These Are The 10 Best Irvine Suburbs For 2019

We analyzed over 73 places around Irvine to identify the most in demand places to live.

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Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2019. This is our fourth time ranking the best Irvine suburbs.

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Big city living isn’t for everyone–but at the same time, urban areas certainly have their perks.

There’s the culture, the food, the arts, the food, the energy, and you know, the food. But there are drawbacks. There’s traffic, expensive parking, expensive housing–pretty much, expensive everything, depending on which big city you’re looking at.

But that’s where the suburbs come in–they have all of the benefits of being near big cities, without actually having to be big cities.

Of course, not all suburbs of Irvine are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado…

If you happen to be a resident of Newport Beach, you’re probably not too surprised to find it on the top our list.

We’ll tell you what makes each of these 10 Irvine ‘burbs better than the rest–but first, a bit about our methodology.

Or feel free to check out some more reading about California:

Editor’s Note: If you see a slight difference between the best in state rankings and this suburb ranking, it’s because of the methodology. We needed a way to include more places, so we eliminated crime and commute times as criteria for this analysis.

How We Determined The Best Suburbs Around Irvine for 2019

Figuring out the best ‘burbs around Irvine was pretty simple; we just needed to list several things that people like, and then find out which cities have the most of those things.

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible:

  • Low unemployment rate
  • High Median household incomes
  • Population density (lots of things to do)
  • High home values
  • A lot of college educated people
  • Low poverty
  • High rate of insured families

Then we used the newest American Community Survey data (2013-2017) to research each suburb.

FYI: We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Irvine.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 3,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 73 suburbs to evaluate around Irvine.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 73 in each category, where 1 was the “best.

Next, we averaged the rankings for each place to create a quality of life index.

And finally, we crowned the city with the best quality of life index the “Best Suburb near Irvine.” We’re lookin’ at you, Newport Beach.

Read on below to learn more about what it’s like to live in the best of the best. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the suburbs ranked from best to worst.

Newport Beach, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 86,793
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Income: $119,379
Unemployment Rate: 4.3%
Poverty Rate: 6.2%
More on Newport Beach: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Newport Beach is always mentioned as one of the best suburbs in the Irvine area. We’ll tell you the good about “Awesome Newport Beach.”

Everyone here is rich; families average $119,379 a year, which is the 3rd highest in the Irvine region. And only 4.3% are out of work. Homes average more than $1,695,700 each.

Aliso Viejo, CA

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Population: 50,691
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Income: $106,353
Unemployment Rate: 4.8%
Poverty Rate: 4.6%
More on Aliso Viejo: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Aliso Viejo is the second best ‘burb we looked at near Irvine for 2019.

It ranks 9th for incomes in the area and only 5.1% of residents lack insurance, good for 9th best.

Yorba Linda, CA

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Population: 67,740
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Income: $123,962
Unemployment Rate: 5.4%
Poverty Rate: 3.8%
More on Yorba Linda: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Here in Yorba Linda, it’s really safe, and residents are just about as rich as you’ll see in the Irvine metro area.

The bad side? Schools are more crowded, and the cost of living puts a large part of the city out of reach for most families.

But price is based on demand and a lot of people want to live in Yorba Linda.

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA

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Population: 49,078
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 1)
Median Income: $106,939
Unemployment Rate: 3.4%
Poverty Rate: 4.4%
More on Rancho Santa Margarita: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Rancho Santa Margarita ranks as the 4th best suburb of Irvine for 2019.

You won’t find many better places to raise your kids in the region than in Rancho Santa Margarita and the schools are some of the best around.

Mission Viejo, CA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 96,535
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Income: $107,988
Unemployment Rate: 5.4%
Poverty Rate: 4.9%
More on Mission Viejo: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Coming in as the fifth best is Mission Viejo.

Mission Viejo gets kudos for having the 16th most expensive homes in the Irvine area, where houses sell for an average of $640,800. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

Cypress, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 49,108
Rank Last Year: 13 (Up 7)
Median Income: $90,345
Unemployment Rate: 4.5%
Poverty Rate: 5.8%
More on Cypress: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Cypress is proud of its 6th place finish on this list. And here’s why.

Most residents have great jobs and the unemployment rate sits at 4.5% which is 5th best in the area.

According to online reports, Cypress is quickly becoming one of the more affluent suburbs in the Irvine area, meaning you need to get in soon.

Laguna Niguel, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 65,429
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 1)
Median Income: $99,206
Unemployment Rate: 5.8%
Poverty Rate: 7.3%
More on Laguna Niguel: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The 7th best suburb on our list goes to Laguna Niguel.

Laguna Niguel schools are some of the best in the region, and crime is really low. The cost of living makes it a lot more desirable for many families, especially first-time home buyers.

