10 Cheapest Beach Towns in California

Undeniably, no one would want to miss the exquisite coastline lifestyle, fresh air, antique shopping, and culture when doing house hunting in California. Despite your desire to enjoy the coastal lifestyle, you probably wouldn’t want to break into your bank.

With over 800 miles of attractive quintessential sun-soaked beaches, thousands of people dream to live in California. Whether it’s northern, Southern or Central, everyone has plenty of reasons for opting to live in a state with endless ocean views.

Despite California being renowned for its unsurpassed experience, it’s also associated with the high cost of living. Forbes indicates that nearly a quarter of the richest Americans live in California, implying some towns are quite expensive. However, that doesn’t mean it’s entirely impossible to find an affordable and gorgeous beach town to accommodate you.

According to real estate experts, your dream to live in one of the cheapest towns in California is about to happen. Scroll through the content and unveil some of the cheapest and most beautiful beach towns to live in California.

A photo of the pier in Long Beach. People line u along both sides of the pier, mostly fishing. Condos can be seen in the back, along with many palm trees

1.    Long Beach

For years now, Long Beach has been underrated by many people. However, this town holds ambiance in being friendly, relaxed, and cheaper. If you are looking for a town near a relaxed coastline with unique vibes, Long Beach is the best option. Rich in art, music, and culture, Long Beach has people from all economic classes and subcultures, including fantastic book nerds and rockabilly fans.

Being a suburb in California, Long Beach has affordable home prices, at approximately $449,800 compared to other states. Long Beach has proven to be one of California’s best cheapest beach towns to raise a family and connect with great neighborhoods.

East Village in Long Beach has unmatched entertainment, clubs, and restaurants for professionals and singles. Park Village is the best for young families offering superb homes, parks, and a community of low-income rates.

2.    Santa Barbara

Located between the steep hills of the Santa Ynez Mountains and the Pacific Ocean, Santa Barbara is a charming, peaceful city to live in. Always filled with Spanish culture and beautiful weather, you don’t have to ditch deep into your pocket to enjoy the best life here. Life in Santa Barbara is stunningly relaxing, with friendly neighborhoods full of welcoming enthusiasm.

Santa Barbara has been experiencing massive development to perfectly handle population density in the recent past. This town dearly values its people through a good education climate, thus bringing forth great young professionals. With affordable education utilities, their education needs are adequately covered if you have a young family.

3.    Crescent City

Located 20 miles south of Oregon Border, the Crescent City has distinguished coastal views and accommodative weather. With great winds from the beach to keep your body cool all time, this town evokes lucrative feelings within your budget.

Being far from central cities in California, the Crescent City has an accommodative cost of living. It has under 7,000 residents, making rents and prices reasonable for everyone. The cost of living in Crescent City is 2% higher than the national average but 28% lower than the California average.

The Crescent City is the most appropriate for nature lovers and is a town with little sociability and a conservative lifestyle. Crescent City’s coastline is filled with spectacular redwood trees that enhance its full beauty.

4.    Ventura

If you are looking for a cheap beach town in California with scenic views, warm weather, and vibrant culture, Ventura is a lucrative place to opt for. With thriving arts, mountain views, and entertainment options, Ventura is known for maintaining a low cost of living over the years.

Averagely home prices approximate $485,000. The real estate market in this town is not hot. You can easily buy a home without breaking into your bank. Ventura holds a population of around 108,000, including the old and young.

Ventura offers good access to education and safety to scholars. The town has minimal traffic with free parking downtown. Besides, Ventura has delicious, authentic, and diverse foodstuffs. There is plenty of seafood, Americana, sushi, Cuban and American cuisine if you are a fanatic of trying different cultural foods.

5.    Laguna Beach

If you have been dreaming of living in Laguna Beach, now’s the time to move. This town is hard to leave as every day is a vacation day. There is a lot to explore in Laguna Beach town without spending fortunes.

Laguna is founded with a sense of community with many organizations. The town holds something for everyone. Most of the houses are built near the beach or by manicured parks overlooking the beauty of the ocean.

Although some sections in Laguna are expensive, some of the cheapest neighborhoods to live in include Portafina, the top of the world, Arch Beach Heights, and Laguna Canyon, to highlight a few.

