Moving to Fresno, CA

Thinking about moving to Fresno?

You’ll be in good company. Between 2010 and 2016, more than 27,388 people have moved to Fresno, an increase of 5.5%. New residents are attracted to Fresno’s affordability, arts scene, and easy access to nature. Fresno is one of the most livable cities in California.

Where Are All the New Residents of Fresno Moving From?

Fresno is the closest big city to the geographical center of California (in North Fork), and it’s near several renowned recreation destinations, including Yosemite National Park and Sierra National Forest. So, perhaps it should come…


Fresno is ideally located in central California, making for easy weekend trips to the beach (the coast is about a three-hour drive) and easy day trips into the Sierra Nevada (about two hours). Even closer, you’ll find Yosemite National Park an hour’s drive north, King’s Canyon National Park an hour to the east, and Sequoia National Park a little over an hour’s drive to the southeast. When the first phase of California’s high speed rail corridor is finished in the mid-2020s, Fresnans will be able to zip up and down California, from San Francisco to Los Angeles.

Fresno Population

Fresno is home to 522,053 Fresnans, making it the largest city in California’s central valley. With an area of 113.2 square miles, Fresno has a population density of 4,612 persons per square mile, which makes it more dense than many other cities of comparable size.

The Fresno, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area boasts a population of 979,915 people, of which Fresno proper’s population makes up 53%.

Fresno Housing Market

One of the drawbacks of all of Fresno’s growth and livability are its relatively high housing prices. The median home value in Fresno is $214,100, 7% above the US median value, according to Zillow. The median price per square foot in Fresno is $139. Over the past 5 years, home values in Fresno have increased by 10%.

Renters in Fresno may have an easier time finding affordable housing. The median rent in Fresno is $1,246 per month, which is 13% lower than the US median. Over the past year, rental rates in Fresno have increased by 2.4%.

Fresno Local Economy

Fresno’s economy is growing strong. The Fresno metro area’s GDP grew by 20% between 2010 and 2015, from $32 billion in 2010 to $39 billion in 2015, a total increase of $7 billion. The metro area has a per capita GDP of $39,626. According to the US Census Bureau, the median household income in Fresno, CA is $45,233, 26% lower than the national median. Fresno’s unemployment rate is 8.4%.

Weather in Fresno

If hot weather isn’t your thing, you might want to think twice before moving to Fresno. Fresno winters are warm, with an average temperature of 52 degrees. Summers in Fresno are hot, with an average temperature of 80 degrees. The average temperature in Spring is 70 degrees and the average temperature in Fall is 56 degrees.

Don’t worry too much about packing your umbrella. Fresno only sees 29 rainy days per year on average and has an average annual rainfall of 11.5 inches. Fresno is relatively dry, with an average annual relative humidity of 61. And don’t foget to bring your sunglasses and tanning lotion! Fresno gets an average of 2,328 sunny hours per year and 194 sunny days, more than much of the rest of the country.

Fresno Crime Rate

Fresno is a safe city, with a violent crime rate of only 551 incidents per 100,000 persons according to the FBI, a lower rate than average. Property crime rates in Fresno are relatively high, with a rate of 4,148 incidents per 100,000 persons, a higher rate than average.

Traffic in Fresno

Traffic is not as big of a problem in Fresno as it is in many other US cities. According to a survey conducted by INRIX, the average commuter in Fresno spends 8.7 hours in traffic each year, with about 4% of their time commuting in a traffic jam, a lower portion than average among US cities.

Cost of Living in Fresno

Fresno is a relatively affordable place to live with a low cost of living. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis‘s Regional Price Parity survey, which takes into account cost of living metrics including the price of goods and services and housing, Fresno has a regional price parity of 106.0, -3.2% below the average for US metro areas.

Education in Fresno

Fresno’s workforce is not as educated as comparable cities. Only 12% is in possession of a Bachelor’s degree, and 26% of the population did not complete High School. Only 5% of the population has a Graduate or Professional degree.

Fresno Demographics

The median age in Fresno is 30.9 years. 49.9% of the population in the Fresno metro area is male, while 50.1% is female. 21.9% of the metro population is foreign born.

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Moving to Fresno, CA?

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