Renter's Guide to Walnut Creek
Located in the beautiful East Bay region of California, Walnut Creek is a delightful mixture of historical buildings, high-end retail shops, hiking trails and fine dining establishments. From regional art to high-end office jobs, you’ll quickly find that this is a small city with big opportunities.
Walnut Creek, CA is 25 miles northeast of San Francisco (and all of its tourist destinations), yet also only half the size and roughly 12 times less populated. Heading in the opposite direction, Walnut Creek is 71 miles southwest of Sacramento, which is 7 times more populated and 5 times bigger. Finally, if you don’t mind a longer drive, Walnut Creek is 364 miles southeast of Los Angeles, which is about 60 times more populated and 25 times larger.
Walnut Creek’s climate is milder than almost anywhere else in California; as such, the Walnut Creek weather does not greatly vary from season to season. Winters average 48°F and can have periodic rains, but still tend to generally feel more like autumn. Spring temperatures are 58°F on average, and will often incur steady rains. Summers average 70°F and can get very hot, but nowhere near the rest of the state. Autumns are 61°F and are generally much warmer and more pleasant than elsewhere in the country.
Walnut Creek, CA Demographics
- Total Population66,799
Female 30,936Male 35,863
- Median Age47.9
Cost of Living in Walnut Creek, CA
With 11 routes serving the city in total, County Connection handles all of Walnut Creek’s public transportation. The average cost for a bus ticket in Walnut Creek is $2.00, and bus passes start at $20 for 12 rides. Walnut Creek has an average commute time of 30 minutes, which is 5 minutes longer than the national average.
The cost of living in Walnut Creek is much higher than the national average as well. The average inexpensive meal in Walnut Creek costs $42, which is three times the normal price. A gallon of milk costs $4.50 (when $2.97 is the country’s average), and $4.00 for a dozen eggs (whereas the average price elsewhere is $2.33). Fortunately, this high cost of living in Walnut Creek, California somewhat offset by its low utility rates. The average cost of utilities for a 915-square-foot apartment is only about $65 per month, which is nearly $100 less than the national average.
Average Rent in Walnut Creek, CA
- Walnut Creek, CA Average Rental Price, November 2018$2,375/mo
- 1 Bedroom$2,187
- 2 Bedrooms$2,697
Walnut Creek, CA Apartment Rent Ranges
- > $2,00069%
Walnut Creek, CA Rent Trends
|All rentals||Studio||1 Bed||2 Beds||3 Beds|
|Nov / 2018||$2,375||$1,984||$2,187||$2,697|
|Jan / 2018||$2,369||$1,984||$2,187||$2,682|
|Sept / 2017||$2,410||$2,008||$2,269||$2,673|
|May / 2017||$2,389||$2,004||$2,174||$2,746|
|Jan / 2017||$2,305||$1,872||$2,125||$2,621|
|Sept / 2016||$2,317||$1,886||$2,158||$2,607|
|May / 2016||$2,359||$1,866||$2,229||$2,629|
|Jan / 2016||$2,235||$1,838||$2,082||$2,512|
|Sept / 2015||$2,247||$1,861||$2,106||$2,505|
|May / 2015||$2,138||$1,748||$2,002||$2,386|
Average rent is projected to grow by 1% in 2018 compared to 2017.
Please note that projected rent growth is calculated at city level.
Average rent values on this page are aggregated from data from the following zip codes: 94595945969459794598
Living in Walnut Creek, CA
If you want to know what it’s like living in Walnut Creek, imagine a wholesome and friendly family environment with well-formed communities. You can also expect to enjoy a healthy smattering of diversity while living in Walnut Creek, too. In 2016 urbanist Richard Florida and renowned New York University professor Steven Pedigo officially declared Walnut Creek one of “The Best Places to Live” out of the entire country.
With that said, if you were expecting to wear shorts most of the year (like other places in California), a milder climate could be one of the cons of living in Walnut Creek. One of the many pros of living in Walnut Creek, however, is never having to endure freezing temperatures or heavy snow.
Things to do in Walnut Creek
Walnut Creek, California is filled with fresh activities and fun things to do. For family attractions, Arbolado Park is one of the most beautiful places in Walnut Creek, offering a children’s playground and a wide range of sports facilities. Be sure to also check out the swimming complex, dog park and skateboarding facilities at Heather Farm Park.
Other attractions and points of interest include the Lindsay Wildlife Experience (Lindsay Wildlife Museum), where you can watch wild animals become rehabilitated, and the twice-a-year “Movies and Music Under the Stars” event featuring live music and movies at Civic Park. For free things to do, why not check out the YMCA or volunteer at the Animal Rescue Foundation (ARF)?
The best restaurants in Walnut Creek (CA) are arguably also the best in the entire state; these cultural establishments include Va de Vi (a small eatery serving dishes and wines from around the world), Sasa (contemporary Japanese cuisine), Maria Maria (a local Mexican chain restaurant with live music), Fleming’s (an upscale steakhouse that makes for the ultimate couples’ attraction), 1515 Restaurant & Lounge (another great spot for date nights), Le Cheval (for Vietnamese flavors), and Lark Creek (American food served in both indoor and sidewalk seating).
For shopping, downtown Walnut Creek (CA) has dozens of trendy boutiques, and the Walnut Creek Mall provides you with larger designer retailers such as Ross, Nordstrom, and the Apple Store. Otherwise, Target and CVS covers your more basic needs.
Employment and Economy
Thanks to no payroll taxes, Walnut Creek’s economy flourishes. In total, three major business districts (BART Transit Hub, the Shadelands, and Downtown) each contain ample employment opportunities. Between the John Muir Medical Center and Kaiser Permanente, Walnut Creek has a strong presence in the healthcare industry as well. Del Monte Foods recently moved its headquarters to Walnut Creek from San Francisco, and the Heffernan Insurance Brokers is also headquartered in Walnut Creek.
Walnut Creek, CA Households
- Total Number of Households30,317
Family 17,193Non-family 13,124
Children 6,778No Children 23,539
- Average People Per Household2.17
- Median Household Income$82,120
- Median Housing Costs Per Month$1,643
Education in Walnut Creek
The Brandman campus in Walnut Creek, CA provides a wide selection of on-campus and online bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Meanwhile, Northgate High School has demonstrated consistently solid performance marks and even offers high-end athletic activities such as water polo.
Walnut Creek, CA Education Statistics
- No High School1%
- Some High School13%
- Some College20%
- Associate Degree7%
- Bachelor Degree36%
- Graduate Degree24%
Tips for Renting in Walnut Creek
If you are moving from Los Angeles to Walnut Creek, don’t get a new wardrobe. Winter aside, a light shirt and jeans will do for most of the year. Also, you’ll need to keep your car.
Walnut Creek is not the friendliest city for smokers. If you live in a multiunit residence, tenants’ rights do not include smoking. You’re allowed to smoke on allotted downtown sidewalks, in single-family homes, and on golf courses, but everywhere else is off limits according to local ordinances. The fines start at $100 for the first offense and go all the way up to $500 for multiple infractions.
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