Are you thinking of making a move to beautiful San Diego?
Recently placing #32 on the list of World’s Best Cities for 2023, San Diego provides residents with a gorgeous climate, ample economic opportunities, and world-class educational institutions. Californians regularly vote San Diego as a #1 favorite destination within the state, and the city recently topped national rankings as one of the most appealing communities for those seeking an active lifestyle.
If you want to become a San Diego resident, this guide will provide all the info you need to get started!
The city of San Diego—why it’s an ideal place to live
San Diego is renowned for its beautiful beaches, sunny climate, and year-round outdoor recreation which includes surfing, sailing, hiking, and biking. With attractions like Balboa Park, Old Town Historic Park, and Sunset Cliffs Natural Park enticing locals and tourists alike, San Diego enjoys a strong economy that supports its many diverse cultural, arts, and retail opportunities.
From luxury estates to beachside retreats, the city has a variety of housing options for all lifestyles.
San Diego’s top neighborhoods
San Diego’s diverse neighborhoods provide something for everyone. Here are a few local favorites:
Point Loma is the perfect spot for those who appreciate history, nature, and outdoor activities. With its stunning vistas, delicious bayside eateries, and remarkable sea caves, it's no wonder Point Loma is one of San Diego's most popular neighborhoods.
Mission Hills is an affluent, fashionable neighborhood with a long history. Featuring many Classical Revival and Spanish Colonial Revival style buildings, it has a unique architectural legacy. While primarily residential, the area boasts a number of highly-rated boutique shops and eateries.
Pacific Beach, located on the northern side of Mission Bay, is renowned for its lively nightlife. Often referred to as "the party capital of San Diego," P.B. has a wide selection of beach bars where you can enjoy drinks and conversation while listening to the waves coming in. The homes in P.B. vary from cozy craftsman and Spanish-stlye cottages, to art-deco buildings, mid-century, and the sleek, contemporary minimalism found in many beachfront estates.
Popular areas for newcomers
If you’re just dipping your toes in San Diego culture and want to live somewhere centrally located that gives you a taste of everything the city has to offer, these are the best neighborhoods for new residents seeking a sample of the area’s lifestyle:
University Heights offers an unbeatable combination of convenience, safety, and local amenities. The neighborhood is close to downtown, making it easy for you to access the area’s many attractions and services. Boasting proximity to Balboa Park and other green spaces, University Heights has excellent public transportation options available as well as several shopping centers.
This vibrant, uptown neighborhood is pedestrian-friendly and gives you easy access to the city's many cultural attractions and activities. Here you’ll find diverse restaurants, shops, nightclubs, wine bars, boutiques, and even a brewery! Hillcrest also boasts a thriving nightlife with numerous entertainment options for people from all walks of life.
Living in Downtown San Diego means you’ll be close to a wide range of employment opportunities, entertainment venues, and local hot spots. The neighborhood is extremely walkable and bike-friendly, with plenty of public transportation options providing easy access to the rest of the city. Regardless of your interests, there's always something new happening thanks to Downtown’s booming cultural scene which includes art galleries, museums, music festivals, and movie screenings. Here, you’re within easy reach of beaches like Coronado Beach or Mission Bay Park as well as neighborhoods like Little Italy, The Gaslamp Quarter, and East Village.
Finding the best real estate opportunities
Connecting with an experienced real estate agent is essential when it comes to buying in a competitive city like San Diego. An expert can help you navigate the often complex process of buying a home, assisting you with everything from finding properties that meet your criteria to negotiating contracts with sellers.
The Cassity Team prides itself on being San Diego’s premiere real estate experts and we’re here to answer whatever questions you have about the local market.
