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 Los Angeles are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado…
Here are the 10 best suburbs around Los Angeles for 2018:
- Hermosa Beach (Photos)
- Manhattan Beach (Photos)
- Palos Verdes Estates (Photos)
- Redondo Beach (Photos)
- Rancho Palos Verdes (Photos)
- Rolling Hills Estates (Photos)
- San Marino (Photos)
- Sierra Madre
- Calabasas (Photos)
- La Habra Heights
If you happen to be a resident of Hermosa 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 Los Angeles ‘burbs better than the rest–but first, a bit about our methodology.
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 Los Angeles for 2018
Figuring out the best ‘burbs around Los Angeles 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 (2012-2016) to research each suburb.
FYI: We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Los Angeles.
Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 4,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 77 suburbs to evaluate around Los Angeles.
We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 77 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 Los Angeles.’ We’re lookin’ at you, Hermosa 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.
1. Hermosa Beach
Population: 19,726Unemployment Rate: 4.1%
Median Home Price: $1,166,800
Median Income: $121,345
Hermosa Beach is always mentioned as one of the best suburbs in the Los Angeles area. We’ll tell you the good about ‘Awesome Hermosa Beach.’
Everyone here is rich; families average $121,345 a year, which is the 5th highest in the Los Angeles region. And only 4.1% are out of work. Homes average more than $1,166,800 each.
2. Manhattan Beach
Population: 35,573Unemployment Rate: 5.1%
Median Home Price: $1,537,200
Median Income: $144,868
Manhattan Beach is the second best ‘burb we looked at near Los Angeles for 2018.
It ranks 2nd for incomes in the area and only 2.5% of residents lack insurance, good for 1st best.
3. Palos Verdes Estates
Population: 13,582Unemployment Rate: 2.0%
Median Home Price: $1,609,500
Median Income: $200,766
Here in Palos Verdes Estates, it’s really safe, and residents are just about as rich as you’ll see in the Los Angeles 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 Palos Verdes Estates.
4. Redondo Beach
Population: 67,664Unemployment Rate: 5.8%
Median Home Price: $775,300
Median Income: $103,782
Redondo Beach ranks as the 4th best suburb of Los Angeles for 2018.
You won’t find many better places to raise your kids in the region than in Redondo Beach and the schools are some of the best around.
5. Rancho Palos Verdes
Population: 42,412Unemployment Rate: 4.3%
Median Home Price: $1,003,300
Median Income: $120,668
Coming in as the fifth best is Rancho Palos Verdes.
Rancho Palos Verdes gets kudos for having the 9th most expensive homes in the Los Angeles area, where houses sell for an average of $1,003,300. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.
6. Rolling Hills Estates
Population: 8,206Unemployment Rate: 4.4%
Median Home Price: $1,096,400
Median Income: $129,728
Rolling Hills Estates 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 4.4% which is 5th best in the area.
According to online reports, Rolling Hills Estates is quickly becoming one of the more affluent suburbs in the Los Angeles area, meaning you need to get in soon.
7. San Marino
Population: 13,324Unemployment Rate: 4.3%
Median Home Price: $1,518,400
Median Income: $139,792
The 7th best suburb on our list goes to San Marino.
San Marino 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 18.5 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.
8. Sierra Madre
Population: 11,067Unemployment Rate: 5.3%
Median Home Price: $861,200
Median Income: $95,256
Sierra Madre 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 3.7% of people lack insurance, good for 4th in the area.
Population: 24,091Unemployment Rate: 5.2%
Median Home Price: $926,800
Median Income: $111,111
Is ‘Everything Better In Calabasas?’
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.
10. La Habra Heights
Population: 5,406 Unemployment Rate: 4.9%
Median Home Price: $893,200
Median Income: $110,329
And rounding out the top ten for 2018 is La Habra Heights.
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 Los Angeles ‘Burbs of 2018
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 Los Angeles, but don’t want to deal with the drawbacks, one of these suburbs might just be for you.
For more California reading , check out:
- These Are The 10 Snobbiest Cities In California
- These Are The 10 Safest Places In California
- These Are The 10 Dumbest Cities In California