’s conveniently located near both San Fran and San Jose in the high-tech hub of Silicon Valley, and is one of the bigger suburbs on the San Fran Peninsula. The commute into work is an easy one for area residents, who pay a median price of $1.46 million for the average home.

6. Arcadia, CA

Located north-east of LA, Arcadia residents have the privilege of earning a handsome household income of nearly $81,000 annually. They’ll need a sizeable income in order to help them pay for the average home, which rings in at $1.54 million on average. Arcadia – which is named after the city of the same name in Greece – was ranked one of the “Best Places to Raise Your Kids” by Bloomberg. The city’s Upper Rancho neighborhood was listed as the 23rd richest community in Southern California by Business Insider in 2014.

5. Los Gatos, CA

A theme appears to have solidified on this list. It seems as though tech giants and expensive housing markets go hand-in-hand, as #5 on this list goes to yet another Californian city with a heavy tech influence. San Gatos is located within the San Francisco Bay area, with tech titans like Netflix calling it home. As the average home price increases, so does the median household income. In San Gatos, area residents can use their average income of about $130,000 to put towards a median price of $1.57 million for the average house.

4. Cupertino, CA

Continuing on with the tech-slash-expensive-market theme is #4 on this list, which goes to Cupertino. Located in the hub of Silicon Valley, Cupertino is home to none other than Apple’s international headquarters. The median household income in the area is just over $127,000, and the average listing price for a property is $1.66 million..

3. Saratoga, CA

Rounding off the top 3 on this list is Saratoga, which is also located in Silicon Valley and boasts a median price of $1.98 million for the average home. This area is keeping steady on this list – it also made #3 for the last three years. Saratoga is tucked neatly within the gorgeous Santa Cruz Mountains, and boasts a unique combination of big-city amenities with a small-town feel. It offers those who need to be close to work in Silicon Valley with a quiet escape at the end of the day.

2. Palo Alto, CA

If Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg himself calls Palo Alto home, you can just imagine how expensive the homes are in this city. Mr. Z isn’t the only tech exec to plant some roots here – Tumblr founder David Karp and Google CEO Larry Page also lay their heads at night in Palo Alto. There’s something about the glory of California that’s attracting tech gurus of all sorts. The median price for an average house in Palo Alto currently clocks in at $2.06 million.

1. Newport Beach, CA

And the winner is . . . Newport Beach. This stunning beachside town in Orange County is always making an appearance on this list, and for good reason. Outdoor enthusiasts can revel in all its the bike trails, surfing, and sailing. Wine lovers can use up all their free time to sample a few reds and whites among all the area’s wineries, and the sophisticated type can enjoy the plethora of boutique shopping and yacht adventures. The average listing price in Newport Beach stands at $2.29 million. In fact, Newport Beach is more than 7 times the national average! 


And there you have it, folks. There’s definitely a lot of cash flowing in California, which is reflected on the expensive housing markets in the state. Plenty of wealthy techies currently call this southern state home, which is certainly helping to fuel housing prices here. And the sheer beauty of California cities coupled with the bustling tech sector is fueling California’s takeover of the most expensive communities the US.

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