Housing and Relocation Guide

San Diego County encompasses more than 4,300 square miles, so as you might guess, there is no easy way to characterize the entire housing market.

But if you’re considering moving to San Diego or you already live here, and you’re considering buying another home, there are some useful things to know.

Let’s start with price trends.  As of late 2022, Zillow reported that the average value of homes in San Diego County is around $890,000. That means 50% of all housing stock in the area is worth more, and 50% is worth less.  In the past year, the median sales price was up 7% to $915,000 for detached homes and 6% to $600,000 for attached homes.

As is the case in much of California, the forecast for 2023 indicates a supply shortage and a demand increase for housing driven primarily by millennials looking to enter the home market.

San Diego is in the top 20% nationally for real estate appreciation. Data shows that in the past 10 years, San Diego real estate appreciated by 125% or an annual average appreciation rate of more than 8%.  As interest rates remain high and prices knock homebuyers out of the market, the upward pressure is expected to drop for the foreseeable future. 

That’s the current state of the regional housing market by the numbers.  But there are also several reasons why San Diego remains a popular place to live.  

First, you simply can’t beat the weather anywhere else in the world.  San Diego is blessed with more than 260 days of sunshine and a temperate Mediterranean climate year-round.  It is strategically placed close to Mexico and convenient to Los Angeles, as well as a short flight to Las Vegas and San Francisco.  

San Diego is also culturally diverse, welcoming people from throughout the world who infuse the region with a richness that resonates throughout 100+ neighborhoods.  These small enclaves create unique ways to explore and discover many vibrant ways of life.  That extends to the city’s LGBTQ+ communities as well.  San Diego is an open and inviting destination for all people and all walks of life.

Living in San Diego isn’t particularly cheap, but the trade-off of pristine beaches, a plethora of world-class cultural attractions, and a cutting-edge culinary scene bring value to everyone who lives here.  The area is a hotspot for several industries, including biotechnology, healthcare, and technology.  

Often, the talent these sectors need is found on campus at the University of San Diego in La Jolla or at the top-ranked San Diego State University, where young graduates with big ideas and an abundance of energy drive a thriving jobs sector.  This may help explain why the median age of San Diegans is only 32.

San Diego is also home to a deep-water port and shipbuilding yards. The city is home to the world’s largest naval fleet.  In turn, around 15,000 local businesses rely on contracts with the Department of Defense.

Finally, San Diego is also a relatively safe city.  It still has its share of crime, but overall, the rate is about 15% lower than most comparable locations.