This Orange County city could be home to anyone: It’s a family-friendly place to live and a young town, with a median age of about 30. It’s also home to a number of colleges. Housing is pretty reasonably priced, with a median home value of $383,900 and a median gross rent (rent plus utilities) of $1,354 per month. And as far as quality of life goes, you’re in Southern California where the sun shines pretty much all year long.
One unique thing about the population of Santa Ana is that it’s predominantly Latino, with over 70 percent of residents claiming Hispanic or Latino ancestry and 70 percent of those people claiming Mexican ancestry. This is good news for the food scene, as Mexican restaurants can be found throughout the city — carne asada is a pretty big deal here.
In recent years, downtown Santa Ana has become a lively scene with lots of art, restaurants, patio bars and live music. Downtown is a great spot for young renters; it’s walkable, fun and in close proximity to pretty much everything you need. Nearby Lacy is a good neighborhood for young families. If you’re interested in buying a beautiful historic home and have some cash to spare, check out Floral Park.
Santa Ana is located less than two hours from both major cities of Los Angeles and San Diego — but who needs San Diego? Santa Ana has its own zoo. It also has an amusement park and a science center. If you want to dip your feet in the Pacific, Newport Beach is about 25 minutes away.