California is home to some of the wealthiest cities in the country, attracting affluent individuals from all over the world. These cities are known for their luxurious lifestyles, stunning homes, and unparalleled amenities.
While there are many factors that contribute to a city’s wealth, including its economy, population density, and real estate market, we’ve done our research to bring you a comprehensive list of the wealthiest cities in California.
We’ll explore these cities and provide insights into what makes them so prosperous. From Silicon Valley hubs like San Francisco and Palo Alto to coastal towns like Newport Beach and Santa Barbara, we’ll take a closer look at each city’s unique character and what it has to offer.
Whether you’re looking for a new place to call home or simply curious about how some Californians live, this blog post will provide valuable information on the state’s wealthiest cities.
Let us take you on a tour of California’s most prosperous communities.
15 Richest Cities in California
Here are the 10 most affluent places in California:
15. Los Altos
Nestled in the heart of Silicon Valley, Los Altos is a city characterized by its opulence and prestigious neighborhoods. Beautiful tree-lined streets and top-rated schools contribute to the exceptional quality of life enjoyed by its residents.
According to Zillow data, Los Altos boasts impressive home prices with a median value of approximately $3.9 million. The U.S. Census Bureau report reveals that the median household income is around $250,000+.
Los Altos has low crime rates compared to national averages; NeighborhoodScout reports that this city’s rate is safer than 43% of U.S. neighborhoods. With a population of roughly 30,700 based on the 2021 Data Commons report, residents experience an attractive blend of suburban living and modern amenities.
Piedmont, a small residential city in Alameda County, is well-known for its picturesque streets and affluent communities. Surrounded by Oakland, this enclave offers a tranquil oasis with proximity to urban amenities.
Data from Zillow shows that Piedmont’s median home price hovers around $2.5 million as of 2023, reflecting the desirability of living in this beautiful area.
The U.S. Census Bureau reports that Piedmont has an impressive median household income of approximately $250,000, making it one of the wealthiest areas in California. This city has a higher crime rate; according to AreaVibes, Piedmont’s crime rate is about 47% higher than the state average.
Piedmont’s close-knit population stands at around 11,200 residents (U.S Census Bureau) who enjoy excellent schools and recreational facilities within their community.
The job market thrives due to its proximity to San Francisco and Silicon Valley, leading to an unemployment rate of only 2.4% per AreaVibes.
Data from DataUSA suggests that Piedmont has maintained a low poverty rate of roughly 2.56%. With these attractive attributes and strong economic indicators, it’s no wonder Piedmont ranks among California’s wealthiest cities.
Ross, a charming town in Marin County, is an exclusive enclave known for its luxurious homes and picturesque landscapes. With its serene atmosphere and close proximity to San Francisco, it’s easy to see why Ross draws affluent residents.
Data from Zillow puts the median home price at approximately $3.7 million as of 2023, displaying the high demand for properties in this sought-after area.
The U.S. Census Bureau indicates that Ross has an admirable median household income of about $220,714, solidifying its status among California’s wealthiest towns. Safety remains a strong factor here; AreaVibes suggests that Ross’ crime rate is approximately 43% lower than the California average.
With a small population of around 2,500 residents based on the DataUSA report, the community cherishes its peaceful lifestyle complemented by excellent schools and parks.
12. North Gate
North Gate, a rich neighborhood in Walnut Creek, California, is known for its luxurious homes, top-notch schools, and access to various amenities.
Its excellent location near San Francisco and Oakland makes it an attractive option for affluent families seeking a balance between suburban life and city conveniences. The Realtor reports that the median home price in North Gate stands at approximately $1.5 million.
According to DataUSA, the median household income in this area reaches nearly $199,936, placing it among the most prosperous neighborhoods in the region.
Data from AreaVibes shows that North Gate enjoys a low crime rate that is 100% lower than national levels—contributing to its appeal.
The population of Walnut Creek is around 687 according to World Population Review, with residents benefiting from recreational facilities such as parks and shopping centers within close reach.
Belvedere, an idyllic city in Marin County, boasts stunning waterfront views and is often considered one of California’s most affluent communities.
Known for its beautiful homes and landscapes, this picturesque bay area attracts wealthy residents who appreciate a high quality of life. Zillow reports that the median home price in Belvedere reaches a notable $4.4 million.
With a median household income of around $247,768 according to the U.S Census Bureau, Belvedere maintains its status as one of California’s wealthiest cities. Safety is also commendable here; AreaVibes states that Belvedere’s crime rate is about 55% lower than the national average.
Despite having a small population of approximately 2,309 residents according to California Demographic, community members relish the tranquil environment complemented by exclusive amenities nearby.
10. Hidden Hills
Hidden Hills, an exclusive gated community in Los Angeles County, is known for its luxurious estates and celebrity residents. This serene haven offers privacy and boasts multimillion-dollar homes nestled amid picturesque surroundings.
Zillow data reveals that the median home price in Hidden Hills stands at approximately $5 million. The U.S Census Bureau estimates the median household income in this area to be around $250,000, which places Hidden Hills firmly among California’s most affluent communities.
Safety is impressive here; AreaVibes indicates that the crime rate is about 68% lower than the statewide average. The population size of roughly 1,700 allows residents to enjoy a close-knit community atmosphere while benefiting from easy access to Los Angeles’ amenities.
9. Norris Canyon
Norris Canyon, an upscale neighborhood in San Ramon, California, is known for its large and luxurious homes set amid picturesque landscapes.
The area offers a peaceful suburban lifestyle while remaining near major business hubs like San Francisco and Silicon Valley. As of 2023, Redfin reports that the median home price in Norris Canyon stands at around $3.3 million.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the median household income for this neighborhood reaches approximately $250,000, which solidifies Norris Canyon’s position among California’s most affluent communities.
