These Are The 10 Worst Santa Clarita Suburbs For 2018

We used science and data to determine which Santa Clarita suburbs are the real pits.

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Not everyone is cut out for city life. Some people would prefer to live in the cities and towns that surround Santa Clarita.

So the question arises, do the suburbs maintain a semblance of the larger-than-life appeal of their more famous neighbor?

Today, we’ll use science and data to determine which Santa Clarita ‘burbs need a little tender loving care – the sore thumbs of the Santa Clarita area if you will. Realistically, you can’t expect all the suburbs to live up to Santa Clarita proper, although San Marino certainly tries.

Of course, not all suburbs of Santa Clarita are created equally, which is precisely why we set out to find the best ones. So without further ado…

We examined the 18 biggest suburbs of Santa Clarita to find out the worst places to live. And while you won’t necessarily find them on the worst places to live in California lists, these ten places are a little too far downwind of Santa Clarita in terms of quality of life.

Here are the 10 worst suburbs around Santa Clarita for 2018:

  1. Palmdale (Photos)
  2. Lancaster (Photos)
  3. Los Angeles (Photos)
  4. Fillmore (Photos)
  5. San Fernando (Photos)
  6. Glendale (Photos)
  7. Pasadena (Photos)
  8. Thousand Oaks (Photos)
  9. Simi Valley (Photos)
  10. Moorpark (Photos)

Read on to see how we determined the places around Santa Clarita that need a pick-me-up. And remember, don’t blame the messenger.

Or, if you’re thinking of moving to elsewhere in California check out the best places in California overall or the worst.

And remember, there are some good places to live around Santa Clarita too.

Editor’s Note: If you see a slight difference between the worst in state rankings and this suburb ranking, it’s because of the methodology. We needed a way to include more places, so we eliminated crime and commute times as criteria for this analysis.

For more California reading, check out:

Determining The Worst Suburbs Around Santa Clarita for 2018

To figure out how bad a place is to live in, we only needed to know what kinds of things people like and then decide what cities have the least amount of those things.

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using the most recent American Community Survey data, this is the criteria we used:

  • High unemployment rate
  • Low median household incomes
  • Low population density (no things to do)
  • Low home values
  • A lot of high school drop outs
  • High poverty
  • High rate of uninsured families

FYI: We defined a suburb as being within 30 miles of Santa Clarita.

Additionally, we limited the analysis to places that have over 12,000 people. This left us with a grand total of 18 suburbs to evaluate around Santa Clarita.

We ranked each place with scores from 1 to 18 in each category, where 1 was the “worst”.

Next, we averaged the rankings for each place to create a quality of life index.

And finally, we crowned the city with the worst quality of life index the “Worst Suburb near Santa Clarita.” We’re lookin’ at you, Palmdale.

Read on below to learn more about what it’s like to live in the worst of the worst. Or skip to the end to see the list of all the suburbs ranked from worst to best.

1. Palmdale

Palmdale, California

Source: Public domain

Population: 156,823
Unemployment Rate: 11.6%
Median Home Price: $207,400
Median Income: $52,801
More on Palmdale: Data | Jobs

We’ll get the ball rolling with Palmdale, the absolute worst place to live around Santa Clarita according to the data.

And in the world of worst rankings, Palmdale beat the competition pretty handily thanks to scoring in the bottom 15% in three major categories. Income is the 3rd worst in the Santa Clarita area, and to make matters worse, the city ranks 2nd worst when it comes to home values.

But hey, at least it’s cheap to live there. But there’s a reason for that… it’s Palmdale.

You won’t feel bad about not having a great income for the area, there aren’t a bunch of places to spend your money anyway.

2. Lancaster

Lancaster, California

Population: 159,651
Unemployment Rate: 9.6%
Median Home Price: $186,000
Median Income: $47,684
More on Lancaster: Data | Jobs

Welcome to Lancaster. Home to KMart, Big Lots, and a lot of gas stations.

This city is 27.4 miles to Santa Clarita. Income levels here are the 1st lowest in the metro area, where families bring in about $47,684 a year, which doesn’t go a long ways even on a shoestring budget.

But on the bright side, there are a lot of fast food joints in the area.

3. Los Angeles

Los Angeles, California

Population: 3,918,872
Unemployment Rate: 9.2%
Median Home Price: $496,300
Median Income: $51,538
More on Los Angeles: Data | Jobs

Back up the highway we go for the third worst Santa Clarita suburb you can live in. You might have expected to see Los Angeles on here. While the cost of living is low, your entertainment and work options are limited. And that’s an understatement.

In terms of numbers, it’s in the worst 15% for insurance, and the adult high school drop out rate is poor compared to other Santa Clarita suburbs.

But at least there are nice parks to bring the kids during the day.

4. Fillmore

Fillmore, California

Population: 15,391
Unemployment Rate: 7.6%
Median Home Price: $320,600
Median Income: $55,512
More on Fillmore: Data | Jobs

If you live in Fillmore, most likely you struggle to make ends meet every month. It ranks as the 4th lowest Santa Clarita suburb when it comes to residents making money.

