Always dreamed of living in a peaceful city in Southern California with easy access to culture and education? You should consider moving to Stanford, California. Stanford is known for being the home of Stanford University, one of the top institutions of higher learning in the country. It’s a census-designated place in an unincorporated area of Santa Clara County that is mainly populated by students and residents who work at the university.
The community dates back to 1891 with the establishment of the university, which occupies 8,000 acres in the area. Today, Sanford is a good place to live, with amazing weather and easy access to top educational institutions and employment opportunities. Here’s what you need to know about moving to Stanford.
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Where Is Stanford?
Stanford, CA, is in the northwest corner of Santa Clara County. Located near the Southern tip of the San Francisco Bay, Stanford is surrounded by nearby communities like Palo Alto, Menlo Park, Ladera, and Los Altos. It’s also close to several nature preserves, such as El Corte de Madera Creek Preserve and Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve, and about 30 miles from the Pacific Ocean.
Stanford Population and Demographics
The population of Stanford is 21,150, according to the 2020 census, which is a 42% increase compared to 2010. The population density is 7,690.9 residents per square mile. Many famous residents grew up or spent a significant amount of their childhood in Stanford, including MLB player John Gall and Thumbtack CEO Marco Zappacosta.
Other Stanford Demographics
- The population is 51% male and 49% female
- It’s a very young community due to the university, and the median age is 22.1 years old
- The ethnic and racial breakdown is 48% white, 24% Asian, 17% Hispanic, 7% mixed race and 3% black.
- The median household income is $66,863 per year
- It’s a highly educated community, and 99.5% of residents are high school graduates, while 93.6% are college graduates
- The foreign-born population is 26.9%
- Only 15% of Stanford residents are married
Stanford is a very safe city with a low crime rate. The total crime rate is 983 incidents per 100,000 residents, which is 58% below the national average. The violent crime rate is 168 incidents per 100,000 residents, and the property crime rate is 815 incidents per 100,000 residents, which is around 58% below the national average.
The Santa Clara County Office of the Sheriff and the Stanford University Department of Public Safety work together to control crime in the city. The Department of Public Safety has a staff of 32 deputies and 20 community service officers.
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Cost of Living in Stanford
Living in Stanford is expensive. However, it offers plenty of value for your money. Stanford is in the Bay Area, which has one of the highest cost of living index scores of any city in the United States. The COLI is a metric used to determine the relative cost of living in an area compared to the rest of the US, which is represented by 100. The COLI for the Bay Area is 192, which indicates that the Stanford cost of living is 92% more expensive than the rest of the United States.
According to the Family Budget Calculator created by the Economic Policy Institute, a family of four, including two adults and two children, would need to make $138,713 to live comfortably in Santa Clara County.
Typical Stanford Living Expenses
- Inexpensive Restaurant: $16
- Cappuccino: $5.00
- Bottle of Coke: $2.67
- 1 Gallon of Milk: $3.67
- Loaf of Bread: $4.50
- 12 Eggs: $5.85
- 1 Pound of Chicken: $5.41
- 1 Pound of Beef: $8.47
- 1 Pound of Apples: $2.85
- 1 Pound of White Rice: $2.63
- Average Stanford Utilities Per Month: $256
The Stanford real estate market can get very expensive and contributes to the high cost of living. The median listing price of homes for sale in Stanford is $839,000, which is down by 73% compared to last year when the median price was $2.6 million. However, there is very little housing in the actual community of Stanford that is not owned by the university, which contributes to the fluctuations. The average price per square foot of Sanford real estate is $590.
You won’t find many rental properties within the actual community of Stanford besides dorms operated by the university. But you can find plenty of rental options nearby in Santa Clara County, where the average rent is $3,003 per month, and prices range from $1,625 for a one bedroom to $15,371 for a two-bedroom.
Stanford Neighborhoods | Where to Live in Stanford
The university covers most of the community of Stanford, and therefore there aren’t many unique neighborhoods in Stanford. However, anywhere you go will offer great weather, low crime, and a high quality of life. The most desirable neighborhoods are in the northwest, while the most affordable are in the center.
Some of the best neighborhoods in Palo Alto that offer an easy commute to Stanford include Professorville, Crescent Park, University South and Midtown. For prospective students who are planning on moving to Stanford, the Stanford Daily has a guide to choosing the best on-campus housing.
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Weather Stanford, CA
Stanford is well known for its fantastic weather. According to the Koppen classification system, the Stanford climate is warm-summer Mediterranean, indicating comfortable, arid summers and short, wet, partially cloudy winters. The temperature usually ranges from about 44°F to 76°F, although in the winter, it can get as low as 37°F and the summer can get as hot as 86°F. The best time to visit Stanford for outdoor activities is late June to September.
