These Are The 10 Best Riverside Suburbs For 2018


We analyzed over 54 places around Riverside to identify the most in demand places to live.

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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…

Here are the 10 best suburbs around Riverside for 2018:

  1. Mission Viejo (Photos | Homes)
  2. Yorba Linda (Photos | Homes)
  3. Rancho Santa Margarita (Photos | Homes)
  4. Villa Park (Photos | Homes)
  5. El Cerrito (Photos | Homes)
  6. Irvine (Photos | Homes)
  7. Walnut (Photos | Homes)
  8. Lake Forest (Photos | Homes)
  9. Laguna Hills (Photos | Homes)
  10. Brea (Photos | Homes)

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.

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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 2018

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 (2012-2016) 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.

1. Mission Viejo

Mission Viejo, California

Source: Public domain

Population: 96,178
Unemployment Rate: 6.0%
Median Home Price: $608,100
Median Income: $104,886
More on Mission Viejo: Real Estate | Data

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 $104,886 a year, which is the 4th highest in the Riverside region. And only 6.0% are out of work. Homes average more than $608,100 each.

2. Yorba Linda

Yorba Linda, California

Population: 67,362
Unemployment Rate: 6.5%
Median Home Price: $728,300
Median Income: $119,697
More on Yorba Linda: Real Estate | Data

Yorba Linda is the second best ‘burb we looked at near Riverside for 2018.

It ranks 2nd for incomes in the area and only 4.9% of residents lack insurance, good for 4th best.

3. Rancho Santa Margarita

Rancho Santa Margarita, California

Population: 49,038
Unemployment Rate: 3.6%
Median Home Price: $584,000
Median Income: $104,556
More on Rancho Santa Margarita: Real Estate | Data

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.

4. Villa Park

Villa Park, California

Population: 5,922
Unemployment Rate: 8.7%
Median Home Price: $1,030,800
Median Income: $131,386
More on Villa Park: Real Estate | Data

Villa Park ranks as the 4th best suburb of Riverside for 2018.

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.

5. El Cerrito

El Cerrito, California

Source: Public domain

Population: 24,646
Unemployment Rate: 6.6%
Median Home Price: $636,600
Median Income: $92,670
More on El Cerrito: Real Estate | Data

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 $636,600. However, the cost of living here is among the highest in the area.

6. Irvine

Irvine, California

Source: Public domain

Population: 246,992
Unemployment Rate: 6.2%
Median Home Price: $718,800
Median Income: $93,823
More on Irvine: Real Estate | Data

Irvine 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 6.2% which is 6th best in the area.

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

7. Walnut

Walnut, California

Population: 30,026
Unemployment Rate: 6.6%
Median Home Price: $679,700
Median Income: $97,345
More on Walnut: Real Estate | Data

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

Walnut 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 27.3 miles to downtown, which is a good thing.

8. Lake Forest

Lake Forest, California

Population: 80,658
Unemployment Rate: 5.2%
Median Home Price: $550,600
Median Income: $92,415
More on Lake Forest: Real Estate | Data

Lake Forest 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 8.8% of people lack insurance, good for 15th in the area.

9. Laguna Hills

Laguna Hills, California

Population: 31,127
Unemployment Rate: 6.2%
Median Home Price: $628,800
Median Income: $92,690
More on Laguna Hills: Real Estate | Data

Is ‘Everything Better In Laguna Hills?’

Almost.

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. Brea

Brea, California

Source: Public domain

Population: 41,351
Unemployment Rate: 6.4%
Median Home Price: $579,600
Median Income: $85,555
More on Brea: Real Estate | Data

And rounding out the top ten for 2018 is Brea.

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 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 Riverside, but don’t want to deal with the drawbacks, one of these suburbs might just be for you.

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Detailed List Of The Best Riverside Suburbs

Rank City Population Unemployment Rate Median Home Price Median Income
1 Mission Viejo 96,178 6.0% $608,100 $104,886
2 Yorba Linda 67,362 6.5% $728,300 $119,697
3 Rancho Santa Margarita 49,038 3.6% $584,000 $104,556
4 Villa Park 5,922 8.7% $1,030,800 $131,386
5 El Cerrito 24,646 6.6% $636,600 $92,670
6 Irvine 246,992 6.2% $718,800 $93,823
7 Walnut 30,026 6.6% $679,700 $97,345
8 Lake Forest 80,658 5.2% $550,600 $92,415
9 Laguna Hills 31,127 6.2% $628,800 $92,690
10 Brea 41,351 6.4% $579,600 $85,555
11 Diamond Bar 56,456 7.3% $593,100 $89,845
12 Claremont 35,827 6.8% $581,100 $94,005
13 Canyon Lake 10,985 7.4% $379,400 $84,015
14 La Verne 32,078 7.0% $500,300 $78,385
15 Chino Hills 77,266 7.0% $537,800 $97,222
16 Eastvale 58,217 9.6% $460,100 $104,940
17 Placentia 52,168 6.8% $554,500 $80,668
18 San Dimas 34,109 7.0% $481,000 $79,081
19 Laguna Woods 16,347 5.1% $228,700 $39,201
20 Rancho Cucamonga 173,309 8.9% $414,200 $79,973
21 Tustin 79,396 6.8% $543,200 $70,822
22 Upland 75,851 5.9% $444,200 $62,369
23 Orange 139,919 7.3% $565,800 $79,192
24 Glendora 51,285 10.1% $481,800 $78,448
25 Norco 26,809 8.5% $445,700 $87,067
26 Covina 48,539 9.7% $415,300 $65,451
27 Murrieta 108,583 10.9% $339,800 $76,149
28 Redlands 70,442 7.1% $326,800 $66,514
29 Corona 161,614 7.8% $378,500 $72,309
30 Grand Terrace 12,393 9.6% $249,700 $64,188
31 Beaumont 42,191 6.7% $250,500 $68,369
32 Anaheim 346,776 8.1% $457,600 $61,826
33 Chino 83,670 9.0% $365,500 $72,832
34 Loma Linda 23,859 6.8% $291,600 $51,390
35 Fontana 205,228 10.2% $289,400 $65,995
36 Menifee 84,978 11.3% $244,700 $57,598
37 Yucaipa 52,886 9.2% $241,700 $55,700
38 Montclair 38,294 9.3% $281,100 $50,374
39 Ontario 169,389 9.3% $293,000 $54,896
40 Wildomar 34,775 12.1% $266,900 $62,976
41 Pomona 151,807 11.0% $310,100 $50,360
42 Lake Elsinore 60,230 12.8% $259,700 $63,306
43 Highland 54,490 11.4% $269,000 $53,504
44 Moreno Valley 202,061 12.3% $231,400 $56,456
45 Lakeland 102,714 9.5% $109,300 $40,918
46 Calimesa 8,379 13.4% $168,700 $46,070
47 Rialto 102,418 13.8% $236,100 $52,347
48 Colton 53,856 9.8% $189,500 $43,966
49 Jurupa Valley 100,737 12.7% $270,700 $58,849
50 San Jacinto 46,375 13.2% $159,700 $48,382
51 Hemet 82,748 19.0% $139,400 $35,609
52 Banning 30,643 14.0% $177,000 $40,627
53 San Bernardino 214,581 14.1% $176,800 $38,456
54 Perris 73,718 14.2% $211,400 $51,315

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