10 Richest Cities In California For 2019

We analyzed 427 places in California to determine where the 1% live.

Editor’s Note: Data has been updated for 2019. This is our fifth time ranking the richest cities in California.

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What makes you feel like you made a lot of money? When you land an extra few shifts at work, when you get a couple hundred dollar bonus, or even a streak of good tips?

Chances are if you are a Millenial reading this article, you probably are not living a very lavish lifestyle. Even if you are making an amazing salary, you likely have student loans that mask your increased income.

So what happens if you finally make it out of this debt rut? What happens if you make it big and suddenly have a lot of disposable income? Will you become a Whole Foods shopper? Get a new car? Move to a better place?

We can’t help with many of your money-spending habits, but if you’ve somehow made a good chunk of money and want to move where all the other rich-folk are, we’ve got your back.

Where is one state that houses a lot of wealthy Americans? California is an easy first guess and you are right– California is one of the most expensive places to live.

California as a hot commodity is a no-brainer. It is a state that many others seem to be envious of. It has beaches, mountains, and everything in between. Most of the state appears like a postcard– who wouldn’t want to live there?

But where in California do the rich call home? Which cities are the richest in a state already overflowing with wealthy people?

We crunched the numbers to answer those questions so that you can know where the top of America’s wealthy live.

We analyzed 427 cities in California to determine where the 1% live. By looking at several “rich” factors, like poverty level, household income, and unemployment rates, the richest city in California was a clear winner: Los Altos Hills.

But if riding horses in your free time isn’t your forte, that’s perfectly fine. Turns out, the top 10 richest cities in California are so favorable that many of them won a 10/10 on our SnackAbility scale.

No matter where you live in California, you will probably be surrounded by some of America’s wealthiest individuals. And for a good reason– it is one of the top American destinations.

Interested to see how your favorite California cities stack up? Read on to learn more about our methodology and detailed views of our top 10 richest cities in California.

Rich people not your cup of tea? Feel free to check out some more reading about California:

The 10 Richest Cities In California For 2019

Los Altos Hills, CA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 8,490
Rank Last Year: 3 (Up 2)
Median Income: $248,218
Unemployment Rate: 3.3%
Poverty Rate: 4.2%
More on Los Altos Hills: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Los Altos, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 30,527
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 1)
Median Income: $208,309
Unemployment Rate: 3.8%
Poverty Rate: 3.2%
More on Los Altos: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Los Altos /ls æltos/ ( listen) is a city in Santa Clara County, California, in northern Silicon Valley, in the San Francisco Bay Area. The population was 28,976 according to the 2010 census.

Danville, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 44,205
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 8)
Median Income: $152,798
Unemployment Rate: 3.7%
Poverty Rate: 3.3%
More on Danville: Real Estate | Data | Photos

The Town of Danville is located in the San Ramon Valley in Contra Costa County, California. It is one of the incorporated municipalities in California that uses “town” in its name instead of “city”. The population was 42,039 in 2010.

Woodside, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 5,550
Rank Last Year: 5 (Up 1)
Median Income: $250,000
Unemployment Rate: 3.8%
Poverty Rate: 4.3%
More on Woodside: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Orinda, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 19,248
Rank Last Year: 6 (Up 1)
Median Income: $186,075
Unemployment Rate: 4.2%
Poverty Rate: 2.6%
More on Orinda: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Orinda is a city in Contra Costa County, California, United States. The population was 17,643 at the 2010 census, and was estimated in 2012 to have increased to 18,342. Orinda was ranked the second most friendly town in America by Forbes. The city is located just east of the city of Berkeley and is home to many affluent suburban professionals who commute to downtown Oakland, San Francisco, and Walnut Creek. Its location provides for a more rustic landscape, and Orinda’s many parks and trails make it a destination for many Bay Area hikers and naturalists.

Palos Verdes Estates, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 13,591
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 3)
Median Income: $180,815
Unemployment Rate: 3.3%
Poverty Rate: 4.7%
More on Palos Verdes Estates: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Palos Verdes Estates is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States, situated on the Palos Verdes Peninsula. The city was master-planned by the noted American landscape architect and planner Frederick Law Olmsted Jr. The city is located along the Southern California coastline of the Pacific Ocean.

