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Old 02-18-2009, 07:20 PM
 
3 posts, read 9,142 times
Reputation: 10

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Hi, my family is planning on moving to CA soon from RI, so I've been doing research. After reading about SoCal in this forum it seems that the people and neighborhoods are segregated into 2 sections - very rich or very poor. Is this really so? Where in the LA area would a middle-class family fit? (Decent high schools, safe neighborhood). Reading about "infamous Latino gangs" has kind of terrified me.

Please tell me that all of this negativity about SoCal isn't true... someone give me some hope that CA is as great as I think it is.
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Old 02-18-2009, 07:29 PM
 
Location: CITY OF ANGELS AND CONSTANT DANGER
5,404 posts, read 7,889,711 times
Reputation: 2169
it is a great place. dont beleive the hype. check out cities like glendale, alhambra, monterrey park, downey, cerritos, pasadena, s.pas, santa monica, culver city. and many many areas of LA proper. mt wash. silver lake. los feliz. atwater. etc etc.

its a lot of exageration really.

but def tell your folks to do their research before picking a "home"
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Old 02-18-2009, 07:32 PM
 
Location: Mission Viejo, CA
2,498 posts, read 7,526,417 times
Reputation: 1527
It helps to know what middle class is defined as by you. Somebody will say, "I make $40k a year, have three kids, and am middle class here in Oklahoma City." Then they ask, "Where do the middle class people looking for $200k homes live?"

Then we have to tell them: "Sorry but you are poor by California standards, have fun renting or buying a 2 bedroom condo in the ghetto for the rest of your life as you try to live on $40k with three kids in this area!"


----It is easier to recommend places when we know some specifics: Home or rent price range (can you afford $550k, $850k, $100k, etc... or $2,500 per month, $4,000 per month, $3,000 per month, etc...), where you (or your spouse) will be working, and whether you want to be in a specific location of Southern California (close to Los Angeles, near the beach, near the mountains, etc...)

I would recommend a place like Thousand Oaks for example, but if you tell me you are working in Walnut, CA which is 68 miles away, then that isn't such a great recommendation. Once we know work location and home price we will be able to get to work and really help you!!

Schools are important to look at too. Just because a neighborhood is rich or middle class, the public high schools it attends aren't necessarily good (avoid LAUSD) and parents in those neighborhoods may pay for private school. (although often the schools are good in these areas, like San Marino, South Pasadena, La Canada, Calabasas, Manhattan Beach, Seal Beach, Yorba Linda, Thousand Oaks, etc...)

Use this map to find schools: http://schoolperformancemaps.com/ca/
Be sure to click on "secondary schools" at the top and then you can explore the L.A. area. High schools that are 7/10 or better are a good place to start or consider, 9/10 or 10/10 are the best.

Last edited by missionhome; 02-18-2009 at 07:46 PM..
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Old 02-18-2009, 07:40 PM
 
Location: GLAMA
16,587 posts, read 20,162,906 times
Reputation: 16110
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunny225 View Post
After reading about SoCal in this forum it seems that the people and neighborhoods are segregated into 2 sections - very rich or very poor. Is this really so?
No. Emphatically no. Take the haters with a grain of salt.
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Old 02-18-2009, 08:28 PM
 
Location: LB/OC for now...
5,112 posts, read 11,984,552 times
Reputation: 1789
To me, the basic definition of what you asked for(decent schools, safe area) would be Lakewood. Great neighborhoods, schools that are 7-8 out of 10 on a general scale(you get what you put in I believe), and affordable for california middle class standards
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Old 02-18-2009, 09:09 PM
 
Location: Burbank
1,204 posts, read 2,880,424 times
Reputation: 408
It depends on how much money you make.
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Old 02-18-2009, 09:29 PM
 
1,398 posts, read 4,707,920 times
Reputation: 1749
IMHO of five decades here, both missionhome and knoxtown offer good assessments. Good luck in your relocation, it's why we're all online here.
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Old 02-19-2009, 09:05 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
49,539 posts, read 41,487,763 times
Reputation: 21201
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunny225 View Post
Hi, my family is planning on moving to CA soon from RI, so I've been doing research. After reading about SoCal in this forum it seems that the people and neighborhoods are segregated into 2 sections - very rich or very poor. Is this really so? Where in the LA area would a middle-class family fit? (Decent high schools, safe neighborhood). Reading about "infamous Latino gangs" has kind of terrified me.

Please tell me that all of this negativity about SoCal isn't true... someone give me some hope that CA is as great as I think it is.
Sunny,

It is true, So California isn't what it was 20, or more years ago, but there are great areas that are not filled with gangs or only for the very rich. I don't know what income bracket you are in, what you are thinking about housing prices or if you will need to be close to Los Angelses or wherever you are re-locating to. In and around Los Angeles middle class areas: Glendale, Arcadia, Sierra Madre, parts of Pasadena, Temple City, parts of Torrance, and many parts of OC. All these areas have good to very good schools and are middle income, with some being upscale. I didn't mention the San Fernando Valley as I don't know that much about it. I do know areas like Simi Valley are great communities, but that is a long way form Los Angeles if you need to be close to downtown..

Nita
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Old 02-19-2009, 09:07 AM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
49,539 posts, read 41,487,763 times
Reputation: 21201
Quote:
Originally Posted by the one View Post
it is a great place. dont beleive the hype. check out cities like glendale, alhambra, monterrey park, downey, cerritos, pasadena, s.pas, santa monica, culver city. and many many areas of LA proper. mt wash. silver lake. los feliz. atwater. etc etc.

its a lot of exageration really.

but def tell your folks to do their research before picking a "home"
I had forgotten about So Pasa, not knowing what the Op has in mind, I don't think I would be consentrating on some of those towns you mentioned but it she/he will have to judge for themselves about that.

Nita
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Old 02-19-2009, 09:25 AM
 
2,549 posts, read 1,494,386 times
Reputation: 891
Default Eagle Rock, CA

We live in Eagle Rock. My wife is a counselor at the South Pasadena Middle School. I grew up in Eagle Rock, moved away for school and the beginning of life away from my folks, then moved back in 1987. The area has changed a lot since 1959 (when I was born). To some old schoolers it's all bad. Apparently mostly because of an influx of different cultures...Filipino, Armenian, Chinese, Hispanic etc...To me, that is a positive and makes it all the more interesting.

Today home values have held their own in Eagle Rock. Not cheap but not as pricey as neighboring Glendale, parts of Pasadena and definately South Pasadena (be prepared for sticker shock there especially). The area has a small town feel even though 10 miles from downtown. The high school has a highly regarded magnate program and there are two public elementary / middle schools.

I love the area. Very organic (lots of artists) and very middle class. I walk to Trader Joes and a host of restaurants. I have also done the mountainbike / ski / surf in one day excursion.

It's all here including the bad elements (like most cities in certain areas).

To say it's all bad is to be closed minded or to be an elitist from the East Coast.

I love the Rock!
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