In Downey, 51% of the residents are renting compared to 49% owning a home, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Large-scale apartment buildings with more than 50 units represent 13% of Downey’s rentals, 60% are small-scale complexes with under 50 units, and 26% are single-family rentals.
What do typical apartment communities look like in Downey, CA?
The age and size of multifamily buildings are among the most visible characteristics of the rental market in a city. In this case, the apartment buildings in Downey are about 53 years old, on average. Of these, 2% have been built since 2000, representing the newer options on the market and typically offering more amenities. Rental buildings in the city have an average height of 2 stories. About all of the rental communities here are low-rise, garden-style communities, 2% are mid-rises, and none are high-rise buildings. These are true especially for large-scale multifamily buildings with over 50 apartments.
What apartment floorplans are common in Downey, CA?
Rental apartments in Downey come in a range of sizes and floorplans. Studio apartments represent 0.0% of units for rent, ideal for singles, renters on a budget and people who value central locations more than space. Rentals with 1-bedroom floorplans make up 55% of the total apartments in the city, while 2-bedroom floorplans represent around 41% of all rentals in Downey. The rest are larger floorplans with 3 bedrooms or more, typically preferred by families, larger households or roommates sharing space.
Renter's guide to Downey, CA
Considered one of the Gateway Cities, Downey is a small city in the southeast of the LA metropolitan area. It’s a city of longtime innovation and was home to the Apollo and Space Shuttle space programs, with much of the equipment designed and manufactured within the city. In many areas, it leans more urban than suburban, though it retains a strong sense of community, and is popular with young professionals and families alike.
With a population of 113,358, Downey is among the top 20 most populated principle cities in the LA metro area. However, with an area of 12.57 sq. miles, it’s not as densely populated as neighboring Gateway Cities, such as Maywood and Huntington Park. Compared to LA proper, it’s around 40 times smaller in terms of physical size. Located just 13 miles southeast of Downtown LA, it’s conveniently served by 4 major freeways, making travel in any direction easy, with popular spots such as Long Beach, just 14.5 miles south.
Downey has a semi-arid climate, which translates to hot summers and warm winters, with very little precipitation throughout the year. July is normally the hottest month, with averages of around 85°F, while January is the coldest, with lows of around 46°F. The city generally receives around 14 inches of rainfall per year and enjoys 287 sunny days.
Tips for renting in Downey, CA
Many residents agree that if you’re moving to Downey, it’s worth owning a private vehicle. While public transport options are good in and around the city, it can take some time to get anywhere if you live further away from downtown. Most shopping venues, and the downtown area are quite a distance from many of the residential areas, so a private vehicle, or a bicycle, can be useful.
It’s a town with a strong sense of community, with many community efforts in place to help improve the town and make it a great place to live. So, if you’re looking for the anonymity of a big city, Downey might not be the best choice. Likewise, if you’re moving from downtown LA to Downey, you can expect a change of pace, and a quieter way of life. Of course, the opposite can be true if you’re moving from a more rural area.
It’s a great choice for families, with a safe environment and award-winning schools, however, as a bustling business center, it’s also well suited to young professionals. As a bonus, it’s also home to the oldest operating McDonalds in the world!
Be sure to familiarize yourself with renter’s rights and what renting in the area entails before moving, to prevent any issues from arising in the future.
Living in Downey, CA
Despite being situated in one of the most densely populated areas of the country, Downey offers a change of pace from its neighbors, with several spacious neighborhoods. It might not have that small-town vibe, but it’s far away from the hubbub of living in a big city, and there’s a strong sense of community.
While Downey is home to green spaces and parks, it can seem a long way away from the great outdoors, with most of the surroundings being suburbs and other cities. Many younger residents might complain that there’s not an awful lot to do in the city, with nightlife in particularly short supply. However, the recently opened Promenade at Downey has brought some possibilities, while the beach and Downtown LA are never too far away.
Things to do in Downey, CA
Downey is home to 8 small parks, each with varying facilities. Dog walkers can enjoy the dog park at Rio San Gabriel Park, which also offers a kids' playground, picnic areas, and sports fields. Nearby Wilderness Park is slightly larger, and great for kids and adults alike, with 2 man-made ponds for fishing or feeding the ducks, plus numerous well-lit jogging and walking tracks.
The Promenade at Downey is a fairly recent addition, offering a wealth of stores for all your shopping needs, from big brand names, to smaller boutiques. The site is also home to a large movie theater, gyms, restaurants and bars. Additionally, it’s a great place to visit and learn about the local history, with reading stations and in-ground medallions detailing the city’s contribution to space exploration and movie making.
Those keen on anything space related will love the Columbia Memorial Space Center, which features numerous kid friendly, interactive exhibits and a Space Shuttle simulator. Alternatively, take in a show at the Downey Theatre, with performances both local and from around the world. The theater is also home to the iconic Downey Día de los Muertos Art Festival.
Downey, CA employment & economy
Residents of Downey enjoy a higher than average median household income of $68,162. In 2017, Downey was recognized as the Most Business Friendly City in LA, and the city’s biggest employers include Kaiser Permanente, the Stonewood Center, and the Downey Unified School District.
The most common occupations include office and admin support roles, sales associates, and management occupations, while the highest paid jobs held by local residents include legal occupations, law enforcement supervisors, and health and technical occupations. The 2 largest industries in Downey are health care and manufacturing, closely followed by retail trade.
Education in Downey, CA
Downey is served by the Downey Unified School District, with 42 public schools within the city limits. Of the 3 high schools — Downey High, Warren High, and Columbus High — Downey High School is the top-rated and is ranked #419 best public high school in California. There are 4 public middle schools in Downey, and 13 public elementary schools. Griffiths is the top-rated middle school, while Lewis takes the top spot for elementary schools.
In addition to public schools, there are also 11 private schools in Downey. Calvary Chapel Christian School is the top-rated private school, and ranks #300 best high school in California, though it accepts students from K-12.
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