Moving to Santa Clara

Welcome to our extensive guide on starting a new chapter in the vibrant city of Santa Clara, CA. Noted for its exceptional quality of life, thriving tech scene, and exuberant local culture, this Silicon Valley gem invariably holds a magnetic appeal for those seeking to relocate. Whether you're drawn by the allure of cutting-edge corporations, the beckoning sunny weather, or the city's rich tapestry of diversity, this guide is your compass to navigating your move. Let's embark on this exciting journey together--unearthing key insights, helpful tips, and everything else required to make your transition into Santa Clara as smooth as possible.

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What to Know Before Moving to Santa Clara

1. Fabulous Weather

You won't need to pack your snow boots when you're moving to Santa Clara! Nestled within the San Francisco Bay Area, this city boasts of a Mediterranean climate characterized by long warm summers and mild, wet winters. With over 300 glorious sunshine-filled days a year, say hello to your dream outdoor lifestyle.

2. Silicon Valley Culture

Bearing the nickname "The Mission City," Santa Clara sits at the heart of Silicon Valley. You will find yourself surrounded by tech giants like Google, Apple, and Intel, as well as countless bold start-ups. Enriched with a tech-dominated culture, Santa Clara is an inspirational place to work and learn, especially for the technically inclined.

3. Sports Enthusiast's Paradise

Are you a football fan? Santa Clara is home to the Levi's Stadium, where the San Francisco 49ers play. This stadium also hosts international soccer games, major concerts, and other incredible events throughout the year. NASCAR enthusiasts can also move their gears to the nearby Sonoma Raceway!

4. Diverse Food Scene

Make way foodies, Santa Clara has a delectably diverse culinary landscape to embark upon. From tantalizing Korean BBQ to mouth-watering Mexican food, there is an international buffet at your disposal. Plus, the city sits in proximity to the California wine country. After a yummy meal, you can unwind with the finest wines.

5. Santa Clara is History-Laden

Here's something you might not know! Santa Clara has a rich history dating back to the 18th century. Pay a visit to the Mission Santa Clara de Asis, a Spanish mission founded in 1777. Also, don't miss the chance to explore the Victorian-era homes in the Old Quad, the city's oldest neighborhood.

6. Watch Out for High Cost of Living

Here's the less glamorous part: Santa Clara is pricey. The cost of living here is significantly higher than the national average, driven primarily by housing costs. However, note that higher costs often come with higher income levels, especially for those employed in the thriving local tech industry.

In conclusion, moving to Santa Clara offers you a sunny, tech-infused, exciting lifestyle with a slice of history. So start planning your move, and soak up the vibrant mix of culture, sports, food, and fine wine that Santa Clara has to offer. Always remember, this is Silicon Valley-where the impossible becomes possible, and dreams turn into reality!

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Pros and Cons of Living in Santa Clara

Pros of Living in Santa Clara

Great Weather

Santa Clara boasts a Mediterranean climate which includes mild winters and warm summers. You can expect around 300 days of sunshine per year, which makes it perfect for outdoor activities, leisure and relaxation.

Booming Tech Industry

With proximity to Silicon Valley, Santa Clara is host to many renowned tech firms and startups, providing vast opportunities for professionals in the field. This has led to tremendous economic growth and a continuing influx of young professionals.

High Quality of Life

The city offers a high quality of life with low crime rates, an above-average school system, and high employment prospects, especially for highly skilled workers. It also offers plenty of services and amenities to enhance residents' overall well-being.

Proximity to Major Cities and Attractions

Santa Clara is conveniently located near major cities like San Jose and San Francisco, as well as attractions such as the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, Napa Valley wine country, and Yosemite National Park. These provide endless options for entertainment and weekend getaways.

Rich History and Culture

Santa Clara is well-known for its rich history and culture. The Mission Santa Clara de Asis -- a Spanish mission founded in 1777 -- and Winchester Mystery House are just a few of the historical landmarks that the city has to offer.

