Moving to San Jose, California

Moving to San Jose, California

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    Are you thinking about moving to San Jose, California? San José is the largest city in Northern California in terms of population and area.

    El Pueblo de San José de Guadalupe, which translates to “the Town of Saint Joseph of Guadalupe” in Spanish, is the ancestor of San Jose. The city and its named township were spelled “San José” in print media during the 1800s. Based on local usage, the United States Board on Geographic Names decided that the city’s name should be “San Jose.”

    San Jose’s inventiveness, wealth, diversity of cultures, and pleasant, sunny Mediterranean climate make it ideal for people looking to settle down. The city keeps expanding due to the influx of recent college graduates and young professionals looking for well-paying jobs.

    So, without giving too much away, this blog post will cover everything you need to know about moving to San Jose, CA.

    Quick facts regarding moving to San Jose, CA

    Where is San Jose, CA, located?

    San Jose, CA, is in the southern part of the Bay Area in Northern California, within the Santa Clara Valley. It is positioned about 55 miles south of San Francisco. It’s the largest city in Northern California in population and area, spanning 179.97 square miles.

    Population of San Jose, CA

    San Jose, California, has a population of 971,233 as of the 2021 census, with population key stats stated below:

    • San Jose, CA’s population has dropped by 7.92% since the 2020 census.
    • The median age in San Jose, CA is 37.1 years.
    • The male-female ratio in San Jose, CA, is 49.12% of males and 50.88% of females.
    • The poverty rate in San Jose, CA, is 7.67%

    Diversity of San Jose, CA

    With a population diversity score of 96 out of 100 and A+ ratings,  the ethnic composition of San Jose, California, is stated by:

    • Asian- 36.8% 
    • White -31.9% 
    • Hispanic-24.5%
    • Black-2.1%
    • Other races-4.6%

    Is San Jose, CA, safe?

    San Jose’s crime rate is higher than the national average, with 2,858 total crimes per 100,000 people compared to the national average of 2,580 per 100,000 people.

    • San Jose, CA, experienced a 10.71% rise in crime compared to the same period in 2021.
    • There were 15,552 reported crimes, including 2,526 violent crimes and 13,026 property crimes.
    • The most frequent crime was theft, accounting for 7,855 incidents.
    • The chance of falling victim to violent crime is 1 in 228, while the risk for property crime is 1 in 35.
    • The most common violent crime is aggravated assault, with 1,406 incidents.

    The safe neighborhoods in San Jose, CA are:

    • South San Jose
    • Willow Glen
    • Campbell
    • Los Gatos
    • Rose Garden
    • Almaden
    • Berryessa
    • Blossom Valley
    • Cambrian Park
    • Evergreen

    Cost of Living in San Jose, CA

    The cost of living in San Jose, California, is 49% higher than the national average:

    • Grocery prices are 21% higher, and healthcare costs are 18% above the national average.
    • The living wage in San Jose ranges from $26.20 to $90.70 per hour, depending on the profession.
    • A minimum annual income of $226,800 for a family and $100,800 for a single person is recommended to live comfortably.
    • The city suggests a $54 per hour salary for renting an average two-bedroom apartment and $123 per hour for buying an average home.
    • San Jose renters must earn at least $55.15 per hour (over $114,000 annually) to afford rent without exceeding one-third of their income.
    • The average cost of living in San Jose, CA, is $3,650 per month for A single individual and $6348 for a family of 4, including rent, placing it in the top 0.2% of the most expensive cities globally.

    Here is a table comparing the cost of living in San Jose, CA, with other cities in California:

    CityCost of Living IndexHousingGroceriesHealthcare
    San Jose, CA231250.3% higher21% higher18% higher
    Sunnyvale, CA231421.0% higher43% higher33% higher
    San Francisco, CA245.5266.0% higher31% higher31% higher
    Los Angeles, CA161.7140% higher11% higher12% higher

    Job Market in San Jose, CA

    San Jose, CA, anticipates robust job growth, with total nonfarm employment projected to increase by 7.7% in 2022 and maintain an average annual growth rate of 2.5% from 2023 to 2027. 