Think you might be ready to see some attractive San Diego homes? Here are some recent listings:
1. 10231 Lone Dove St San Diego, CA, 92127 - $1,799,000
5 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 2,829 square feet
Listed by Kristina Quesada •DRE #01976758 • Douglas Elliman of California
Listed by Jenna Yost •DRE #01933053 • Douglas Elliman of California
2. 7541 Milky Way Point, San Diego, CA, 92120 - $950,000
4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,647 square feet
Listed by Fredy Garcia • DRE #01959761 • Compass, 619-829-6063
3. 6026 Cirrus St, San Diego, CA 92110 - $849,000
3 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 1,408 square feet
Listed by Kyle Murphy •DRE #01847767 • Coldwell Banker Realty
Listed by Janet McCollough •DRE #00887068 • Coldwell Banker Realty
4. 8353 Ivory Coast Dr San Diego, CA, 92126 - $875,000
4 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,320 square feet
Listed by Mary Lawler • DRE #01446152 • San Diego Castles Realty
5. 4250 Biona Place San Diego, CA, 92116 - $1,395,000
3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,481 square feet
Listed by Patrick Mercer •DRE #01964971 • Keller Williams La Jolla
6. 5606 McHugh San Diego, CA, 92114 - $699,999
3 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms, 1,838 square feet
Listed by Tony Johnson •DRE #01345425 • Big Block Realty, Inc.
7. 6404 Zena Dr San Diego, CA, 92115 - $589,000
3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,352 square feet
Listed by Krystin McDonald •DRE #02039575 • Berkshire Hathaway HomeService
8. 3184 Carnegie Ct San Diego, CA, 92122 - $1,549,000
3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 1,350 square feet
Listed by John Freeman •DRE #01931871 • eXp Realty
Listed by Andrea Fulop •DRE #02009450 • eXp Realty
Making the move easier—tips & advice
When making your move to San Diego, it is important to plan ahead and stay organized. Make sure you have secured a place to live before your arrival, as finding housing in the city can be competitive.
Bringing things with you? If possible, take measurements of all your furniture pieces so they’ll fit through doorways and stairwells at your new home. Also, consider hiring professional movers or renting a large truck to make the move easier on yourself.
Top tips before your move:
1. Research: Before you move, determine what area fits with the lifestyle you’re seeking. What sort of commute can you tolerate? Will you be using a car or planning to get around via bike and public transportation? Certain communities are more pedestrian-friendly, so visit Walk Score and Commute Time Map to see which area aligns with your needs.
2. Budget: Once you’ve done your research and know how much it’ll cost to move, set a realistic budget for yourself so that you can plan accordingly. Make sure to factor in costs like your downpayment, closing costs, temporary rental, storage, or moving fees.
3. Temporary housing: If you’re moving here from far away, consider finding a short-term housing rental while you search for the perfect home. This will give you time to get familiar with all of San Diego before deciding where exactly you want to live.
4. Organize: Create lists of what needs packing and create color-coded boxes for each room so that unpacking is easier once moved into your new home.
5. Utilize online resources: Take advantage of sites like www.sandiego.gov for info on community resources. If you have a pet, go to the San Diego Humane Society for info on how to get them licensed and print a list of local 24-hour veterinary clinics in the event of an emergency. Since climate change is such an important concern to San Diego residents, find your property’s risk assessment at RiskFactor.com and familiarize yourself with emergency preparation.
Setting up utilities (electricity, gas, water, trash)
Water and sewer services in San Diego can be set up on The City of San Deigo Website. Electricity and natural gas are provided by San Diego Gas and Electric, and trash collection is provided by City of San Diego Collection Services. Don’t forget the Internet! The top five internet providers in San Diego are AT&T, Spectrum, Cox, T-Mobil, and Viasat. Those using San Diego public transportation may want to get the PRONTO app or card to ride MTS buses and trolleys. Information on how to get a San Diego library card is available on the public library page.
Ready to make your move?
If you're in the market for buying or selling a home in Southern California, The Cassity Team is your go-to real estate partner. With years of experience and expertise, we'll help make your transaction seamless. Get in touch with us now to get started!
All listings provided courtesy of SDMLS.
Last updated on 30, January, 2023 at 2:31PM.
Did any of the homes on this list catch your eye? Give us a call at (619) 568-2386 to find out how we can help!