Santa Monica, CA
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Living in Santa Monica


Santa Monica is a larger medium-sized coastal city (i.e. on the ocean, a bay, or inlet) located in the state of California. With a population of 93,220 people and 19 constituent neighborhoods, Santa Monica is the 80th largest community in California.

Santa Monica home prices are not only among the most expensive in California, but Santa Monica real estate also consistently ranks among the most expensive in America.

Santa Monica is a decidedly white-collar city, with fully 95.24% of the workforce employed in white-collar jobs, well above the national average. Overall, Santa Monica is a city of professionals, managers, and sales and office workers. There are especially a lot of people living in Santa Monica who work in management occupations (16.40%), art, media, and design (12.55%), and office and administrative support (10.19%).

Of important note, Santa Monica is also a city of artists. Santa Monica has more artists, designers and people working in media than 90% of the communities in America. This concentration of artists helps shape Santa Monica’s character.

Also of interest is that Santa Monica has more people living here who work in computers and math than 95% of the places in the US.

One interesting thing about the economy is that relatively large numbers of people worked from their home: 10.15% of the workforce. While this number may seem small overall, as a fraction of the total workforce this is high compared to the rest of the county. These workers are often telecommuters who work in knowledge-based, white-collar professions. For example, Silicon Valley has large numbers of people who telecommute. Other at-home workers may be self-employed people who operate small businesses out of their homes.

Santa Monica is also nautical, which means that parts of it are somewhat historic and touch the ocean or tidal bodies of water, such as inlets and bays. Such areas are often places that visitors and locals go for waterfront activities or taking in the scenery.

Like elsewhere in America, most people in Santa Monica use a private automobile to get to work. But notably, a substantial number of Santa Monica‘s citizens do make use of public transit in their daily commute, primarily riding the bus. This helps more people get to work with less air pollution, and require fewer highways to get them there.

If knowledge is power, Santa Monica is a pretty powerful place. 64.98% of the adults in Santa Monica have earned a 4-year college degree, masters degree, MD, law degree, or even PhD. Compare that to the national average of 21.84% for all cities and towns.

The per capita income in Santa Monica in 2010 was $58,252, which is wealthy relative to California and the nation. This equates to an annual income of $233,008 for a family of four. However, Santa Monica contains both very wealthy and poor people as well.

Santa Monica is a very ethnically-diverse city. The people who call Santa Monica home describe themselves as belonging to a variety of racial and ethnic groups. The greatest number of Santa Monica residents report their race to be White, followed by Asian. Santa Monica also has a sizeable Hispanic population (people of Hispanic origin can be of any race). People of Hispanic or Latino origin account for 14.55% of the city’s residents. Important ancestries of people in Santa Monica include Irish, English, Italian, and Russian.

Foreign born people are also an important part of Santa Monica's cultural character, accounting for 22.80% of the city’s population.

The most common language spoken in Santa Monica is English. Other important languages spoken here include Spanish and Chinese.