Moving To Santa Ana, California


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    So, you are a California lover willing to explore more about one of its unheard-of cities. How about moving to Santa Ana, CA? Let’s check it out!

    Santa Ana is located in South California, a segment of Greater Los Angeles. It is the second most populous city and ranks 29th among the diverse suburbs of Orange County. Moreover, the city ranks 32nd in the Best Places to Live.

    Founded by Don Gaspár de Portolá in 1769, the city was fondly known as “Downtown of Orange County,” Santa Ana is known for Rickenbacker musical instrument company for electric guitars, and corporate headquarters for big companies like Behr Paint and First American Financial Corporation.

    Also, we have compiled much information you want to know before you pack your bags to relocate to Santa Ana, CA. So, keep reading!

    Quick Facts Before Moving To Santa Ana, California

    Where Is Santa Ana, CA, Located?

    Santa Ana, California, is in Southern California, part of Greater Los Angeles.

    It serves as the county seat for Orange County, located near the Santa Ana Mountains and River.

    Population In Santa Ana, CA

    The population of Santa Ana, CA, is 310,227 residents. As of the 2020 census, Santa Ana is the second most populous city in Orange County.

    Diversity In Santa Ana, CA

    Santa Ana is a diverse city with a population of around 310,000, showcasing a mix of racial and ethnic groups, including 25.3% White, 11.8% Asian, and 77.0% identifying as Hispanic or Latino.

    The city has a diversity score of 78 out of 100, indicating its higher diversity than other U.S. cities.

    Cost Of Living In Santa Ana, CA

    Santa Ana, CA, has a cost of living significantly higher than the national average, with a cost of living index of 164.9, exceeding the U.S. average by 64.9%.

    • Housing expenses in Santa Ana are notably elevated, 87% more expensive than the U.S. average, and utility costs are approximately 11% higher.
    • Food costs in Santa Ana are 11% higher than the national average, while healthcare is 2% lower, and transportation costs are 28% higher.
    • The average cost of living in Santa Ana, CA, is $2478 per annum.
    • The median household income in Santa Ana is $84,210, though other sources say it is $77,283. The average annual household income is reported to be $94,914.
    • For a comfortable life in Santa Ana, a recommended minimum annual income is $133,920 for a family and $76,000 for a single person. However, these figures can vary based on personal lifestyle, specific Santa Ana locations, and economic changes.
    Cost of Living FactorsIndex Value
    Overall Cost of Living164.9
    Housing87% higher than the U.S. average
    Utilities11% higher than the U.S. average
    Food11% higher than the U.S. average
    Healthcare2% lower than the U.S. average
    Transportation28% higher than the U.S. average

    Housing Market In Santa Ana, CA

    Homes in Santa Ana, CA, are highly sought after, often selling within approximately 29 days.

    • The average home value in Santa Ana is $753,764, showing a 3.1% increase in the past year.
    • The median price for homes listed in 2023 was $748,000, with a median sale price of $768,000.
    • The median list price per square foot is $564 in Santa Ana.
    • Owner-occupied housing units constitute 44.8% of Santa Ana, meaning residents own less than half.
    • The average apartment rent in Santa Ana is $2,576, with a median rent of $2,730 for various bedroom counts and property types.
    • Occupied housing units with renters account for 54.28% in Santa Ana, indicating a significant portion of the population rents their homes.

    Average rental price in Santa Ana, CA

    The average rent for apartments in Santa Ana, CA, is approximately $2,576 monthly.

    • Studio apartments have an average rent in Santa Ana from $1,829 to $1,890.
    • For 1-bedroom apartments, the average rent is approximately $2,061 to $2,250.
    • 2-bedroom apartments in Santa Ana have an average rent of around $2,800.
    • The average rent for a 3-bedroom house in Santa Ana is $3,297 monthly.

    Job Market In Santa Ana, CA

    The job market in Santa Ana, California, is growing, with a 0.6% increase in the past year and a predicted 31.7% growth over the next ten years, slightly below the national average.

