Are you looking for a budget-friendly place to live in California? Despite its reputation for being expensive, there are plenty of affordable cities to choose from. Whether you’re a student, young professional or retiree, there is a city that can meet your needs with less money. From Eureka on the Northern coast to San Diego on the Southern border, California’s diverse geography offers something for everyone. So, if you’re on a budget, check out our list of the cheapest places to live in California and enjoy all the perks of the Golden State without overspending.

Top Cities in California

Here is a list of the cheapest places to live in California:


Eureka is a charming city settled on the coast of northern California. It is known for its affordability and relaxed way of life. The cost of living in Eureka is relatively low compared to other cities in California. So, it is an attractive option for those looking to stretch their budget. Eureka is an ideal destination with plenty of opportunities for hiking, fishing and camping in surrounding natural areas. Moreover, Eureka is a great place to call home for those seeking an affordable and exciting lifestyle.


Stockton is a thriving city located in the heart of California’s Central Valley. One of its main advantages is its affordability, with lower housing and living costs than many other cities in California. Additionally, Stockton is home to a number of educational institutions including San Joaquin Delta College and the University of the Pacific. Moreover, it has cultural attractions such as the Haggin Museum and the Stockton Symphony. Overall, Stockton is a great choice for those looking for a lively and affordable city with plenty of amenities.


Clovis is a small city located in Fresno County, California. Clovis offers a charming and friendly atmosphere with a variety of shops and restaurants. The city is also home to the Clovis Rodeo, a popular event held every April. Moreover, it has numerous parks and recreational opportunities. However, small in size but Clovis is growing rapidly, attracting new residents with its strong community spirit and high quality of life.


Sacramento is the capital of California, is a bustling city with a rich history and culture. It is home to a number of important landmarks, including the California State Capitol Building and the Crocker Art Museum. In addition, a thriving restaurant and nightlife scene makes it more unique. Moreover, Sacramento is also known for outdoor recreational opportunities, such as the American River Parkway and the nearby Sierra Nevada mountains. Overall, Sacramento is a great place for those who are in search of a mix of urban and natural experiences.


Vallejo is a city located in Solano County, California. It is famous for its rich history as a major naval shipyard, as well as its exciting arts scene. Vallejo is home to several art galleries and cultural institutions including the Empress Theatre and the Vallejo Naval and Historical Museum. Furthermore, the city also offers a variety of outdoor recreational opportunities including hiking trails and waterfront parks. Overall, Vallejo is a great place to live for those seeking a mix of culture, history, and natural beauty. So if you’re considering living here take a look at the apartments for rent in vallejo ca


Redlands is a city located in the Inland Empire region of Southern California. It offers affordable housing and a high quality of life. Additionally, the city is also home to several higher education institutions including the University of Redlands. Outdoor activity fans can enjoy hiking and biking in the nearby San Bernardino Mountains. Moreover, history fans can explore the city’s rich cultural heritage including the Kimberly Crest House and Gardens and the Redlands Bowl.


Oxnard is a coastal city located in Ventura County, California. It offers affordable housing, a diverse population and a mild Mediterranean climate. In addition, the city is known for its beautiful beaches including Oxnard Beach Park and Silver Strand Beach. Furthermore, Oxnard also boasts a thriving agricultural industry, producing strawberries, raspberries and other fruits and vegetables. Moreover, Outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy kayaking, surfing and fishing in the nearby Channel Islands National Park. At the end, art lovers can visit the Carnegie Art Museum or attend the Oxnard Salsa Festival.


Anaheim is located in Orange County, California. It is popular for being the home of Disneyland, one of the most popular theme parks in the world. In addition, Anaheim also offers a variety of shopping, dining and entertainment options. The city’s central location in Orange County makes it a convenient base for exploring nearby attractions. Top attractions include the beaches of Newport and Huntington, as well as the historic city of Santa Ana.

Factors to Consider

There are a number of factors to consider when choosing a cheap place to live in California. The cost of living or touring in California is high. So, it is important to find a place that is affordable. Here are some important advices to consider when looking for a cheap place to live in California:

1.   The cost of housing

Housing costs are one of the biggest expenses in California. You will want to find a place that is affordable and has enough space for your needs.

2.  The cost of transportation

Transportation costs can add up quickly in California. If you can find a place that is close to public transportation, you will save money on transportation costs.

3.  The cost of food and other necessities

Food and other necessities can be expensive in California. Look for the places or restaurants that are offering low rates and quality food. So, you can save your budget.

4. The climate and weather conditions

The climate and weather conditions in California can vary greatly depending on the region you live in. However, you need to find a place that has the climate and weather conditions that you prefer.

5. The facilities by the community

When choosing a cheap place to live in California, you need to consider the amenities and features offered by the community. Some communities offer great amenities like pools, parks and recreation centers which can make your life more enjoyable.

Tips to enjoy the Golden State-California

There are plenty of things that you can do in order to make the most out of living in a cheap place in California. Here are just a few ideas:

1. Get to know your neighbors: This is especially important if you live in an apartment complex or other type of shared housing arrangement. By getting to know your neighbors, you can take advantage of any cost-saving opportunities that they are aware of. Additionally, you will have someone to rely on if you ever need assistance with something.

2. Live below your means: Just because you are living in a cheap place doesn’t mean that you have to spend all of your money. So, spending less will help you to save up for things that are truly important like travel, retirement or investing in property.

3. Low-cost entertainment options: There are plenty of free and low-cost entertainment options available in California. It offers hiking and camping in the great outdoors to visiting world-class museums and attractions. However, by taking advantage of these options you can save money on your overall cost of living.

4. Use public transportation: It is often much cheaper than driving yourself around especially if you live in a major urban area like Los Angeles or San Francisco. Moreover, by using public transportation you can save yourself a lot of money on gasoline and car maintenance costs over time.


California is known for its high cost of living but there are still plenty of affordable towns and cities that offer a great quality of life. It has small-town charmers like Chico and El Centro and larger urban areas like Riverside and Sacramento. In addition, there are many places in California where you can get the most out of your stay. However, you are looking to settle down permanently or just visiting, this is a great place for you.