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Moving to the Central Valley

Planning a move to the Central Valley?

Would you trade the hustle and bustle, congested traffic, and sky high rent of the Bay Area for slower pace living, more affordable housing, and strong community connections? A lot of people would. According to Global Workforce Analytics, 25-30% of the American workforce could be exclusively, or partially, working from home by the end of 2021. This means freedom for many from the conventional days in the office and the ability to live in a more desirable location.

Many residents of the Bay Area are utilizing the opportunity to work from home and cut geographical ties with the 9-county Bay Area. Today we will explore the impacts of working from home on moving trends, and the communities of San Joaquin and Stanislaus counties.

With much of the workforce shifting away from traditional offices, companies like Pinterest, Facebook, various startups, and other companies are letting leases on commercial office space expire, saving upwards of $10,000 per month in some cases. With remote working becoming more and more common through 2020 and into 2021, many employees are looking for increased quality of life, while ditching astronomical rent prices.

Not only can employers save money this way, but employees can save possibly $2-4,000 per year on vehicle maintenance, wear and tear, gas, and other expenses (Global Workplace Analytics). Decreased time on the road means more time with family, and less time commuting in congested traffic. In 2019, roughly 58,404 Central Valley citizens (some even from Merced County!) commuted daily to somewhere in the 9 county Bay Area Region.

With the lower cost of living and housing costs, many Bay Area natives will be able to choose home ownership and desirable communities over the extremely high costs of living, in San Francisco, for example. Average rent in the San Francisco peninsula remains around $3,700 per month, and in Livermore, $2,164 (RentCafe). Average San Joaquin county rent settled around $1,500. Home ownership becomes a reality for many, where it was not a possibility before. Median home prices in San Joaquin county are at roughly $430,000 (Redfin), and a Bay Area city like Pleasanton, for example, median home price is $1,306,000.

Though it’s true that many people talk of moving out of the Bay Area, only a small percentage do. However, data from USPS showed that 124,131 households — which can mean an individual, a couple, or a family — requested a change of address during the seven-month period (March 1-November 1), with at least 34,803 of those requests, or 28%, for moves to a different neighborhood within San Francisco. Still, that’s 89,328 residents that chose other areas of California, or moved out of state entirely.

What does the Central Valley, specifically San Joaquin and Stanislaus counties, have to offer? Abundance, beauty, and quality of life for starters. Many hidden gem communities like Ripon, Escalon, Oakdale, Riverbank offer country living options, and close-knit communities. Bigger city options include Tracy, Modesto, Turlock, Stockton and Lodi.

San Joaquin County is made up of Stockon, Lodi, Tracy, Manteca, French Camp, Escalon, Ripon, Acampo, Linden, Morada and Lockeford; and is home to 762,148 residents. Stanislaus county contains Modesto, Turlock, Riverbank, Oakdale, Ceres, Patterson, Hughson, Salida, Newman, Waterford, Denair, Hickman, Empire and Keyes. 550,660 residents live in Stanislaus county. For most of the communities here, within 1-2 hours, you have access to Sacramento, the Bay Area, the foothills and Sierras. The valley truly is the gate to some of California’s most beautiful features.

As a Central Valley Real Estate expert, my goal is to provide local information and stats that help you navigate and narrow down your desired community. On my blog, I currently have two posts, one for each Ripon, and Escalon, that dive into local gems, information, and facts. Check those out, and stay tuned for more as dive into each community that make up these two beautiful counties, and go over each and every aspect that makes it unique. If you are considering a move, you’ll discover that the Central Valley is home to natural abundance, close knit communities with small town

charm, and all the access to bigger cities and features; offering that enriched quality of life to all.

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