Relocating from the Bay Area?

The Sacramento Valley is a great place to relocate to. Its central location, affordability, fantastic school systems, and recreational opportunities make it a perfect place to escape the high prices and congested roadways of the Bay Area.



The biggest difference between the Sacramento Valley and the Bay Area is the difference in affordability and cost of living. The price to pay for a home in the Bay Area is nearly triple that of the Sacramento Valley. In fact, the California Association of Realtors® found that the median home value in June 2016 in San Francisco County is $1,350,000 while in Placer County, the median value was $444,590. Furthermore, the amount of residents in these subject areas that can afford to buy a median priced home based on their income is strikingly different and speaks volumes to the affordability of the regions. In San Francisco, only 13% of people can afford to buy the median priced home while in Sacramento and Placer Counties, 45% and 46%, respectively, of people can afford to buy a median priced home. Additionally, this is well-above the Affordability Index of the entire state of California of 31%.

See the full graph below as presented by C.A.R.

Housing Affordability Index

Room to Peak

Since the great recession that began in the late 2000's, home prices have been making a steady recovery--some places have more than recovered while other areas still have room to recover. A prime example of this is to look at the Bay Area home prices versus that of the Sacramento Area. Prices in the Bay Area have exceeded those of the pre-recession peak up to 38% in some areas. Meanwhile, the Sacramento Area home prices have not yet reached its peak levels suggesting that there still has some increasing to do (see chart below). History has shown that there is always a new peak and since Placer, El Dorado, and Sacramento Counties have yet to exceed peak pricing, the market still has room to grow making it a great time to invest.


Last Cyclical
Peak Month

Last Cyclical
Peak Price

June 2016
Median Price

% Change
Since Peak

San Francisco County
May 2007
San Mateo County
October 2007
Santa Clara County
April 2007
Alameda County
May 2007
Marin County
June 2007
May 2007
Sacramento County
August 2005
Placer County
August 2005
Housing Affordability Index


To make a long story short, it's a great time to buy in the Sacramento Area as prices still have room to peak...about 15%!

Traffic Jams

Traffic is the price residents pay for living in big cities. A quick Google search of worst cities for traffic will heed dozens of list all with the Bay Area and Silicon Valley in the top 10. Business Insider published their list in March 2016 of the 5 cities that have the worst traffic in America.  Number 5 on the list is San Jose and number 2 is San Francisco, estimating that commuters need to allow 37 extra minutes for traffic and waste an average of 5.95 days per year due to congested roadways! The article is based off TomTom Traffic Index which tracks and ranks world traffic in 174 major cities. It lists San Francisco as the 31st worst traffic city in the world where Sacramento is only 121. So while Sacramento isn't traffic jam free, you'll waste a lot less time in the car than in the Bay Area!

25 US Cities with the Worst Traffic

  1. Los Angeles, CA
  2. San Francisco, CA
  3. New York, NY
  4. Seattle, WA
  5. San Jose, CA
  6. Honolulu, HI
  7. Miami, FL
  8. Washington D.C.
  9. Portland, OR
  10. Chicago, IL
  11. Houston, TX
  12. Boston, MA
  13. Atlanta, GA
  14. San Diego, CA
  15. Tampa, FL
  16. Orlando, FL
  17. Philadelphia, PA
  18. Baton Rouge, LA
  19. Nashville, TN
  20. New Orleans, LA
  21. Austin, TX
  22. Las Vegas, NV
  23. Denver, CO
  24. Riverside, CA
  25. Sacramento, CA
(According to TomTom Traffic Index)

25 World Cities with the Worst Traffic

  1. Mexico City, Mexico
  2. Bangkok, Thailand
  3. Istanbul, Turkey
  4. Rio de Janiero, Brazil
  5. Moscow, Russia
  6. Bucharest, Romania
  7. Salvador, Brazil
  8. Recife, Brazil
  9. Chengdu, China
  10. Los Angeles, United States
  11. Saint Petersburg, Russia
  12. Tianjin, China
  13. Warsaw, Poland
  14. Beijing, China
  15. Rome, Italy
  16. London, United Kingdom
  17. Hangzhou, China
  18. Marseille, France
  19. Taipie, Tiawan
  20. Chonqing, China
  21. Changsha, China
  22. Guangzhou, China
  23. Shenzhen, China
  24. Shenyang, China
  25. Manchester, United Kingdom
(According to TomTom Traffic Index)

22.00 Minutes

Average commute time for Sacramento residents.

A survey conducted by the California Association of Realtors (C.A.R.) found that most people would choose the super power: make traffic disappear.


Want to find out more about the Sacramento Valley?

Visit our community profiles below to find out why we don't just sell the Sacramento Valley, we love the Sacramento Valley.
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