Cons of Living in Santa Clara

High Cost of Living

The cost of living in Santa Clara is well above the national average. This is mainly due to high housing costs, although other aspects such as healthcare and groceries are also more expensive than in many other parts of the country.

Traffic and Congestion

Like many bustling areas, Santa Clara does deal with traffic congestion, especially during peak commuting hours. Commutes can be lengthy, particularly for those who work in San Francisco or other Bay Area cities.


Given its densely populated nature and heavy traffic, Santa Clara sometimes faces problems with air quality. It's not uncommon to have several "Spare the Air" days during the year where residents are advised to limit outdoor activities.

Limited Affordable Housing

Due to the tech boom and desirability of the locale, affordable housing can be difficult to find in Santa Clara, especially for newcomers or those on modest incomes. This has resulted in a decrease in home ownership and an increase in long-distance commutes.

Competitive Job Market

While the tech industry offers plentiful opportunities, this can also result in fierce competition for positions. As Silicon Valley attracts skilled individuals worldwide, one must be prepared for a competitive job market.

Modern day picture of Santa Clara, CA highlighting pros and cons of living in Santa Clara, CA

Is Santa Clara a Good Place to Live?

Santa Clara, CA is a great place to live because of its vibrant tech scene, mild weather, and excellent educational opportunities. You'll also find an array of recreational activities and cultural events to enjoy, along with beautiful parks and delicious dining options. Moreover, its diverse and friendly community truly embodies the spirit of the Golden State.

What Is Santa Clara Famous For?

Home of the 49ers

Every sports enthusiast knows that Santa Clara is synonymous with the San Francisco 49ers. The city is home to Levi's Stadium, which has been the team's home field since 2014. On game days, the city of nearly 130,000 residents becomes a sea of red and gold as fans flock to catch live action.

Santa Clara University

Founded in 1851, Santa Clara University is California's oldest operating institution of higher education. The university is a true gem in the city's heart, blending beautiful mission-style architecture, vibrant student life, and a thriving academic community. It's also known for its Jesuit roots that emphasize social justice and community service.

The Computer History Museum

In the heart of Silicon Valley, discover a treasure trove of tech history at the Computer History Museum in Santa Clara. The museum covers every significant development in the tech world, from the earliest supercomputers to modern-day smartphones. It's a perfect place to geek out and appreciate how far we've come in the digital age.

California's Great America

Adrenaline junkies and fun-seekers cannot resist a visit to California's Great America. This amusement park offers thrilling rides, water parks, and live entertainment, which attract tourists and locals alike. It hosts Halloween Haunt, a popular autumn event where the park transforms into a fun, spooky spectacle.

Capital building of Santa Clara, CA in artistic rendering

Overview of Tax Rates

Property Tax

The property tax rate in Santa Clara, CA is 0.76% as of 2023, which is significantly lower than the national average of 1.07%. This rate makes Santa Clara County among the counties with the lowest property tax rate in California.

Sales Tax

The sales tax rate in Santa Clara, CA is 9.25% as of 2023. This is higher than the national median of 6.5%, making it more costly to purchase goods in Santa Clara compared to other places in the U.S.

Income Tax

California has a progressive income tax rate, and for Santa Clara residents, the maximum rate is 13.30% as of 2023. This is one of the highest in the U.S., as the average top marginal tax rate for other states is approximately 5.3%.

Housing Market

Santa Clara, CA's housing market is notably competitive, showing higher prices than most US regions. The median home value here is approximately $1.3 million, starkly above the national median. For renters, the average monthly rent stands around $3,017, which is considerably higher than the US average. Despite these high costs, the market is in high demand due to Santa Clara's robust job market, particularly in the tech industry, and excellent amenities. Therefore, both potential buyers and renters should be prepared for a highly competitive and expensive market.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in Santa Clara, CA is significantly higher than the national average and slightly above average for California as a whole. This is reflected across various expenses such as housing, utilities and transportation. Particularly, housing costs are notably high, largely due to the city's proximity to thriving tech hubs. However, high salaries in the area somewhat offset these costs. When compared to other cities in the nation, Santa Clara is among the more expensive ones; however, the standard of living and opportunities it offers justifies this cost for many residents.