Not only that, but this is the 9th worst unemployed suburb you can live in if you choose to live near Santa Clarita. Remember, we looked at 18 cities for this study.

Fillmore is about 23.5 miles to downtown.

5. San Fernando

San Fernando, California

Source: Public domain

Population: 24,396
Unemployment Rate: 8.6%
Median Home Price: $343,500
Median Income: $55,734
More on San Fernando: Data | Jobs

San Fernando has the distinction of being a Santa Clarita suburb. Which means that’s about all it has going for it.

All snarkiness aside, San Fernando has the 4th lowest home values in the metro Santa Clarita area, where the median price is $343,500. To put that into perspective, in San Marino, the median income is $139,792, which is the best in the area.

San Fernando has an unemployment rate of 8.6% which ranks 5th worst.

6. Glendale

Glendale, California

Source: Public domain

Population: 197,895
Unemployment Rate: 9.2%
Median Home Price: $639,700
Median Income: $56,069
More on Glendale: Data | Jobs

Glendale has 197,895 residents that probably know it’s a pretty crummy place to live when you look at the data. (Or, if you’ve ever been there, you don’t need to look at the data.)

Incomes are towards the bottom and the poverty rate sits at 14.7%.

7. Pasadena

Pasadena, California

Source: Public domain

Population: 140,268
Unemployment Rate: 7.1%
Median Home Price: $649,800
Median Income: $73,029
More on Pasadena: Data | Jobs

Ah, Pasadena. You rank as the 7th worst place to live around Santa Clarita.

It’s the place with the 11th most out of work residents in the Santa Clarita metro area (7.1%).

8. Thousand Oaks

Thousand Oaks, California

Population: 128,623
Unemployment Rate: 7.9%
Median Home Price: $637,100
Median Income: $101,045
More on Thousand Oaks: Data | Jobs

Thousand Oaks is a city about 26.0 miles from Santa Clarita, but Santa Clarita probably wishes it was further away. It ranks as the 8th worst burb for 2018.

You’d be hard pressed to find a worse place to live. Thousand Oaks has the 12th most uninsured people, 14th worst incomes, and has the 8th highest unemployment rate (7.9%) in the entire Santa Clarita metro area.

Homes only cost $637,100 for a reason. That’s cheap for Santa Clarita standards.

9. Simi Valley

Simi Valley, California

Source: Public domain

Population: 126,126
Unemployment Rate: 6.2%
Median Home Price: $472,700
Median Income: $91,196
More on Simi Valley: Data | Jobs

If you absolutely have to live near Santa Clarita, then Simi Valley might be a place for you to consider as it’s only the 9th worst Santa Clarita suburb.

About 6.2% of residents are out of work.

10. Moorpark

Moorpark, California

Population: 35,594
Unemployment Rate: 6.6%
Median Home Price: $567,300
Median Income: $100,457
More on Moorpark: Data | Jobs

Rounding out the ten worst Santa Clarita suburbs to call home is Moorpark.

Located 22.7 miles outside the city, Moorparks is a real pit when you look at the data. Its residents have the 12th highest unemployment rate (6.6%), and poverty is far above the area average.

The areas around Santa Clarita where the dream is more of a nightmare for 2018

Well there you have it — the worst of the ‘burbs surrounding Santa Clarita with Palmdale casting itself ahead of the pack.

As we mentioned earlier, the suburbs around Santa Clarita aren’t all bad. San Marino takes the cake as the best place to live around Santa Clarita.

For more California reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Worst Santa Clarita Suburbs

Rank City Population Unemployment Rate Median Home Price Median Income
1 Palmdale 156,823 11.6% $207,400 $52,801
2 Lancaster 159,651 9.6% $186,000 $47,684
3 Los Angeles 3,918,872 9.2% $496,300 $51,538
4 Fillmore 15,391 7.6% $320,600 $55,512
5 San Fernando 24,396 8.6% $343,500 $55,734
6 Glendale 197,895 9.2% $639,700 $56,069
7 Pasadena 140,268 7.1% $649,800 $73,029
8 Thousand Oaks 128,623 7.9% $637,100 $101,045
9 Simi Valley 126,126 6.2% $472,700 $91,196
10 Moorpark 35,594 6.6% $567,300 $100,457
11 West Hollywood 35,661 7.3% $642,200 $61,127
12 Santa Monica 92,247 8.3% $1,086,300 $82,123
13 South Pasadena 25,936 6.2% $876,900 $84,593
14 Beverly Hills 34,627 8.0% $1,900,500 $100,630
15 Malibu 12,853 6.1% $1,802,800 $116,904
16 Agoura Hills 20,689 5.3% $699,200 $114,313
17 Calabasas 24,091 5.2% $926,800 $111,111
18 San Marino 13,324 4.3% $1,518,400 $139,792

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.


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