    • The city is expected to gain 212,600 jobs by 2024, with crucial growth in professional and business services, health care, leisure, hospitality, and construction.
    • Average salaries in Santa Ana are reported at $72,372 per year or $35 per hour, but another source suggests an average of $55,676 annually or $26.77 per hour.
    • The median household income in Santa Ana is $84,210, contributing to the overall economic landscape of the city.
    • As of 2023, the unemployment rate is 3.7%, unchanged from the previous month and slightly above the year-ago estimate but lower than the long-term average of 5.02%.

    Top Employers In Santa Ana, CA

    • Orange County
    • United States Postal Service
    • First American Financial
    • Ingram Micro
    • Rancho Santiago Community College District
    • Tenet Healthcare
    • SchoolsFirst Federal Credit Union
    • Western Medical Center
    • City of Santa Ana
    • Ducommun

    Most Common Job Titles In Santa Ana, CA

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

    Highest Paying Jobs In Santa Ana, CA

    • Psychiatrist
    • Box Truck Owner Operator
    • Federal Government
    • Cyber Security Analyst
    • Law Enforcement Instructor
    • Board Certified Behavior Analyst (BCBA)
    • Enrolled Agent
    • Flight Paramedic

    Is It Safe To Live In Santa Ana, CA?

    Santa Ana, California, is generally safe, with various neighborhoods to choose from, but like any large city, safety levels can differ. So, choose a safe neighborhood if you’re moving to Santa Ana, CA.

    • The overall crime rate in Santa Ana is 7% higher than the national average.
    • Homicides decreased to 15 in 2021 from a high of 23 in 2016.
    • Your chance of being a victim of violent crime ranges from 1 in 172 in central neighborhoods to 1 in 258 in the south part of the city.
    • For property crime, chances range from 1 in 16 in southeast neighborhoods to 1 in 53 in the northwest part of the city.
    • Property crimes are the most common crime in Santa Ana.

    Safest Neighborhoods In Santa Ana, CA

    • Floral Park
    • Fisher Park
    • Lemon Heights / North Tustin
    • East Tustin
    • West Grove Valley
    • West Side
    • Thornton Park / Republic Homes
    • Tustin Villas
    • Artesia Pilar East
    • Wilshire Square
    • Casa de Santiago
    • Meredith Parkwood
    • Morrison-Eldridge Park

    How Fast Can You Commute In Santa Ana, CA

    The one-way commute time in Santa Ana, CA, is about 25.3 minutes, slightly below the national average.

    Most Santa Ana residents drive alone to work, with an average car ownership of 2 cars per household, similar to the national average.

    List available public transportation in Santa Ana, CA

    • Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) operates buses in Santa Ana and Orange County, including routes like Route 53 (Anaheim to Irvine) and Route 55 (Santa Ana to Newport Beach).
    • Metrolink trains stop at The Depot, known as the Santa Ana Regional Transportation Center, serving the Inland Empire-Orange County Line and Orange County Line.
    • Amtrak provides intercity train services at The Depot.
    • The Depot serves as a hub for various intercity and interstate bus services.
    • The Depot in Santa Ana combines airport and taxi services for residents and visitors.
    • OCTA offers rideshare programs to facilitate commuting.

    How Is The Weather In Santa Ana, CA?

    Santa Ana has two main seasons: a warm one from July to September with temperatures above 80°F and a cool one from November to March with temperatures below 70°F.

    • Santa Ana has a hot, semi-arid climate, with hot, dry summers and mild winters. The average annual high is 76°F, and the low is 55°F.
    • Santa Ana gets an average of 13.63 inches of rain annually, with February having the most rainy days. 
    • August is the hottest month in Santa Ana, with an average high of 83°F and a low of 65°F.
    • December is the coldest month in Santa Ana, with an average low of 46°F and a high of 68°F.
    • The best time to visit California, Santa Ana is August, November, and March.