Snow in Stanford is rare. However, it does rain a fair amount. The community averages about 17 inches of rainfall per year. So you should pack an umbrella if you plan on moving to Stanford.
Things to Do in Stanford
Students and residents will find many amazing Stanford attractions, from sculpture gardens to concert halls. The Stanford Shopping Center is a beautiful outdoor shopping mall offering a variety of popular retailers and chain stores such as Bloomingdales, Macy’s, and Nordstrom. Other nearby shopping complexes in Town and Country Village and the Charleston Shopping Center. Here are a few other notable attractions if you’re looking for fun things to do in Stanford.
Located on the Stanford Campus, the Rodin Sculpture Garden is a breathtaking outdoor exhibit showcasing 20 of the famed sculptor’s statues.
Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA 94304 (650) 723-4177
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The Arizona cactus garden is a small botanical garden on the University campus that features an array of cacti and succulents and is open daily to the public for free.
Stanford University, 450 Serra Mall, Stanford, CA 94305 (650) 723-2300
Bing Concert Hall is a performing arts venue on the northeastern corner of the Stanford campus that frequently hosts live music, lectures, and dance ensembles.
327 Lasuen St, Stanford, CA 94305, (650) 724-2464
There are several public parks in Stanford that are maintained by the San Jose Parks, Recreation, and Neighborhood Services Department.
Additional attractions Near Stanford
Although you won’t find any restaurants directly on the Stanford campus, there are several great restaurants in the Stanford Shopping Center and surrounding areas. Here are some of the best places to eat in Stanford.
Located in the Stanford Shopping Center, Pacific Catch is a seafood restaurant serving sushi bowls, surf and turf, shareable plates, and more.
711 Stanford Shopping Center, Palo Alto, CA 94304 (650) 384-6430
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The Treehouse is one of the best restaurants in Stanford for students, with delectable comfort food ranging from chorizo burritos to bacon and eggs, as well as a selection of beer and wine.
459 Lagunita Dr, Stanford, CA 94305 (650) 723-4500
Also located at the Stanford Shopping Center, Bazille is an upscale New American restaurant connected to Nordstrom, offering bistro cuisine, including soups, salads, sandwiches, and desserts.
550 Stanford Shopping Center, Palo Alto, CA 94304 (650) 688-2614
Jobs in Stanford
Stanford University is the largest employer in the community and offers a plethora of job opportunities and educational programs. Most Stanford residents are employed in educational instruction and library occupations, life, physical and social sciences, and office and administrative support occupations. The top industries in the community are educational services, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodations and food services.
According to Payscale, the average salary of a Stanford University employee is $92,000 per year. The average compensation for some common professions includes:
- Clinical Research Coordinator – $62,957
- Administrative Associate – $60,913
- Project Manager – $97,568
- Post-Doctoral Research Associate – $67,379
- Library Manager – $71,592
Although education is the main industry at Stanford, being in the heart of Silicon Valley, living in Stanford also provides employment opportunities in tech and other fields nearby.
Major employers in Santa Clara County besides Stanford University include:
So from education to tech, residents will find many high-paying and fulfilling Stanford jobs, regardless of their field or experience level.
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Living in Stanford also offers access to the best schools in the country. Stanford is within the highly respected Palo Alto Unified School District, which includes 12 elementary schools, three middle schools, two high schools, and one adult school. The school district is considered among the best in the state, with an average student-to-teacher ratio of 17:1 and a graduation rate of 94.5%. Palo Alto High School, in particular, is ranked within the top 300 high schools in the country and 34th in California, according to US News and World Report.
Stanford is also the home of Stanford University, one of the top private colleges in the country. It’s tied with Harvard for 3rd best school in the nation and has the top computer science program and second-best undergraduate engineering program (after MIT).
Stanford Statistics and Information
- Stanford county: Santa Clara County
- Stanford area: 2.77 square miles
- Stanford, CA Zip Code: 94305, 94309
- Stanford area code: 650
- Stanford elevation: 95 ft
- Stanford time zone: Pacific Standard Time
- Stanford closest airport: The closest airport to Stanford is San Jose Mineta International Airport (SJC), which is about 22 miles away.
Map of Stanford, CA
Explore more fun attractions, restaurants, and other benefits of living in Stanford with this map.
Ready to relocate to this picturesque California community. Trust our dependable and affordable Stanford movers to make your move simple and stress-free. Call 650-284-2931 today for a free, personalized moving estimate.