The best place to live is relative to the individuals, families. Our best place to live is where our kids can be safer (no place is 100% safe these days) in school, neighborhood, where the people are nice, considerate, peaceful, less troublesome. Well, we found our place, although it’s not the best, but we’re happy with our neighbors and especially our children are happy with their friends and teachers in school.
They said California is a melting pot of cultures, I believe so, but where do these melting pots are, we need to find out before we make a decision to where we want to raise our children. Everyone has his/her own ideas about which types communities they want to live or raise children in. The tools we need to have to find the zip codes with all the right criteria are the websites below. To us, the best place to settle in Silicon Valley should fit these criteria:
1. Safe environment for our children and better education.
would give us some ideas how the particular school is doing academically compares with others – The higher the rating the better, 9 or 10 is desirable.
2. Not too far distance from our work places.
The traffic is horrid everywhere in the bay area, if we have to drive to work, closer distance is better and car pool if possible.
3. Not too far from mass transit stations.
There are mass transits like BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit), ACE (Altamont Commuter Express), Caltrain. If our home and work are close to the train stations, we can take train to/from work, some companies even have programs for employees to deduct train fares from income tax.
4. Not too close (noisy) but yet too far from Freeways (quick and easy access).
Many people live so far away from Freeways or Highways which take a long time to go anywhere, these days with gas prices are not going any lower, driving locally costs money.
5. Not too far but yet too close to Supermarkets and Shopping Centers (gas cost).
Again, not too far from shopping centers or supermarkets to save gas and NOT too close to suffer from the noise and traffic.
6. Where the City and County tax is the lowest.
The sales taxes are actually different in many counties, cities, Union City is not a very good city and the tax is higher than anywhere else. Living in these area will make a dent in the check book after a while.
So, I’m sure, everyone wants to belong somewhere they feel comfortable with, use the links below to find out where you want to live or raise children. If people who’ve lost their houses in the housing bubble burst looked at these data before they purchased or invest in their homes, they would never spend $500,000 for a house where the zipcode average income is $15,000 a year. People who live in Oakland Hills may not let their kids to go to the district public schools, not because they can afford private schools, but because of their kids safety and school potentials.
Sometimes, the zipcode forces the kids to go to a certain schools, and among those schools, none of them is desirable although it’s not an undesirable zipcode.
We used to love a zipcode where the neighborhood is great, but the schools for the kids are not so great. Do some homework and have a great life in Silicon Valley. These links below will show the neighborhood average ages, we want our kids to have same age friends, so the neighborhood must have younger residents and professionals, the schools scores are automatically higher, the prices of the houses also higher… you’ll figure it out.