    Moving to San Jose, CA, will be a good idea if you have a job in construction, health and education, or professional and managerial services.

    • The median salary in San Jose, CA, is $72,384.
    • San Jose, CA, boasts a low unemployment rate of 3.4%, surpassing the long-term average of 5.14%.
    • San Jose’s median salary stands at $72,384.
    • San Jose, CA’s average annual household income is $106,931.

    The top employers in San Jose, CA:

    • Cisco Systems Inc
    • Adobe Inc
    • eBay Inc
    • Netapp Inc
    • Western Digital
    • Google
    • PayPal
    • Infineon Technologies
    • Verifone
    • Sanmina Corporation

    The most common jobs in San Jose:

    • Cashier
    • Sales Associate
    • Administrative Assistant
    • Internship
    • Customer Service Representative
    • Volunteer
    • Receptionist
    • Office Assistant
    • Software Engineer
    • Medical Assistant

    Highest-paying jobs in San Jose, CA

    • Hospitalist Physician
    • Staff Psychiatrist
    • Psychiatrist
    • Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist
    • Physician
    • Pediatrician
    • Family Practice Physician
    • Internal Medicine Physician
    • General Practitioner
    • Surgeon

    Tax rates in San Jose, CA

    Here are the tax rates you can expect to pay when moving to San Jose, CA.

    • Sales Tax: San Jose’s total local sales tax rate is 9.375%, including the state, Santa Clara County, city, and a special tax.
    • Income tax: 1%-12.3%
    • Property Tax: Santa Clara County, where San Jose is, has an average effective property tax rate of 0.85%. San Jose’s actual rate may vary based on property value and local tax levies.

    Housing market in San Jose, CA

    San Jose, CA’s housing market is highly competitive, with homes getting an average of 6 offers and selling in 11 days. If you are relocating to San Jose, California, here’s what you need to know about the City’s housing and rental market stats.

    • The median home sold price in San Jose was $1,301,116.
    • The average cost of buying a home in California, San Jose, has reached $1.35 million, a 9.0% increase from the previous year.
    • San Jose, CA, had a homeownership rate of 56.2% for 2017-2021.
    • The median home value in San Jose, CA, was $986,700.
    • The median list price per square foot in San Jose, CA, was $827 in November 2023, reflecting a 7.1% increase from the previous year.
    • The average rent for an apartment in San Jose, CA, stood at $3,021.
    • About 44.79% of households in San Jose, CA, were renters.
    Housing costsSan JoseUS
    Median home cost$1,301,116$338,100
    Rental cost of a studio$2,338 to $2,737$1080
    Rental cost of 1 bedroom$2,004 to $2,507$1180
    Rental cost of 2 bedroom$2,444 to $3,090$1430
    Rental cost of 3 bedroom$3,021$1860

    Top neighborhoods in San Jose, CA

    The best places to live in San Jose, CA are as follows:

    • Alviso
    • West San Jose
    • Silver Creek
    • Downtown San Jose
    • Japantown
    • Willow Glen
    • Campbell
    • Almaden Valley
    • Shasta-Hanchett Park
    • Rose Garden

    Education system in San Jose, CA

    San Jose has top-ranked schools like Dr. T.J. Owens Gilroy Early College Academy, fourth in California, and Lynbrook High School, 14th in the state. San Jose schools average an 8 out of 10 ranking, putting them in the top 30% of California public schools.

    • San Jose, California, has 229 public schools serving 127,079 students and 92 private schools catering to 23,349 students.
    • The student-teacher ratio is 22:1, a bit higher than the national average.
    • KIPP San Jose Collegiate ranks 50th in California, boasting a 93% graduation rate and an 80.2 college readiness score.
    • San Jose High School is nationally ranked at #4,920.
    • The San Jose Unified School District got a C for student-teacher ratio, averaging 21.98 students per teacher.
    • San Jose State University’s in-state tuition is $7,992, and out-of-state tuition is $19,872.
    • After aid and scholarship funds are deducted, the average cost is $14,209 for in-state students and $28,353 for out-of-state students receiving need-based aid.