Clayton, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 11,838
Rank Last Year: 32 (Up 25)
Median Income: $146,225
Unemployment Rate: 4.0%
Poverty Rate: 2.3%
More on Clayton: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Clayton (formerly Clayton’s and Claytonville, colloquially referred to as Blayton) is a city in Contra Costa County, California, United States. The population was 10,897 as of the 2010 census.

San Ramon, CA

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 75,048
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 1)
Median Income: $142,718
Unemployment Rate: 3.6%
Poverty Rate: 4.2%
More on San Ramon: Real Estate | Data | Photos

San Ramon is a city in Contra Costa County, California, United States, located 34 miles east of San Francisco, and within the San Ramon Valley. San Ramon’s population was estimated as 76,134 in mid-2015 by the US Census Bureau, making it the 4th largest city in Contra Costa County, behind Richmond, Concord and Antioch.

Pleasanton, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 79,341
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 2)
Median Income: $138,269
Unemployment Rate: 3.5%
Poverty Rate: 4.3%
More on Pleasanton: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Pleasanton is a city in Alameda County, California, incorporated in 1894. It is a suburb in the San Francisco Bay Area located about 25 miles (40 km) east of Oakland, and 6 miles (9.7 km) west of Livermore. The population was 70,285 at the 2010 census. In 2005 and 2007, Pleasanton was ranked the wealthiest middle-sized city in the United States by the Census Bureau. Pleasanton is home to the headquarters of Workday, Ellie Mae, Roche Molecular Diagnostics, Blackhawk Network Holdings, and Veeva Systems. Other major employers include Kaiser Permanente, Safeway, Oracle, Nordstrom and Macy’s. Although Oakland is the Alameda County seat, a few county offices and a courthouse are located in Pleasanton. The Alameda County Fairgrounds are located in Pleasanton, where the county fair is held during the last week of June and the first week of July. Pleasanton Ridge Regional Park is located on the west side of town.

Mill Valley, CA

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 14,392
Rank Last Year: 2 (Down 8)
Median Income: $141,698
Unemployment Rate: 2.3%
Poverty Rate: 4.7%
More on Mill Valley: Real Estate | Data | Photos

Mill Valley is a city in Marin County, California, United States, located about 14 miles (23 km) north of San Francisco via the Golden Gate Bridge. The population was 13,903 at the 2010 census.

How We Determined The Richest Places In California For 2019

Map Of The Richest Places To Live In California
The first thing that comes to most people’s minds when they think about determining the richest places is to simply identify personal incomes. After all, rich people have really high salaries.

However, we don’t believe that one statistic wholly encompasses what it means to be one of the “richest places”. So we looked at this set of criteria from the newly released 2013-2017 American Community Survey:

  • Poverty Level
  • Median Household Income
  • Unemployment Rate

Median household income is the most digestible way to understand how rich a place really is. The unemployment rate tries to capture the prospects for more people to become rich. If more people are employed, the richer the future looks.

After we collected the data for all 427 places with more than 5,000 people in California, we ranked each place from 1 to 427 for each of the criteria, with 1 being the richest.

We then averaged all the rankings for a place into a “Rich Score” with the place having the lowest overall Rich Score, Los Altos Hills, crowned the “Richest City In California For 2019”.

You can learn more about the top ten below or skip to the end to see the rankings for all 427 places.

There You Have It – The Wealthiest Places In California For 2019

Like we said earlier, when we set out to identify the richest places in California, we weren’t sure what we’d encounter, but it ended up being some of the best places to live in California.

When you look at the data, the cities and places mentioned above meet the criteria for being at the very top of the income ladder for everyone that lives there.

If you’re curious enough, here are the poorest cities in California, according to data:

Poorest: Mendota
2nd Poorest: Adelanto
3rd Poorest: Calipatria

For more California reading, check out:

How Is The Area In ?

