Santa Cruz, CA Real Estate Market

Source & Methodology

Analytics built by:   Location, Inc.

Raw data sources:   American Community Survey (U.S. Census Bureau), U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Federal Housing Finance Agency.

Date(s) & Update Frequency:
  • Home Values, Rents: Reflects Q4 2020. Updated quarterly.
  • Setting, Housing Stock, Homeownership: 2019 (latest available). Updated annually.

Methodology:   NeighborhoodScout uses over 600 characteristics to build a neighborhood profile… Read more about Scout's Real Estate Data

Santa Cruz, CA Housing Market Trends

With a population of 64,608, 22,579 total housing units (homes and apartments), and a median house value of $879,976, Santa Cruz house prices are not only among the most expensive in California, Santa Cruz real estate also is some of the most expensive in all of America.

Single-family detached homes are the single most common housing type in Santa Cruz, accounting for 54.72% of the city's housing units. Other types of housing that are prevalent in Santa Cruz include large apartment complexes or high rise apartments ( 22.86%), duplexes, homes converted to apartments or other small apartment buildings ( 11.67%), and a few row houses and other attached homes ( 8.75%).

People in Santa Cruz primarily live in small (one, two or no bedroom) single-family detached homes. Santa Cruz has a mixture of owner-occupied and renter-occupied housing.

There is a lot of housing in Santa Cruz built from 1970 to 1999 so parts of town may have that "Brady Bunch" look of homes popular in the '70s and early '80s, although some of these houses were built up through the early '90s as well. There is also a lot of housing in Santa Cruz built between 1940-1969 ( 33.11%). A lesser amount of the housing stock also hails from before 1939 ( 18.12%). There's also some housing in Santa Cruz built between 2000 and later ( 9.49%).

Santa Cruz Home Appreciation Rates

In the last 10 years, Santa Cruz has experienced some of the highest home appreciation rates of any community in the nation. Santa Cruz real estate appreciated 63.38% over the last ten years, which is an average annual home appreciation rate of 5.03%, putting Santa Cruz in the top 20% nationally for real estate appreciation. If you are a home buyer or real estate investor, Santa Cruz definitely has a track record of being one of the best long term real estate investments in America through the last ten years.

Over the last year, Santa Cruz appreciation rates have trailed the rest of the nation. In the last twelve months, Santa Cruz's appreciation rate has been 2.07%, which is lower than appreciation rates in most communities in America. In the latest quarter, NeighborhoodScout's data show that house appreciation rates in Santa Cruz were at 1.21%, which equates to an annual appreciation rate of 4.95%.

Notably, Santa Cruz's appreciation rate in the latest quarter is one of the lowest in America.

Relative to California, our data show that Santa Cruz's latest annual appreciation rate is lower than 80% of the other cities and towns in California.

One very important thing to keep in mind is that these are average appreciation rates for the city. Individual neighborhoods within Santa Cruz differ in their investment potential, sometimes by a great deal. Fortunately, you can use NeighborhoodScout to pinpoint the exact neighborhoods in Santa Cruz - or in any city or town - that have the best track record of real estate appreciation, by the latest quarter, the last year, 2 years, 5 years, 10 years, or even since 2000, to assist you in making the best Santa Cruz real estate investment or home purchase decisions.

Average Home Values

 
info

Median Home Value:
$879,976

Santa Cruz, CA HOME PRICES

> $1,125,000
22.6%
22.6%
$844,001 - $1,125,000
33.7%
33.7%
$563,001 - $844,000
23.3%
23.3%
$450,001 - $563,000
5.6%
5.6%
$338,001 - $450,000
5.3%
5.3%
$225,001 - $338,000
4.1%
4.1%
$113,001 - $225,000
1.9%
1.9%
$56,001 - $113,000
0.8%
0.8%
$0 - $56,000
2.6%
2.6%
0.0% 100.0%
% OF HOMES
Value Relative To State

Very High for Nation

Very High for CA

Value Relative To Nation

Number Of Homes And Apartments:
22,579

Santa Cruz Appreciation Rates

 
Time Period Total Appreciation Avg. Annual Rate Compared To
CA*
Compared To
America*
Latest Quarter:
2020 Q3 - 2020 Q4
Last 12 Months:
2019 Q4 - 2020 Q4
Last 2 Years:
2018 Q4 - 2020 Q4
Last 5 Years:
2015 Q4 - 2020 Q4
Last 10 Years:
2010 Q4 - 2020 Q4
Since 2000:
2000 Q1 - 2020 Q4
103.71% 3.45%
3
8
* 10 is highest

Rent & Ownership

 
info

Average Market Rent:
$3,654 / per month

Homeownership Rate

Owners
39.6%
39.6%
Renters
60.4%
60.4%
Vacant
8.1%
8.1%
0.0% 100.0%
% OF HOMES

Housing Market Details

 
info

Age of Homes

2000 or Newer
9.5%
9.5%
1970 - 1999
39.3%
39.3%
1940 - 1969
33.1%
33.1%
1939 or Older
18.1%
18.1%
0.0% 100.0%
% OF HOMES

Types of Homes

Single-Family
54.7%
54.7%
Townhomes
8.7%
8.7%
Small Apt. Buildings
11.7%
11.7%
Apt. Complexes
22.9%
22.9%
Mobile Homes
1.8%
1.8%
Other
0.2%
0.2%
0.0% 100.0%
% OF HOMES

Home Size

No Bedroom
9.9%
9.9%
1 Bedroom
18.2%
18.2%
2 Bedrooms
32.1%
32.1%
3 Bedrooms
29.7%
29.7%
4 Bedrooms
8.5%
8.5%
5 or more bedrooms
1.6%
1.6%
0.0% 100.0%
% OF HOMES