Santa Cruz, CA

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Santa Cruz, CA Real Estate Data

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 Q3 2018. Updated quarterly.
  • Setting, Housing Stock, Homeownership: 2016 (latest available). Updated annually.

Methodology:   NeighborhoodScout uses over 600 characteristics to build a neighborhood profile… Read more

Santa Cruz Housing Market Information

With 64,465 people, 22,088 houses or apartments, and a median cost of homes of $890,018, 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 54.47% of the city's housing units. Other types of housing that are prevalent in Santa Cruz include large apartment complexes or high rise apartments ( 23.68%), duplexes, homes converted to apartments or other small apartment buildings ( 10.49%), and a few row houses and other attached homes ( 8.98%).

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 ( 33.12%). A lesser amount of the housing stock also hails from before 1939 ( 21.51%). There's also some housing in Santa Cruz built between 2000 and later ( 10.05%).

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 75.45% over the last ten years, which is an average annual home appreciation rate of 5.78%, putting Santa Cruz in the top 10% 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.

Appreciation rates are so strong in Santa Cruz that despite a nationwide downturn in the housing market, Santa Cruz real estate has continued to appreciate in value faster than most communities. Looking at just the latest twelve months, Santa Cruz appreciation rates continue to be some of the highest in America, at 7.82%, which is higher than appreciation rates in 81.30% of the cities and towns in the nation. Based on the last twelve months, short-term real estate investors have found good fortune in Santa Cruz. Santa Cruz appreciation rates in the latest quarter were at -0.35%, which equates to an annual appreciation rate of -1.38%.

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 70% 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


Median Home Value:


Value Range
> $1,389,000 13.4
$1,042,001 - $1,389,000 24.5
$695,001 - $1,042,000 33.2
$556,001 - $695,000 10.0
$417,001 - $556,000 7.4
$278,001 - $417,000 5.5
$139,001 - $278,000 1.0
$70,001 - $139,000 1.2
$0 - $70,000 3.9

Very High for CA
Very High for Nation

Value Relative to Nation Value Relative to State
1.7985401459854 17.824377457405

Number Of Homes And Apartments:

Santa Cruz Appreciation Rates

Time Period Total Appreciation Avg. Annual Rate Compared To
Compared To
Latest Quarter:
2018 Q2 - 2018 Q3
Last 12 Months:
2017 Q3 - 2018 Q3
Last 2 Years:
2016 Q3 - 2018 Q3
Last 5 Years:
2013 Q3 - 2018 Q3
Last 10 Years:
2008 Q3 - 2018 Q3
Since 2000:
2000 Q1 - 2018 Q3
99.70% 3.76%
* 10 is highest

Rent & Ownership


Average Market Rent:
$2,764 / per month

Homeownership Rate

Owners 37.29
Renters 62.71
Vacant 7.87

Housing Market Details


Age of Homes

2000 or Newer 10.0
1970 - 1999 35.3
1940 - 1969 33.1
1939 or Older 21.5

Types of Homes

Single-Family 54.5
Townhomes 9.0
Small Apt. Buildings 10.5
Apt. Complexes 23.7
Mobile Homes 2.1
Other 0.3

Home Size

No Bedroom 8.30
1 Bedroom 18.65
2 Bedrooms 33.17
3 Bedrooms 28.79
4 Bedrooms 8.77
5 or more bedrooms 2.32