San Ramon has a population of nearly 790 per City-Data, with Norris Canyon residents enjoying access to top-tier schools and recreational facilities close by.
8. Emerald Lake Hills
Emerald Lake Hills, a prestigious neighborhood in Redwood City, California, is renowned for its beautiful homes set against a backdrop of scenic views and verdant landscapes.
Situated between San Francisco and Silicon Valley, this area attracts affluent families who appreciate both suburban tranquility and urban conveniences. According to Zillow, the median home price in Emerald Lake Hills reaches approximately $2.5 million.
The DataUSA report reveals a high median household income for the neighborhood at around $250001—placing Emerald Lake Hills among the richest areas in California.
Per AreaVibes crime rates are notably low here—approximately 71% lower than the national average—which adds to its appeal.
7. Los Altos Hills
Nestled in the heart of Silicon Valley, Los Altos Hills offers a perfect blend of natural beauty and prosperity. This affluent town is well-known for its spacious residential properties surrounded by rolling hills and picturesque landscapes.
Los Altos Hills ranks among California’s wealthiest cities, with a median home value of over $5.9 million, according to Realtor. Residents are not only drawn to its luxurious lifestyle but also appreciate the high standard of living it provides.
Per Census data the median household income here reaches around $250,000 per year, significantly higher than the national average.
Safety remains a priority in this community as its crime rate is remarkably low when compared to other cities. Los Altos Hills’ population hovers around 8,295 people.
6. Monte Sereno
Monte Sereno, a small yet affluent city in California’s Santa Clara County, is a haven for those seeking luxury, tranquility, and picturesque surroundings.
Encompassing an area of just 1.6 square miles, this exclusive residential community is situated near the bustling Silicon Valley while maintaining its serene atmosphere. Monte Sereno ranks as one of the wealthiest cities in California.
The city’s real estate market reflects its affluence with a median home value of approximately $3.9 million, as reported by Zillow. This upscale locale offers spacious properties that are perfect for individuals searching for privacy and comfort.
Monte Sereno has a population of around 3,500 residents who enjoy an elevated standard of living. The median household income here surpasses $250,001 per year – significantly higher than both state and national averages.
Woodside, a charming town located in San Mateo County, California, is renowned for its rural atmosphere, exquisite estates, and vibrant equestrian community.
Situated within close proximity to Silicon Valley and San Francisco Bay Area’s bustling tech hub, Woodside attracts a blend of successful professionals and nature enthusiasts who seek a luxurious retreat from urban life.
This affluent area has a thriving real estate market with the median home value exceeding $3.6 million according to Zillow data. The picturesque countryside setting offers spacious properties that cater to individuals desiring both privacy and opulence.
With around 5,100 residents calling Woodside home, this exclusive enclave boasts an impressive median household income of over $212,000 per year – notably higher than national averages.
4. Portola Valley
Nestled in the heart of Silicon Valley, Portola Valley stands out as one of California’s wealthiest cities. Endowed with natural beauty and a strong sense of community, this affluent town attracts successful professionals seeking a serene environment to call home.
Data from Zillow shows that the median price for homes in Portola Valley is around $3.8 million, showcasing its status among high-income regions. Residents enjoy a comfortable lifestyle with a median household income of approximately $235,469 per year per Data USA.
With an impressively low crime rate at nearly 71% below the national average according to AreaVibsa, safety concerns are minimal within this close-knit community.
Approximately 4,600 residents reside in Portola Valley per City-Data, allowing for ample space and privacy. These statistics demonstrate the prosperity and appeal that make Portola Valley one of California’s most desirable locales for wealthy individuals and families alike.
3. Rolling Hills
Rolling Hills, an exclusive gated community located on the picturesque Palos Verdes Peninsula in Southern California, is recognized as one of the state’s wealthiest cities.
This highly desirable enclave boasts spacious ranch-style homes set amidst lush landscapes and stunning coastal views. Property values remain high, with a median home price of approximately $4.3 million according to Zillow data.
The affluence of Rolling Hills residents is evident through their median household income of about $250,000 per year per Data USA. The city prides itself on maintaining safety and security, exhibiting a crime rate that is 75% lower than the national average per Niche data.
With a population of nearly 1,702 people, the community retains its small-town charm while offering top-notch amenities.
Hillsborough, a prestigious and affluent town in San Mateo County, ranks as one of the wealthiest cities in California. Known for its stunning mansions, tree-lined streets, and excellent schools, this suburban haven provides an idyllic setting for those seeking a luxurious lifestyle.
The real estate market is highly competitive, with median home prices soaring around $5 million according to Zillow report. With a median household income of approximately $250,000 annually according to U.S Census Bureau, Hillsborough residents enjoy financial stability and comfort.
The well-maintained community also boasts a low crime rate—nearly 61% below the national average per this FBI report —providing peace of mind to its inhabitants. About 11,600 people call Hillsborough home, fostering an intimate atmosphere that upholds exclusivity.
Economically thriving, this affluent town experiences an unemployment rate of just 3%, while the poverty rate remains extremely low at 2% based on a DataUSA report.
Atherton, a small and affluent town in the San Francisco Bay Area, holds the title of one of California’s wealthiest cities. Known for its lush landscapes, sprawling estates, and proximity to major tech hubs like Silicon Valley, Atherton stands out as a premier choice for those seeking luxury and convenience.
The robust real estate market features a median home price of approximately $7.5 million based on Zillow data, reflecting the opulence of this prestigious community. The high socioeconomic status of Atherton’s residents is evident through their impressive median household income of around $250,000 per year per U.S Census Bureau.
This serene haven offers a secure environment with a crime rate nearly 60% below the national average (source: Niche). Home to roughly 6,915 residents according to Data Commons.