$1,165 - $1,375
- 1-2 Beds
- 1-2 Baths
$1,145 - $1,465
- 1-3 Beds
- 1-2 Baths
- 4 Beds
- 2 Baths
$1,085 - $1,450
- 1-3 Beds
- 1-2 Baths
- 2 Beds
- 1 Bath
$1,002 - $1,792
- 1-3 Beds
Renter's Guide to Modesto
Modesto is a close-knit agricultural town, located in the Central Valley of California. It offers the amenities and cultural diversity of a larger city, but with small town appeal. Forbes ranked Modesto 48th out of the 100 “Best Bang-for-the-Buck Cities.” It has also been honored as a Tree City USA. Modesto is home to the Gallo Family Winery, the largest privately owned winery in the world.
Modesto has taken great measures to update its downtown core and make the city feel a destination worth visiting. Modesto is the largest city and the county seat of Stanislaus County, and lies 90 miles north of Fresno, 40 miles north of Merced and 68 miles south of Sacramento. San Francisco is 92 miles to the west and just 66 miles from Yosemite National Park.
The weather in Modesto is perfect for agriculture, which is part of why farming is so prosperous here. Summers are hot and dry, but winters are mild, with cool weather, lots of rain, and plenty of fog.
Modesto, CA Demographics
- Total Population163,412
Female 78,551Male 84,860
- Median Age36.3
Cost of Living in Modesto, CA
Modesto’s cost of living is about 8.5% higher than the national average, but this is typical for a town in California. The cost of a one-way bus fare is $1.50 or $1.25 for students and $0.75 for those on Medicaid or with disabilities. A meal for two people in Modesto would typically cost about $50. Milk is about $3.35 per gallon. Utilities are also more expensive than the national average, costing from $200-$300 per month. A one-bedroom apartment near the downtown area would cost about $975 to rent, while a one-bedroom outside of downtown costing much less—around $685 per month.
Average Rent in Modesto, CA
- Modesto, CA Average Rental Price, September 2017$1,093/mo
- 1 Bedroom$978
- 2 Bedrooms$1,165
Modesto, CA Apartment Rent Ranges
Modesto, CA Rent Trends
|All rentals||Studio||1 Bed||2 Beds||3 Beds|
|Sept / 2016||$1,048||$765||$936||$1,138|
|May / 2016||$1,004||$735||$905||$1,094|
|Jan / 2016||$966||$729||$881||$1,016|
|Sept / 2015||$935||$674||$856||$1,005|
|May / 2015||$907||$670||$819||$944|
|Jan / 2015||$856||$666||$781||$932|
|Sept / 2014||$835||$593||$783||$891|
|May / 2014||$810||$597||$742||$876|
|Jan / 2014||$780||$593||$727||$846|
Living in Modesto, CA
Modesto is a pleasant place to call home. Founder William C. Ralston didn’t want the city named after him, and thus the name was created from the Spanish word for modest. Some great things about Modesto are the mild winters, the small town atmosphere, and how close it is to several national parks. Drawbacks? Modesto has high unemployment rates, higher crime rates than expected in a small city and not a lot of opportunities for higher education or careers. But, don’t let those downsides keep you from falling in love with this quaint country spot of land in California.
Things to do in Modesto
You will find many things to do and see in scenic Modesto and its surrounding areas. Modesto is only a few hours in one direction from Fresno ski resorts and a few hours the other direction to the ocean. You can easily visit Yosemite National Park and be amazed by all the incredible mountain views. In Modesto city, you can visit the McHenry Mansion and Museum which give information about the founding of Modesto and its history. Filmmaker George Lucas was born in Modesto and there’s a square in downtown with a bronze statue raised in his honor, called George Lucas Plaza.
Festivals have gained popularity in Modesto, particularly music festivals like Summerfest and the downtown summer concert series. The Graffiti Summer Festival celebrates the iconic 1973 film by George Lucas based in Modesto called American Graffiti with hot rods and thousands of visitors to the city.
If the arts is your thing, catch a theatre show at The State Theatre, which has been around since the 1920s, or at the Gallo Center for the Arts, located in downtown. The Modesto Symphony Orchestra and Townsend Opera both play at the Gallo. Once a month, the city hosts an Art Walk, where you can stroll and see works of art at various galleries and locations around the city.
The Modesto Nuts Minor League Baseball Club plays at the John Thurman Field and average about 70 home games a season.
Employment and Economy
Due to the city’s proximity to fertile land, farming, and agricultural centers, many of the jobs in Modesto revolve around food, wineries, and manufacturing. Some of the top employers in Modesto are: E & J Gallo Winery, Seneca Foods, Stanislaus Food Products, Del Monte Foods, Memorial Medical Center, Modesto City Schools, and Kaiser Permanente. Large companies headquartered in Modesto include: DeRuosi Nut, 5.11 Tactical, and E & J Gallo Winery.
Modesto, CA Households
- Total Number of Households56,723
Family 38,249Non-family 18,474
Children 20,796No Children 35,927
- Average People Per Household2.41
- Median Household Income$41,219
- Median Housing Costs Per Month$971
Education in Modesto
Modesto City Schools serve 32,000 students from Modesto and outlying areas. Modesto Junior College is a two-year junior college with 20,000 students. University of California, Merced is a research university located in Merced that serves the Modesto area. California State University, Stanislaus is a liberal arts school located in nearby Turlock.
Modesto, CA Education Statistics
- No High School9%
- Some High School40%
- Some College29%
- Associate Degree7%
- Bachelor Degree11%
- Graduate Degree5%
Tips for Renting in Modesto
In the state of California, landlords must tell tenants if their gas and electricity also serves other parts of the complex and also if there is mold in the unit. California law limits how much a landlord can charge for a security deposit (no more than two months rent) and it must be returned to the tenant within 21 days of their departure from the unit. Tenants can also withhold rent or sue if the landlord fails to repair important items like a broken heater or refrigerator.
Modesto is a great location when you like a small town feel with big city living. This city has a great downtown area, plenty of fun festivals to go to, grows more nuts and cows than almost anyplace else, and wants you to come join the fun! Living in Modesto puts you in a great central location for other destinations in California that are much more expensive to live in.
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