The Top 10 Cities To Raise a Family in Southern California

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Did you know that two of the top three cities to raise a family in southern California are right here in Los Angeles county? At least, according to a new study from

The findings were based on research of cities that had a population of more than 25,000 people and the analysis focused on five key factors: education, commute time, household type, residency, and housing costs.


Specifically, the study took into account metrics such as the cities with the highest percentage of adults who earned a high school diploma or better, the percentage of family households with children under 18 (so as to hone in on areas with the largest kid population), and the percentage of residents still living in the same home they were a year ago to find those areas with the lowest turnover rate (i.e. stability)

Here’s how the top ten broke down for all of SoCal:

1. Poway
2. Manhattan Beach
3. South Pasadena
4. Lake Forest
5. Moorpark
6. Rancho Santa Margarita
7. Rancho Palos Verdes
8. Cypress
9. Walnut
10. Santee

Furthermore, in terms of “small cities” (less than a 25,000 population), L.A. County netted all of the top 3:

1. San Marino
2. La Cañada Flintridge
3. El Segundo

Now every study obviously has it’s merits and it’s deficiencies, and I’d love to understand more of the context behind how these factors were evaluated, and how manipulation of any of the dials

For example, if I lived in one of the top 5 cities, but my commute was going to suck, how much would it affect my families overall satisfaction level (and would it be worth moving to another city further down the list?). But I guess that’s another study, isn’t it?

That said, I sure as hell wouldn’t mind bringing up my (future) kids in Manhattan Beach. You know, assuming I can afford it.



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