These Are The 10 Best Riverside Suburbs For 2019

We analyzed over 54 places around Riverside 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 Riverside 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 Riverside 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 Mission Viejo, you’re probably not too surprised to find it on the top our list.

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

Figuring out the best ‘burbs around Riverside 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 Riverside.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 5,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 54 suburbs to evaluate around Riverside.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 54 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 Riverside.” We’re lookin’ at you, Mission Viejo.

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.

Mission Viejo, CA

Source: Public domain
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Population: 96,535
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Income: $107,988
Unemployment Rate: 5.4%
Poverty Rate: 4.9%
More on Mission Viejo: Real Estate | Data | Photos

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

Everyone here is rich; families average $107,988 a year, which is the 4th highest in the Riverside region. And only 5.4% are out of work. Homes average more than $640,800 each.

Yorba Linda, CA

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Population: 67,740
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Income: $123,962
Unemployment Rate: 5.4%
Poverty Rate: 3.8%
More on Yorba Linda: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Yorba Linda is the second best ‘burb we looked at near Riverside for 2019.

It ranks 2nd for incomes in the area and only 4.2% of residents lack insurance, good for 4th best.

Rancho Santa Margarita, CA

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Population: 49,078
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
Median Income: $106,939
Unemployment Rate: 3.4%
Poverty Rate: 4.4%
More on Rancho Santa Margarita: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Here in Rancho Santa Margarita, it’s really safe, and residents are just about as rich as you’ll see in the Riverside 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 Rancho Santa Margarita.

Villa Park, CA

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Population: 5,935
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Median Income: $142,628
Unemployment Rate: 8.8%
Poverty Rate: 4.7%
More on Villa Park: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Villa Park ranks as the 4th best suburb of Riverside for 2019.

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

El Cerrito, CA

Source: Public domain
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Population: 24,982
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Income: $96,914
Unemployment Rate: 6.0%
Poverty Rate: 8.9%
More on El Cerrito: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Coming in as the fifth best is El Cerrito.

El Cerrito gets kudos for having the 5th most expensive homes in the Riverside area, where houses sell for an average of $682,300. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

Laguna Hills, CA

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Population: 31,235
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 3)
Median Income: $99,797
Unemployment Rate: 5.6%
Poverty Rate: 8.6%
More on Laguna Hills: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Laguna Hills 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 5.6% which is 10th best in the area.

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

Irvine, CA

Source: Public domain
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Population: 256,877
Rank Last Year: 6 (Down 1)
Median Income: $95,573
Unemployment Rate: 5.7%
Poverty Rate: 13.2%
More on Irvine: Real Estate | Data | Photos

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

Irvine 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 28.1 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

Review Of Irvine by HomeSnacks User

Irvine is an extremely safe city with regular, active, and diligent police patrols on all major roads. It has a reputation for being one of, if not the safest city in America, and is also a beautiful city due to the planned nature of its housing communities and nature. While this does make Irvine feel like a bubble, it also ensures that it is a safe and secure environment for those living in it and especially for children, as they are guaranteed an education that is held to a higher standard than other cities. Schools are consistently excellent, and there are very few schools that are riddled with disciplinary or financial problems due to Irvine Company’s excellent management of the city’s allocated funding.

Irvine’s food is mostly chains, and there are few private businesses due to the high cost of retail spaces. As a result, your experiences in Irvine when it comes to food and shopping will always be consistently safe, but also expensive and somewhat vanilla in terms of variety. The city also begins to feel quite sterile after living there for a few years because of how safe and well-maintained it is. Transportation without a vehicle can also be difficult due to the long intervals between buses, as well as the distance from houses to retail plazas.

Walnut, CA

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Population: 30,062
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 1)
Median Income: $98,329
Unemployment Rate: 5.5%
Poverty Rate: 8.1%
More on Walnut: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Walnut 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 6.5% of people lack insurance, good for 15th in the area.

Brea, CA

Source: Public domain
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Population: 41,921
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 1)
Median Income: $90,214
Unemployment Rate: 5.6%
Poverty Rate: 7.3%
More on Brea: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Is ‘Everything Better In Brea?’


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.

Claremont, CA

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Population: 35,949
Rank Last Year: 12 (Up 2)
Median Income: $96,923
Unemployment Rate: 5.6%
Poverty Rate: 8.5%
More on Claremont: Real Estate | Data | Photos

And rounding out the top ten for 2019 is Claremont.

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 Riverside ‘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 Riverside, 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 Riverside Suburbs

Rank City Population Median Income
1 Mission Viejo 96,535 $107,988
2 Yorba Linda 67,740 $123,962
3 Rancho Santa Margarita 49,078 $106,939
4 Villa Park 5,935 $142,628
5 El Cerrito 24,982 $96,914
6 Laguna Hills 31,235 $99,797
7 Irvine 256,877 $95,573
8 Walnut 30,062 $98,329
9 Brea 41,921 $90,214
10 Claremont 35,949 $96,923
11 Lake Forest 81,812 $96,963
12 Diamond Bar 56,600 $94,531
13 Placentia 52,294 $88,501
14 Chino Hills 78,025 $102,746
15 Eastvale 59,733 $110,685
16 San Dimas 34,334 $81,242
17 La Verne 32,320 $82,829
18 Canyon Lake 11,043 $89,446
19 Rancho Cucamonga 174,573 $83,736
20 Laguna Woods 16,314 $40,837
21 Orange 140,289 $83,500
22 Tustin 80,007 $73,567
23 Glendora 51,891 $86,442
24 Upland 76,155 $65,349
25 Covina 48,601 $68,311
26 Norco 26,711 $91,915
27 Corona 163,585 $73,594
28 Murrieta 110,043 $80,373
29 Redlands 70,765 $68,956
30 Anaheim 349,007 $65,313
31 Grand Terrace 12,439 $65,422
32 Beaumont 43,641 $71,664
33 Chino 85,609 $75,530
34 Loma Linda 23,961 $52,310
35 Yucaipa 53,151 $58,166
36 Menifee 86,820 $60,808
37 Fontana 207,086 $68,304
38 Wildomar 35,492 $67,510
39 Calimesa 8,517 $50,174
40 Montclair 38,613 $54,192
41 Ontario 171,041 $57,544
42 Lake Elsinore 62,229 $66,032
43 Pomona 152,366 $53,281
44 Moreno Valley 203,691 $59,827
45 Highland 54,704 $55,130
46 Lakeland 104,165 $42,033
47 Rialto 102,708 $54,962
48 Colton 54,200 $47,256
49 Jurupa Valley 102,202 $63,286
50 Hemet 83,604 $37,171
51 Banning 30,824 $39,700
52 San Jacinto 46,932 $48,025
53 San Bernardino 215,252 $41,027
54 Perris 75,011 $54,657

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