These Are The 10 Best Modesto Suburbs For 2019

We analyzed over 17 places around Modesto to identify the most in demand places to live.

Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2019. This is our fourth time ranking the best Modesto 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 Modesto 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 Tracy, you’re probably not too surprised to find it on the top our list.

We’ll tell you what makes each of these 10 Modesto ‘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 Modesto for 2019

Figuring out the best ‘burbs around Modesto 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 Modesto.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 5,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 17 suburbs to evaluate around Modesto.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 17 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 Modesto.” We’re lookin’ at you, Tracy.

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.

Tracy, CA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 87,613
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Income: $84,162
Unemployment Rate: 7.4%
Poverty Rate: 8.4%
More on Tracy: Real Estate | Data | Photos

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

Everyone here is rich; families average $84,162 a year, which is the 1st highest in the Modesto region. And only 7.4% are out of work. Homes average more than $378,900 each.

Ripon, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 15,173
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Income: $82,141
Unemployment Rate: 5.4%
Poverty Rate: 10.5%
More on Ripon: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Ripon is the second best ‘burb we looked at near Modesto for 2019.

It ranks 2nd for incomes in the area and only 6.2% of residents lack insurance, good for 3rd best.

Escalon, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 7,449
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Income: $67,277
Unemployment Rate: 2.3%
Poverty Rate: 10.9%
More on Escalon: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Here in Escalon, it’s really safe, and residents are just about as rich as you’ll see in the Modesto 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 Escalon.

Manteca, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 75,314
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Median Income: $68,019
Unemployment Rate: 10.1%
Poverty Rate: 11.8%
More on Manteca: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Manteca ranks as the 4th best suburb of Modesto for 2019.

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

Riverbank, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 24,047
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Income: $63,656
Unemployment Rate: 9.0%
Poverty Rate: 11.0%
More on Riverbank: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Coming in as the fifth best is Riverbank.

Riverbank gets kudos for having the 10th most expensive homes in the Modesto area, where houses sell for an average of $247,200. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 21,050
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 3)
Median Income: $72,094
Unemployment Rate: 8.9%
Poverty Rate: 12.6%
More on Lathrop: Real Estate | Data

Lathrop 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 8.9% which is 4th best in the area.

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

Turlock, CA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 71,906
Rank Last Year: 8 (Up 1)
Median Income: $53,661
Unemployment Rate: 10.1%
Poverty Rate: 16.4%
More on Turlock: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The 7th best suburb on our list goes to Turlock.

Turlock 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 12.1 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

Oakdale, CA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 22,256
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 1)
Median Income: $52,500
Unemployment Rate: 12.9%
Poverty Rate: 14.4%
More on Oakdale: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Oakdale 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 5.5% of people lack insurance, good for 2nd in the area.

Hughson, CA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 7,295
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 3)
Median Income: $57,443
Unemployment Rate: 12.0%
Poverty Rate: 16.7%
More on Hughson: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Is ‘Everything Better In Hughson?’


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.

Ceres, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 47,650
Rank Last Year: 10 (No Change)
Median Income: $51,113
Unemployment Rate: 13.2%
Poverty Rate: 15.2%
More on Ceres: Real Estate | Data | Photos

And rounding out the top ten for 2019 is Ceres.

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 Modesto ‘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 Modesto, 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 Modesto Suburbs

Rank City Population Median Income
1 Tracy 87,613 $84,162
2 Ripon 15,173 $82,141
3 Escalon 7,449 $67,277
4 Manteca 75,314 $68,019
5 Riverbank 24,047 $63,656
6 Lathrop 21,050 $72,094
7 Turlock 71,906 $53,661
8 Oakdale 22,256 $52,500
9 Hughson 7,295 $57,443
10 Ceres 47,650 $51,113
11 Patterson 21,497 $61,761
12 Stockton 304,358 $48,396
13 Newman 10,951 $52,783
14 Livingston 13,831 $53,115
15 Atwater 29,118 $50,181
16 Waterford 8,786 $51,827
17 Gustine 5,735 $44,167

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.

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