A photo of the ocean in Laguna Beach.  Grass and a black fence border the ocean. In the distance are two hills with a lot of houses on them

6.    San Pedro

Lying in a cozy harbor, San Pedro is located at the southernmost end of Los Angeles, CA. With the mixed environment of the suburbs, the town offers exclusive coffee shops, restaurants, and parks. Residents in San Pedro rent their residences with most professionals or young families.

San Pedro has a picturesque ocean, waterfront community, and vintage eateries. With the recent revitalization period in San Pedro, today’s home renting prices offer something for everyone. It doesn’t matter if you want an average lifestyle; you can get the best with what you have.

San Pedro is always filled with a charming small community feel. The condominium developments, Caribbean-colored homes, delightful shops, and hard-packed streets make everything feel at home.

7.    Eureka

Eureka is one of California’s cheapest beach towns that offers charming and eclectic seaport views. With unlimited sightseeing opportunities, recreational hubs, and museums, it offers the Carson Mansion Family an association feeling.

If you are craving coastal experience for a lifetime, Eureka delivers an eminent lifestyle. The town is small but with tons of activities to attend, thus offering a great combination of culture and nature. The median home price in Eureka is $362 000.

Eureka features modern boutiques, restaurants, historic places, and charming modern work opportunities. Besides, it’s a home to lush forests, a path to the famous Redwood highway, sequoia garden, and Park Forest.

8.    Oxnard

If you wonder whether Oxnard is the best place for you to live, it depends on what is crucial to you. However, with a cool environment, lots of fun activities, upgraded shopping centers, and schools, Oxnard claims to be the best town to live in.

The town has pronounced neighborhoods to meet new friends safely. It’s 17% safer for networking than all other cities in the United States. Crime rates are 40% lower than the California average. Besides, if you would love to extend your education, Oxnard has many universities and colleges.

Oxnard offers a variety of opportunities to young professionals. The average salary is $47 941 but varies in different fields of economy. The median home price is $632,000, with a home value 21% higher than in California.

9.    Sam Simeon

If you are looking for cool and great beach towns in California, Sam Simeon offers outstanding and unspoiled beauty. A secluded location with natural oceanic splendor, beautiful historical landmarks, and distinguished outdoor activities, this town has much to explore.

Although Sam Simeon itself might sound luxurious, it’s one of the most affordable beach towns to live in California. This town offers a moderate climate with satisfying sunshine, mild winter, and a few rainy days on the Pacific Ocean.

With a population of 583 residents, this town offers the perfect suburban feel, whether you have a young family or are single. The town has a well-knit community with more space for opportunities and money. The livability at San Simeon score is affordable with utilities, housing costs, and low crime rates. Housing rates are approximately $731,000 on average.

10.    Arcata

With beautiful buildings, Arcata obtained this official name in 1980, meaning “where there is a lagoon.” Most people like Arcata due to its livability, affordable cost of living, and easy lifestyle with expansive forests.

Arcata greatly promotes intellectual and youthful life. The town adequately covers your desires with a breathtaking unspoiled environment, diverse culture, welcoming neighbors, and art. The town has profound budget boutiques, book stores, and eateries if you love shopping.

Most residents rent homes. The average monthly rate for furnished accommodation adds up to $1589.

A photo of a dead tree with a sign hanging on it that says CALIFORNIA

Wrapping Up

Undeniably, living by the beach in California could mean getting deeper into your pockets. It means spending fortunes on world-class lifestyle, seafood, entertainment, boutiques, and surf spots.

However, you don’t have to be a billionaire to live in California. California has something for everyone despite their economic status. Don’t allow your dreams to live near scenic beach wonders slide away.

So, if you want to turn your desires into reality, with fantastic sceneries, charming beaches, and positive neighborhood vibes for a lifetime, California is the place to be. You can still enjoy enviable coastal life with unlimited surfing, sand, and sun within your budget.

We live once, right? The time is now to achieve your coastal lifestyle dreams for a long-awaited time. All you need is to choose the best town from the list above, find the ideal accommodation, pack your things, and get your way to one of these California beach towns.

Related: Cheapest Places to Live in California

Related: 17 Pros and Cons of Living in California