    Education System In Santa Ana, CA

    • Schools in Santa Ana are rated 5/10 on average, placing them in the lower half of California public schools. Santa Ana High School is ranked #9,808 nationally.
    • The tuition at Santa Ana College for the 2023-2024 academic year is $1,180 for California residents and $8,788 for out-of-state students. The total estimated cost, including all expenses, is $25,471.
    • The Santa Ana Unified School District has 61 schools with 44,271 students, and the average student-teacher ratio is 21.55. Santa Ana High School has a higher ratio of 24 students per teacher.

    Best Middle Schools In Santa Ana, CA

    • Ocsa
    • Samueli Academy
    • Advanced Learning Academy

    Best Elementary Schools In Santa Ana, CA

    • Fairhaven Elementary School
    • Advanced Learning Academy
    • Jim Thorpe Fundamental

    Best High Schools In Santa Ana, CA

    • Middle College High School
    • Ocsa
    • Hector G. Godinez

    Best Universities And Colleges In Santa Ana, CA

    • Pepperdine University
    • Chapman University
    • Santa Ana College
    • California Coast University

    What Are The Best Things To Do In Santa Ana, CA?

    The best things to see in Santa Ana, CA, are:

    • Explore international art at Bowers Museum, a leading cultural center in Orange County.
    • Step back in time at Lyon Air Museum, which is dedicated to preserving and showcasing World War II military aircraft, vehicles, and memorabilia.
    • Shop and dine at Main Place Mall, a bustling shopping center with various stores and restaurants.
    • Ignite curiosity at Discovery Cube Orange County, a science museum featuring interactive exhibits for children.
    • Experience craft distillation at Blinking Owl Distillery, Orange County’s first craft distillery offering behind-the-scenes tours.
    • Visit Santa Ana Zoo, a compact zoo with a focus on the diverse wildlife of Central and South America.
    • Discover the heritage of Orange County at the Heritage Museum of Orange County, a cultural and natural history center.
    • Take a trip through history with the Santa Ana Historical Preservation Society, offering tours of historical sites in the city.
    • Dive into the lively Santa Ana nightlife, with various bars and clubs for a vibrant evening experience.

    Best Neighbourhoods In Santa Ana, CA

    The best places to live in Santa Ana, CA, are:

    • Downtown Santa Ana
    • Floral Park
    • Meredith Parkwood
    • Morrison-Eldridge Park
    • Thorton Park
    • South Coast (South Coast Metro)
    • Sandpoint
    • Morning Sunwood
    • Concord
    • Portola Park

    Pros And Cons Of Living In Santa Ana, CA

    Before moving to Santa Ana, CA, you should know the city’s pros and cons. This will help you make an informed decision about whether or not it’s the right place for you. Here is a table summarizing the pros and cons of living in Santa Ana, California:

    Pros Of Living In Santa AnaCons Of Living In Santa Ana
    Home to significant historical buildingsHigh cost of living
    Favorable climatePoor public transport
    Rich in fauna and floraHigh living and housing costs lead to struggles for many residents
    Vibrant culture and arts sceneThere is a limited number of great bars and clubs compared to other major cities
    Excellent shopping places and restaurantsHigh property prices and rents
    Median household income is slightly above the national averagePoor air quality
    Good schools and collegesDifficulty in finding a decent place to stay
    Proximity to beautiful beachesDependence on bottled water
    A tolerant and welcoming communityHigher crime rate compared to other communities in California
    Sightseeing opportunities including a zoo and memorial parkHigh rates of motor vehicle theft
    High quality of lifeHigh cost of goods and services
    Close to John Wayne Orange County International AirportHigh mortgage interest rate


    To conclude, if you have planned to move to California, Santa Ana would be the best place to raise your family. Besides having a lot of attractions, arts, culture, and activities, the city also records high educational, healthcare, and job opportunities. With all the town has to offer, it’s no surprise people are moving to Santa Ana, CA. If you’re considering moving to the area, now’s the time to book your tickets!

    Photo Credit: Charlie Nguyen, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons