If out-of-control Bay Area real estate prices are getting you down, you’ve probably looked into relocating to other cities like Denver, Seattle, and Portland. It turns out, you might not need to go too far to get the less expensive city vibe you’re after. Sacramento is booming with affordable housing and more residents than ever. Also, it’s just a few hours from San Francisco, so you’ll still have access to everything the Bay has to offer. Before you start packing, there are a few things you should know, though. Here’s what to expect. 

You Won’t Be Alone

Crowd in new Downtown Commons neighborhood

Affectionately referred to as the “last affordable frontier” around the pricey Bay Area, families, remote workers, businesses, and tech companies are flocking to Sacramento in record numbers. In fact, Sacramento was named the fastest growing city in California in 2017 after seeing a 1.4 percent increase in population in 2016

Apple employees are among some of the city’s new residents due to the company’s Elk Grove campus which serves as a logistics center. In 2015, the company announced plans for a major $13 million renovation which will increase jobs at the location. 

Housing Prices Are Rising But Remain Relatively Affordable

Typical Homes in Midtown

With all the attention Sacramento is getting, plus the growing population, you’d expect housing prices to rise. Luckily, it's still relatively affordable, at least compared to the San Francisco area. 

A median-priced home in Sacramento is going for $330,000, making the city a strong option for relocation if you are hoping to own a home at some point. Of course, if you’ve got money to spend after your startup sells, homes in the Sacramento area can be found going into the millions, especially in desirable neighborhoods like Sierra Oaks and Arden Arcade (which includes Arden Oaks, Arden Oaks Vista, Arden Manor, and Arden Parks Vista)

Location, Location, Location

Lake Tahoe

Sacramento is arguably situated in an ideal location. It’s only a two-hour drive from Lake Tahoe and all the summer waterfront sports, winter skiing, and other outdoor activities you could want. You have the American River Parkway in the city, plus you can get to the ocean in just two hours. Sacramento International Airport is also easy to get to and allows you to catch flights to many West Coast cities, plus Mexico and Hawaii.

No Need for Dressy Attire Here

Midtown in Sacramento, CA

Sacramento is still known for its casual style, and you’ll see laid-back looks everywhere you go (unless perhaps you work for the state government, that is.) To stock up on local attire that’s appropriate for your new digs, head to some of the boutiques in Midtown, like Quality Boutique and Bru, which is also a coffee shop or Identity Boutique where you’ll find plenty of cut-offs and ripped jeans. 

It’s the Perfect Time to Go

The Golden One Center

When the Oscar-nominated movie, Lady Bird hit screens last year, it really put Sacramento on the map, so they say. There was actually a lot going for Sacramento prior to that, though. The city has the newly built Golden 1 Center where the Sacramento Kings play, plus hosts a hotel, retail stores, and condos. There are new developments announced all the time. So whether you’re a Lady Bird fan, basketball fan, or just looking for a family-friendly escape from San Francisco, it might be the right time to make Sacramento your home.