Explore These (Normally Impossible to Buy in…) Bay Area Towns

Aug 5, 2022

With prices falling in many towns for the first time in years, now is the time to get into these San Francisco suburbs.

This summer, the San Francisco housing market is finally starting to slow down. There have been more active listings and price reductions  – and that’s great news for anyone making a move to the Bay Area. Towns that are normally impossible to get into are a bit more accessible. If you’ve been thinking about making the move, consider this your sign. Here are seven suburbs to kick off your search…

#1. Los Altos

Los Altos is a popular Silicon Valley town with top-notch schools and a walkable downtown filled with shops and eateries. Locals love meeting up with friends for a bite at the eclectic State Street Market and the seasonal farmers market is a great place to pick up produce for a farm-fresh meal at home. Outdoor lovers also appreciate how easy it is to hit the hiking trails in the Redwood Grove Nature Preserve

#2. Palo Alto

Palo Alto has something for everything. This bustling college town (Stanford University is located here) has it all including a zoo, multiple farmers markets, waterfront parks, museums and more. The tree-lined streets of downtown Palo Alto are an ideal backdrop for a weekend stroll, coffee in one hand and dog leash in another (check out our post – this town’s super dog-friendly!). Blue Bottle and Verve are great coffee spots for the most discerning java enthusiasts. Foodies will love the epic dining options in town, like the one Michelin-starred Protege.

#3. White Oaks in San Carlos 

The White Oaks neighborhood of San Carlos is normally very hard to get into – no surprise since it’s home to one of the best elementary schools in the state. Now that this neighborhood is a bit more approachable, there’s never been a better time to explore. Visit some of the wineries, check out the farmers market, go for a bike ride and just picture what life could look like in this charming suburb.

#4. Piedmont 

Piedmont is an exclusive Bay Area town known for its beautiful homes set on idyllic tree-lined streets. The town is surrounded by Oakland and residents can venture out of city limits for Trader Joe’s or the world class restaurants. Head to Kona Club if you’re in the mood for tiki drinks. The historic Claremont Country Club in the nearby Rockridge neighborhood of Oakland is a favorite for families looking to build their social circle and golf and tennis enthusiasts.

#5. Rockridge in Oakland

Rockridge is Oakland’s hip neighborhood that’s especially popular with young families and commuters. There’s a BART station in town that travels to the city in 30 minutes. But you won’t have to leave for entertainment. Rockridge is home to plenty of trendy bars and restaurants like The Graduate and the vegan-forward Millennium. It’s a very walkable community with cute bungalows and all the amenities you need, including fitness studios and the gourmet grocer Market Hall.

For families looking for a bit more space, Upper Rockridge offers larger homes and great views.  Plus Hillcrest Elementary School is one of the highest-ranked schools in the Oakland Unified School District and one of the few that goes through middle school. Check the OUSD regarding enrollment info – and keep in mind the district has a multi-step enrollment process, and students’ aren’t guaranteed a spot, even if they’re zoned for OUSD. 

#6. San Anselmo

This charming community sits in the Mount Tamalpais foothill. San Anselmo is known for its art and wine festival, antique shops and its hiking and cycling scenes. Downtown is very walkable and live music and outdoor movies are regularly held in Creek Park. On top of all the small-town vibes, San Anselmo features top-notch schools and world-class restaurants – The Baan Thai and Comforts are local favorites. 

#7. Mill Valley

Art and culture enthusiasts are drawn to Mill Valley and this town is home to incredible galleries and historic venues. The Mill Valley Film Festival takes place here each year and Sweetwater Music Hall regularly hosts renowned folk and rock bands. If the outdoors are more your thing, the scenic Dipsea Trail travels from Mill Valley all the way to Stinson Beach and Mount Tamalpais offers endless hiking and mountain biking opportunities. And when locals need to stock up on groceries, there are two Whole Foods and gourmet Mill Valley Market in town. Another perk? Mill Valley is home to one of Marin’s best downtowns, packed with shops, restaurants, and more. Need something else? You’re less than 30 minutes to the city.

Now is the time to get into one of these towns – so what are you waiting for? Get in touch today and we’ll help you plan a town tour so you can start exploring.

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