And, it’s only 11.1 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

San Clemente, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 65,226
Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change)
Median Income: $101,843
Unemployment Rate: 5.1%
Poverty Rate: 6.4%
More on San Clemente: Real Estate | Data | Photos

San Clemente is growing quickly, and for a good reason. Crime is far below average, and most residents are gainfully employed. Even the cost of living is reasonable.

A solid 7.4% of people lack insurance, good for 25th in the area.

La Habra Heights, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 5,425
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 1)
Median Income: $112,273
Unemployment Rate: 3.8%
Poverty Rate: 3.0%
More on La Habra Heights: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Is ‘Everything Better In La Habra Heights?’


It placed 9th on our list thanks to the fact that it’s really expensive to live here, but the schools are great, so you get what you pay for in that regard.

Laguna Beach, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 23,224
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 1)
Median Income: $117,586
Unemployment Rate: 6.6%
Poverty Rate: 6.6%
More on Laguna Beach: Real Estate | Data | Photos

And rounding out the top ten for 2019 is Laguna Beach.

This city is far above average in every category, and the best part? It’s far more affordable than the other cities listed above. So, you get a big bang for your buck here.

Welcome to the Best Irvine ‘Burbs of 2019

We said it once and we’ll say it again–life in the big city isn’t for everyone. At least not all the time.

So if you’re hankering for some of the amenities of a larger city like Irvine, but don’t want to deal with the drawbacks, one of these suburbs might just be for you.

For more California reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best Irvine Suburbs

Rank City Population Median Income
1 Newport Beach 86,793 $119,379
2 Aliso Viejo 50,691 $106,353
3 Yorba Linda 67,740 $123,962
4 Rancho Santa Margarita 49,078 $106,939
5 Mission Viejo 96,535 $107,988
6 Cypress 49,108 $90,345
7 Laguna Niguel 65,429 $99,206
8 San Clemente 65,226 $101,843
9 La Habra Heights 5,425 $112,273
10 Laguna Beach 23,224 $117,586
11 Villa Park 5,935 $142,628
12 La Palma 15,814 $91,024
13 Huntington Beach 200,415 $88,079
14 Dana Point 34,028 $90,310
15 El Cerrito 24,982 $96,914
16 Cerritos 50,145 $98,953
17 Fountain Valley 56,640 $86,602
18 Laguna Hills 31,235 $99,797
19 Walnut 30,062 $98,329
20 Brea 41,921 $90,214
21 Diamond Bar 56,600 $94,531
22 Lake Forest 81,812 $96,963
23 Lakewood 81,106 $84,055
24 Placentia 52,294 $88,501
25 Chino Hills 78,025 $102,746
26 San Dimas 34,334 $81,242
27 La Mirada 49,162 $87,400
28 Eastvale 59,733 $110,685
29 Canyon Lake 11,043 $89,446
30 Los Alamitos 11,639 $79,459
31 Laguna Woods 16,314 $40,837
32 Seal Beach 24,510 $65,401
33 Tustin 80,007 $73,567
34 Costa Mesa 112,930 $75,109
35 Whittier 86,852 $69,058
36 Orange 140,289 $83,500
37 San Juan Capistrano 35,948 $81,730
38 Buena Park 83,020 $71,005
39 Norco 26,711 $91,915
40 Artesia 16,853 $62,702
41 Covina 48,601 $68,311
42 West Covina 107,786 $74,551
43 Fullerton 139,976 $71,660
44 Downey 113,358 $68,162
45 Westminster 91,785 $57,575
46 Signal Hill 11,508 $75,843
47 La Habra 61,965 $72,178
48 Garden Grove 174,812 $62,675
49 Corona 163,585 $73,594
50 Carson 92,927 $75,517
51 Santa Fe Springs 17,669 $63,540
52 Norwalk 106,404 $63,669
53 Anaheim 349,007 $65,313
54 Pico Rivera 63,750 $61,586
55 Long Beach 470,489 $58,314
56 Bellflower 77,852 $52,944
57 Chino 85,609 $75,530
58 Midway 3,322 $56,458
59 Santa Ana 334,493 $57,151
60 La Puente 40,451 $60,019
61 Wildomar 35,492 $67,510
62 Stanton 38,648 $50,601
63 Paramount 55,020 $49,064
64 Riverside 321,570 $62,460
65 Lake Elsinore 62,229 $66,032
66 Lakeland 104,165 $42,033
67 Lynwood 71,350 $45,839
68 Bell Gardens 42,845 $39,008
69 Ontario 171,041 $57,544
70 Montclair 38,613 $54,192
71 Hawaiian Gardens 14,465 $38,553
72 Pomona 152,366 $53,281
73 Jurupa Valley 102,202 $63,286

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