    Middle schools in San Jose, CA:

    • Joaquin Miller Middle School
    • University Preparatory Charter
    • Bret Harte Middle School
    • Castillero Middle
    • River Glen

    Elementary schools in San Jose, CA:

    • Williams Elementary
    • Graystone Elementary
    • Los Alamitos Elementary
    • Booksin Elementary
    • Simonds Elementary

    High schools in San Jose, CA:

    • Dr. T.J. Owens Gilroy Early College Academy
    • Monta Vista High School
    • Lynbrook High School
    • Cupertino High School
    • KIPP San Jose Collegiate

    Colleges and universities in San Jose, CA:

    Public Transportation in San Jose, CA

    San Jose has an excellent public transportation system with many different transit options and ridesharing options available in the city. 

    The one-way commute is about 29.4 minutes, longer than the US average of 26.4 minutes.

    For getting to work:

    • Car: 64.6% of workers drive, and 9.2% carpool.
    • Public Transportation: Approximately 16% use public transportation.
    • Working from Home: About 11% work from home.

    The available public transportation includes:

    • VTA (Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority): Operates buses and light rail in San Jose and the Santa Clara Valley, covering extensive areas.
    • Caltrain: Provides commuter rail service along the San Francisco Peninsula, linking San Jose with South Bay and San Francisco.
    • ACE (Altamont Corridor Express): Offers commuter rail service between San Jose and Stockton, with stops in the East Bay and the Central Valley

    Weather and climate in San Jose, CA

    San Jose, California, has a Mediterranean climate featuring two distinct seasons: warm and wet.

    • The warm season spans 4.1 months, from June 6 to October 11, with an average daily high temperature exceeding 78°F.
    • The wet season covers 5.2 months, lasting from November 4 to April 11.
    • February has the most wet days in San Jose, averaging 7.9 days with at least 0.04 inches of precipitation.
    • San Jose receives an annual average rainfall of 16 inches.
    • San Jose experiences a substantial number of sunny days annually, averaging 260 sunny days per year.
    • September is the hottest month of the year in San Jose.
    • January marks the coldest month of the year in San Jose, with an average low temperature of 42°F.
    • April, May, September, and October are the best time to visit San Jose, California.

    Here is a table showing the average high and low temperatures for each month in San Jose, CA:

    MonthAverage High (°F)Average Low (°F)

    Things to Do in San Jose, CA

    Check out the list of things to do and places to see in San Jose, CA:

    • Check out the Winchester Mystery House for its unique architecture and rich history.
    • Relax in the Municipal Rose Garden, a free and beautiful spot to enjoy nature.
    • Explore the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum, home to the largest collection of Egyptian artifacts in western North America.
    • Wander around Santana Row, a stylish shopping area with designer shops, eateries, and a movie theater.
    • Experience interactive exhibits at Tech Interactive, a great family-friendly science and technology center.
    • Hike and enjoy scenic views at Alum Rock Park, Almaden Quick Silver, or Mt. Umunhum.
    • Visit the Japanese Friendship Garden for a peaceful and beautiful stroll.
    • Discover the arts and entertainment scene in the SoFA District, a downtown neighborhood.
    • Have fun and learn at the Children’s Discovery Museum with interactive exhibits for kids.
    • Take a tour to learn about the history and current trends of the tech industry in Silicon Valley.

    Pros and Cons of Living in San Jose, CA

    Here is a detailed table summarizing the pros and cons of living in San Jose, CA :

    Pros of Living in San JoseCons of Living in San Jose
    Fantastic weatherHigh cost of living
    Abundant job opportunitiesTraffic congestion
    Diverse food sceneMeager nightlife
    Low crime rateLimited outdoor space
    Excellent schoolsPoor work-life balance

    Final Verdict

    San Jose is a fantastic city to live in if you’re considering moving to California. It is varied and inventive, offering something for everyone. The city also made its mark on the world for its unique attractions and prominence in the tech industry.

    San Jose has its share of drawbacks, but we hope that the benefits of living in this city and our detailed blog post information data will make it easier for you to locate a home in a safe area.

    Photo Credit:Darshan Karia