Weather & Natural Disasters

Santa Clara, CA, enjoys a Mediterranean climate characterized by mild, wet winters and warm, dry summers. The city experiences average temperatures ranging from 50degF in winter to highs of around 80degF in summer. This mild climate allows for year-round outdoor activities, making it a very conducive environment for residents and tourists. However, Santa Clara is not immune to natural disasters. While not as significantly prone as other areas in the state, it does face occasional risks from earthquakes due to its proximity to the San Andreas Fault. The region has also seen instances of wildfires and floods, albeit infrequently. So while the weather is predominantly pleasant, residents are advised to take necessary precautions against potential natural hazards.

Typical weather in Santa Clara, CA

Economy & Job Market


* Information Technology and Software Services

* Manufacturing and Semiconductor

* Retail Trade

* Health Care and Social Assistance

* Education Services

In the heart of Silicon Valley, Santa Clara, CA boasts an impressive and diverse economy. Historically, Santa Clara was an agricultural region, known for its orchards. However, the economy started to shift during the 20th century, amidst the tech boom. Now, Santa Clara embraces its status as a tech hub, with Information Technology and Software Services leading the charge. This is followed closely by Manufacturing and Semiconductor, another sector influenced by the tech industry. While these two sectors dominate the economic landscape, Santa Clara houses a notable presence in the Retail Trade, Health Care and Social Assistance, and Education Services sectors as well.

Adventure-seekers and job-hunters considering a move to Santa Clara will discover a dynamic job market. Employment rates are generally very high in Santa Clara, with the tech sector, in particular, boasting numerous opportunities. Focus your job search around the booming tech sector, especially in established companies and exciting startups. However, if tech isn't your scene, fear not. The retail, healthcare, and education sectors also offer a significant number of job opportunities. So, polish that resume, pack your bags, and get ready to dive into the vibrant job market that Santa Clara, in all its sunny Californian glory, has to offer.


Traffic and Transportation

If you're planning to strut your stuff through captivating Santa Clara, CA, don't forget your dancing shoes, but perhaps leave the car keys at home. Average commute times here are longer than a bad dinner date, sitting around 29 minutes! But don't fret! Santa Clara presents a smorgasbord of convenient public transportation options to cut down your travel hustle. The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority provides both bus and light rail services, while Caltrain and Amtrak serves those ready to take on longer distances. Tired of terra firma? You'd be glad to know that we are neighbours with the Norman Y. Mineta San Jose International Airport. With all these options, getting around Santa Clara is as easy as pie...or should I say as easy as catching the next bus!

What is the traffic like in Santa Clara, CA?

Best Neighborhoods in Santa Clara

1. Rivermark of Santa Clara

Rivermark of Santa Clara is probably one of the most vibrant neighborhoods in the city. It radiates a modern and innovative spirit that captures the essence of Santa Clara's tech-savvy presence. It houses a chic outdoor shopping plaza where you can find everything from groceries to books to home decor, and a number of great eateries. It's a perfect mix of urban convenience and suburban serenity, making it a great spot for anyone relocating to Santa Clara.

2. Mission Park

If you love historic charm and cultural vibrancy, Mission Park will suit you perfectly! This old-town district is known for its beautifully maintained historic homes, peaceful parks and its proximity to Santa Clara University. Offering much more than just eye candy, Mission Park has delightful cafes, unique boutiques, and tons of community events, giving you a warm, small-town feel in the middle of bustling Santa Clara.

3. North Santa Clara

North Santa Clara is perfect for those who crave an active and dynamic lifestyle. Home to California's Great America amusement park and Levi's Stadium where the San Francisco 49ers inspire the local pride, North Santa Clara is where all the action is. But it's not just about entertainment in this neighborhood. It's also home to a number of big tech companies, making it a hot hub of innovation.