Detailed List Of The Richest Cities In California

Rank City RichScore Median Income
1 Los Altos Hills 10.33 $248,218
2 Los Altos 11.5 $208,309
3 Danville 12.5 $152,798
4 Woodside 15.33 $250,000
5 Orinda 16.5 $186,075
6 Palos Verdes Estates 17.0 $180,815
7 Clayton 17.17 $146,225
8 San Ramon 17.67 $142,718
9 Pleasanton 19.33 $138,269
10 Mill Valley 19.67 $141,698
11 Tiburon 20.5 $151,429
12 Dublin 21.33 $138,007
13 La Habra Heights 24.33 $112,273
14 Piedmont 25.83 $202,631
15 Hermosa Beach 28.33 $124,849
16 Half Moon Bay 29.0 $110,900
17 Foster City 30.0 $136,383
18 Hillsborough 30.67 $238,750
19 Rancho Santa Margarita 31.33 $106,939
20 Rancho Palos Verdes 32.17 $124,552
21 San Carlos 32.5 $152,521
22 Rolling Hills Estates 32.5 $131,471
23 Corte Madera 35.83 $134,902
24 Atherton 36.17 $250,000
25 San Marino 37.67 $152,527
26 Livermore 39.5 $109,084
27 Lafayette 40.5 $152,609
28 Pacifica 40.83 $106,959
29 Palo Alto 42.0 $147,537
30 Westlake Village 42.33 $136,131
31 Solana Beach 42.5 $103,864
32 Saratoga 42.5 $173,136
33 Belmont 43.5 $125,958
34 Los Gatos 45.17 $132,671
35 Manhattan Beach 45.67 $148,899
36 Fremont 46.0 $122,191
37 Hercules 46.67 $107,221
38 Newport Beach 49.83 $119,379
39 Sausalito 49.83 $110,385
40 Fairfax 51.17 $98,092
41 Campbell 52.5 $108,498
42 San Anselmo 53.5 $116,867
43 Aliso Viejo 53.67 $106,353
44 Folsom 54.83 $106,718
45 Moraga 56.0 $139,018
46 Yorba Linda 56.17 $123,962
47 Millbrae 57.17 $109,984
48 Burlingame 60.0 $118,410
49 Mountain View 63.0 $120,351
50 Menlo Park 63.33 $132,928
51 Agoura Hills 64.5 $116,652
52 Morgan Hill 65.5 $107,161
53 Scotts Valley 65.83 $101,404
54 Sunnyvale 67.83 $118,314
55 Santa Clara 68.17 $108,609
56 Redondo Beach 69.17 $104,548
57 Buellton 70.83 $77,462
58 Mission Viejo 72.33 $107,988
59 Cupertino 72.83 $153,449
60 Cypress 73.67 $90,345
61 San Mateo 73.83 $103,399
62 Larkspur 74.0 $95,592
63 Indian Wells 79.17 $103,516
64 San Clemente 80.17 $101,843
65 San Bruno 80.17 $94,705
66 Redwood City 81.83 $99,026
67 La Palma 83.5 $91,024
68 Encinitas 83.67 $103,842
69 Carlsbad 84.17 $102,722
70 Newark 84.83 $96,817
71 Malibu 86.17 $134,282
72 Camarillo 88.0 $92,780
73 Calabasas 88.17 $114,143
74 Benicia 89.17 $95,225
75 Coronado 91.0 $99,641
76 Lake Forest 91.0 $96,963
77 South San Francisco 91.33 $92,074
78 Novato 92.5 $89,812
79 Arroyo Grande 93.67 $74,654
80 Pacific Grove 94.0 $80,788
81 Simi Valley 94.67 $93,516
82 Windsor 95.5 $91,032
83 Pleasant Hill 96.33 $101,530
84 Atascadero 97.67 $72,240
85 Healdsburg 98.83 $77,928
86 Martinez 99.5 $98,102
87 Rocklin 99.67 $91,995
88 Union City 101.0 $95,625
89 Moorpark 102.33 $102,145
90 Sierra Madre 104.0 $98,547
91 Pismo Beach 104.33 $77,316
92 Cloverdale 104.5 $67,309
93 Laguna Beach 106.5 $117,586
94 Truckee 106.83 $89,154
95 Culver City 107.5 $86,997
96 Thousand Oaks 107.5 $103,793
97 Cerritos 109.33 $98,953
98 Laguna Niguel 109.5 $99,206
99 Huntington Beach 109.5 $88,079
100 Walnut 110.83 $98,329

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.

One thought on “10 Richest Cities In California For 2019

  1. i dont understand one thing. Why do so a many people that write articles not know the difference between wealth and income? So many people in California live on trusts and have no real job, but they have 100 milliion dollars or more in their bank account. Why do you all confuse Wealth and Income? One has absolutely nothing to do with the other.

    I am looking for information on “Which counties in CA are the WEALTHIEST. I have not interest whatsoever in the yearly income. If you know where I can find that, I would appreciate your passing it along.

    Thank you!

    Kelly Hill

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