Nelson, Home Buyer in Santa Cruz, CA

A great, safe, pretty place for a young blue collar family.

Asked by Nelson, Santa Cruz, CA Sat Jan 12, 2008

My daughter's family has been living in Santa Cruz county but they are selling to relocate to a place in CA where they can live with a very nice home for under $350,000. They have family in Springfield, OR but they'd rather stay in CA. They'd like us to move nearby and we could stand to downsize and save on the mortgage. Where is a good place for them in CA where the home market is great, but there's no big gang/crime problem, and they are not a minority as Caucasians and the schools are not horrible. Any advice? He's been a butcher but may like a change. Job market needs to be okay. We've been looking into Stockton, Tracy, etc., for them, but thre must be other places.

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Paseo Robles is very nice. The wine industry is growing by leaps & bounds. Southern Montery County is relatively inexpensive.
Temecula/Murrieta/Menefee in South Riverside county is more affordable now, and full of young families who could not afford the expensive homes in San Diego & Orange Counties.
Tracy/Lodi in San Joaquin county. Stockton is not so nice - when I was there it had a crime problem.
Lake County is affordable. Jobs? Probably questionable.

The difficulty is "good job market" and "affordable". Good jobs are in cities. Cities are generally expensive.

And, Oh dear, the question "and they are not a minority as Caucasians " is fraught with terrible problems, as it's illegal to discriminate, steer (this neighborhood is full of martians), or blockbust (as in the, martians are coming, sell now or you'll be living next to green people). Plase avoid discussion of race, gender, origin and such completely, and focus on schools, crime and a well maintained neighborhood.

Look for schools with good results "California Distinguished Schools", becuse schools with good results and low crime tend to run together. All proice districts release crime reports, Schools also release reports which are somewhat difficult to analyze, and seem to be designed so one can't compare school districts.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri May 23, 2008
You need to do some of your own homework first--visit a neighborhood several times and at different times of day to get a sense of “belonging”. Check out area statistics; real estate professionals are prohibited from “steering”—enticing a buyer to purchase, or not, in specific neighborhoods; so, you should check out demographics on your own to assure your comfort level can be reached. Since crime is a concern of yours as well, the best source of information is the local police department, consider calling or visiting and asking all your questions--you'll thank yourself later as you will have heard all the information firsthand. Make some of your own determinations, opinions are just that--what's good for one is not necessarily the case for another.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 18, 2010
I live in Brentwood and love it. Take a look at that area. Close to Stockton and Tracy. Lots of great housing deals too!

Best of luck!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 18, 2010
Have you considered Westlake/Thousand Oaks area? This area is very safe some LAPD offcers and their families call the Thousand Oaks area home. It can get warm in the Summers, but most homes are Air Conditioned. It has a beautiful rural feel and is very clean, with excellent schools. I think you would meet almost all of your above criteria in Thousand Oaks, California.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun May 3, 2009
Looking for a home in Paradise? One of the best communities in northern California is Paradise. Everything the name implies. There are many subdivisions to choose from, each home unique from the other. Home buyers expect spectacular home features plus world class recreational activities like world class bass fishing and boating from the largest manmade lake in California, Lake Oroville, and just minutes from their doorstep. Top rated schools and tons of family fun can be yours when you live in Paradise. For the best Homes and Ca real estate, look no further than Paradise, Ca. Visit site. To make Paradise your home! Where home buyers expect spectacular home features plus Top rated schools. For the best New Paradise Homes and Ca real estate, visit my site! Or try the upper ridge community of Magalia. Search magaliahome. com for a view of homes for sale.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri May 23, 2008
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon May 12, 2008
Hi Nelson,

I an agent in Lake County, CA and new to this site, so I am not sure where you are at this point in your search, but thought I would touch base. We are 3 hours north of San Francisco, 2 hours east of Sacramento and offer some pretty good pricing on homes in the area. I would love to send you a list of what's available, if you are still searching. Give me a call or email.... Jeri Lynn Meyer (707) 245-6560 or
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat May 10, 2008
My parents used to live in Pollack Pines, just past Placerville on I-50 heading up to South Lake Tahoe. Anyway, there are several communities along that stretch between Sacramento and Placerville that seem to be thriving including El Dorado Hills and Folsom. I have a friend who lives in El Dorado Hills and she and her family are quite pleased with it there.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Apr 17, 2008
Try a brand new single family home in Lincoln ranging in price from $239,990 to 369,990. 916-408-9967 or - Lincoln Lakeside Premier
Web Reference:
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 7, 2008
By "geat home market" in California, do you mean a geat value?
I can only tell you where I would (and have tried) to move my parents and family near me (Sacramento). First there is the Galt or Lodi area. Small places, you can get nice homes for 350k and VERY easy freeway access and short commutes to Elk Grove/Sacramento on the North and Stockton on the south. You're going to find better schools than in Stockton but still have ready work available to the north and south only 30 minutes away. Much lower crime too.
Next just to the north of Sacramento about 15-20 miles is Woodland. Everything you can possibly want or need there. Again, all for the same reasons... lower crime, good schools, and many residents have been there for a long time. Downtown Sacramento and Arco Arena are 20 miles away and host all the art, plays, concerts, sports games.
Last, my family is currently in a place that is about 20 miles West of Fresno. Only 15k population... very good schools... very low crime... but near a very big city of Fresno for the job market. My niece lives there and I don't think I would want her anywhere else. (I have added a link to the homes there.)
This is only a start but I am sure I could point you in the right direction.
If you'd like to discuss this in further detail, please feel free to contact me.
I hope I was able to help.
Best of luck,
Alex Amaro
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 22, 2008
Stockton probably not your best bet. Tracy is a nicer area for that price. Modesto has good area with good schools, but all the cities will have there share of crime and gangs. Thats a tough one but with the right Realtor Im sure you could find the best bang for your buck with lowest level of crime.

Feel free to email me i would love to help

Good Luck
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jan 15, 2008
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