4. West Santa Clara

Music lovers, art enthusiasts, and foodies - West Santa Clara might just be your paradise. Bursting with different kinds of restaurants, art venues and live music events, West Santa Clara is a living celebration of diversity and culture. And when it's time to unwind, the neighborhood's green spaces and peaceful paths provide a serene backdrop for quiet reflection or a leisurely stroll.

5. Central Park

As the name suggests, Central Park is for the park lover. At the heart of this neighborhood lies Santa Clara's Central Park, offering acres of green space surrounded by tranquil residential areas. Whether you are into jogging, picnicking or simply love watching the ducks on the pond, the park is always there for some recreation. Plus, the neighborhood has a top-tier library and community center, making it perfect for families.

In conclusion, every neighborhood in Santa Clara has its unique charm. From the techy Rivermark to the historic Mission Park, from the lively North Santa Clara to the artsy West Santa Clara, and from the serene Central Park to the bustling hubs of innovation, there's a Santa Clara neighborhood waiting to become your perfect new home.

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Things to Do

If you're considering packing up and making the move to Santa Clara, CA, then you're in for a treat. The city offers a perfect blend of history, tech culture, sports, arts, and outdoor fun. But with so much to see and do, where do you start? Here are seven top things you should do in your new city. These go beyond your regular Google search, offering unique experiences that bring Santa Clara's fascinating culture to life.

1. Take to Levi's Stadium

As a new resident of Santa Clara, no experience quite measures up to cheering on the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium. But beyond the football, the stadium also houses the 49ers Museum and hosts major concerts. It's a great way to spend the day, even for non-sports fans!

2. Visit Intel Museum

It's Silicon Valley, and you can't miss a trip to the Intel Museum. This high-tech eye-opener offers a peek into the world of semiconductors, computer games, and Internet technology. Best part, it's free to the public and guarantees an educational, fun-filled day!

3. Stroll through California's Great America

This amusement park is an essential attraction for any Santa Clara newbie. California's Great America featuring roller coasters, a water park, and Kidzville for young children, there's truly something for everyone!

4. Uncover the secrets of the Winchester Mystery House

Delve into the world of the bizarre at the Winchester Mystery House. This odd mansion, once home to Sarah Winchester, features stairways to nowhere, secret panels, hidden rooms, and more. It's a quirky piece of local history that offers an intriguing day out!

5. Wander the Triton Museum of Art

If you've got an art-loving soul, make the Triton Museum of Art your next Santa Clara stop. With exhibits ranging from contemporary to historical, this museum offers an immersive, cultural experience, featuring both local and international artists.

6. Discover the Agnews Developmental Center

For an excursion off the beaten path, explore the historic Agnews Developmental Center. Take a self-guided walking tour to view one of the largest collections of historic buildings in the Silicon Valley. It's a hidden gem even some locals aren't aware of!

7. Refresh at Central Park

Escape from the bustle and hit Santa Clara's Central Park. With acres of green space, a library, sports facilities, picnic areas, and more, Central Park offers calming downtime. You might even stumble upon a friendly game of cricket to watch!

In conclusion, Santa Clara offers an unrivaled blend of history, tech, arts, and outdoors for everyone to enjoy. Its charm lies in its ability to cater to every taste and interest. From high-end tech museums and adrenaline-fueling sports games to quirky historical sites and tranquil parks, there's never a dull moment. So, get ready to embark on your adventure in Santa Clara! After exploring these seven great activities, you'll not only fall in love with the city, but you'll also feel like a true local.

Things to do in Santa Clara, CA?

Find Movers for Your Santa Clara Relocation

As you embark on your new journey to Santa Clara, make your relocation smooth and hassle-free with Great Guys Moving. Our vast network of licensed and insured movers assures you of receiving high-quality, affordable service tailored to your specific needs. With just a few details about your move, we connect you with movers who can offer you a free, no-obligation quote, so the next step towards your new Californian adventure is just a click away. Your dream move to Santa Clara awaits - why not request your free quote from Great Guys Moving today?

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