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Rudy L. Kusuma
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LA County vs. Orange County: Which One is Right For You?

LA County vs. Orange County, CA – What to Know

Can’t decide whether to live in LA County vs. Orange County? If you’ve never been to Southern California before, you may be unfamiliar with what each area has to offer. LA and Orange counties are located right next to each other. However, they’re actually quite different. 

In this post, we’ll discuss some of the similarities and differences between life in LA County vs. Orange County. We’ll compare the cost of living, housing markets, traffic, and more so you can decide which one is the right fit for you.

What is the Cost of Living in Each County?

Many people might assume the cost of living in Los Angeles County is much more expensive than in Orange County. However, it’s actually the opposite. The overall cost of living is actually higher in Orange County, though certain elements like housing depend on which area of the county you decide to live in.

For example, there are a fair amount of affordable areas of Los Angeles outside of the western part of the city, like the eastern and northeastern sections. And there are many areas of Orange County that are cheaper than LA, though bigger cities like Irvine are generally more expensive.

  • Overall cost of living is 3.2% cheaper in LA County
  • Groceries are 1% cheaper in LA County
  • Sales tax is 2.5% higher in LA County
  • Housing is 39.5% cheaper in LA County
  • Utilities are 2.4% cheaper in LA County
  • Transportation is 46.9% cheaper in Orange County
LA County vs. Orange County

 What Are the Housing Markets Like in LA County vs. Orange County?

If you’re planning to buy a new home in either county, then the housing market is probably your top concern. As mentioned above, home prices will depend on which city or town you’re looking in. Both counties have their expensive areas, but they also have more affordable ones as well.

In LA County, for example, homes in Bel Air, Venice, Santa Monica, and West Los Angeles range in price from $1.7 million to $6.4 million.

However, homes in Downtown LA, El Sereno, East Hollywood, and Silver Lake typically range in price from $585,000 to  $1.4 million.

Orange County, in contrast, has more affordable home prices in Anaheim and Santa Ana, which generally range from $725,000 to $750,000. Homes in Irvine and Huntington Beach are more expensive, ranging from $1 million to $1.13 million.

Average home prices are more expensive in LA But when you compare the median prices instead, LA County is actually more affordable.

  • Average rent cost is $514 more expensive in LA County
  • Average home prices are $12,000 more expensive in LA County
  • Median home costs are $115,200 cheaper in LA County
  • Median sale prices are $140,000 cheaper in LA County

How Does Crime Compare in LA County vs. Orange County? 

Crime is another top concern for people looking to move to a new area. Overall, crime is worse in LA Violent crime and property crime in the county are higher than the national average. On the other hand, the same crimes in Orange County are lower than the national average. Of course, crime varies depending on the city or town.

  • Violent crime is 7.2% higher in LA County
  • Property crime is 10% higher in LA County
  • 732 violent crimes occur per capita in LA County
  • 2,383 property crimes occur per capita in LA County
  • Irvine has 92% less violent crime than Los Angeles
  • Huntington Beach has 74% less violent crime than Los Angeles
  • Anaheim has 57% less violent crime than Los Angeles

What is the Population Like in Each County?

So, how do LA County and Orange County stack up when it comes to population and density? It’s no secret that LA has a huge population. In fact, it’s the most populous county in both California and the U.S. as a whole. Around 25% of California’s entire population calls Los Angeles home.

  • The population of LA County is 9.9 million compared to 3.1 million for Orange County
  • Orange County has 1,545 more people per square mile than LA County
  • The city of Los Angeles has a population of 3.9 million and a density of 8,300 people per square mile
  • The city of Anaheim has a population of 353,000 
  • The city of Santa Ana has a population of 332,610

What Are Neighborhoods Like in LA vs. Orange County?

LA County offers a mix of urban and suburban areas, with Los Angeles being heavily urban. In contrast, Orange County as a whole is more of a suburb.

On top of that, homes in the city of Los Angeles tend to be older and more unique, while homes in Orange County are more tract-style.

In addition, if you want to live closer to the nightlife and activities of Los Angeles, then LA County may be a better choice since it’s about an hour’s drive between Los Angeles and Orange County. Los Angeles also has a very active nightlife, whereas businesses and bars around Orange County tend to close earlier in the evening.

Learn More About LA County vs. Orange County With Our Team

Still have questions about life in LA County vs. Orange County? Deciding which county to call home is a difficult choice. Each area offers its own pros and cons, and ultimately, the right one for you will depend on what you’re looking for. 

But if you’re ready to take the next steps and buy a home in either area, then Your Home Sold Guaranteed Realty – Rudy Lira Kusuma Real Estate Team should be your go-to choice.

Our team of professional realtors has years of experience serving the Southern California area. During that time, we’ve helped thousands of home buyers find their dream homes in LA and Orange counties.

We stand out from other agents in the area because of our exceptional customer service and unique buyer’s guarantees, which help protect you during the home-buying process.

To learn more about working with our team, give us a call at 626-789-0159 or fill out the form below.


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