Let’s be clear. I love living in San Diego. I think most of the people who live here do as well. That being said, there are a few things I could do without but I live with because in my opinion, the pros in San Diego by far outweigh the cons. Here are a few of the worst aspects to San Diego.
Cost of Housing
Thing number one that isn’t so great and has been receiving a ton of press and news coverage all year is the fact that living in San Diego doesn’t come cheap. In fact, besides Phoenix Arizona, San Diego had the second highest real estate home price appreciation for 2021, clocking in at just over 27% with no signs of a price decrease in sight (July 2020 to July 2021).
Renting does not present a much better picture. Rents are up over 19% versus the same time last year. To buy a house in San Diego, the median home price is hovering right around $860,000. The average rent in San Diego right now for a comparable house to the median price will run you about $4,395 per month. San Diego is an awesome place to live but unfortunately for San Diego residents, the real estate prices reflect this.
California Wild Fires
Thing number two is a big one. It’s going to exactly where you are living in San Diego and the increasing threat of wild fires. Here’s the problem: Wild fires are not going away, in fact the problem is actually getting worse. This isn’t just a San Diego or California problem, it’s happening worldwide. Outside of the safety factor and surviving an actual wild fire, the next biggest concern will be the financial part. Many major insurance carriers are now denying and even dropping clients living in high or severe wild fire zones. Even if you find an insurance carrier, your insurance premiums can be significantly higher because you are in a more hazardous or dangerous San Diego fire zone. Keep wild fire locations and zones in mind as you search for your new home. Are you living in a severe wild fire zone? You definitely need to be aware and be sure.
This is probably one of the most talked about issues to living in the San Diego. There are a couple primary issues I think that are most concerning. First is the humanity side of the issue. It’s tough to see and watch people down on their luck. It’s difficult to experience this on a daily basis let alone to be homeless, I can’t imagine. The other issues that go along with this are cleanliness and safety.
There are certain areas in San Diego that have a much more prevalent population of homeless than others. By far, you will see more homeless encampments and communities in the east side of East Village in Downtown San Diego around 15th, 16th, and especially 17th avenue. This is where a lot of the facilities, shelters, and help is located so it makes sense you get more of a congregation in these areas. You will get homeless throughout the San Diego though. Statistically the numbers of homeless have grown in San Diego but I don’t think I feel much of a difference than say 10 years ago when I first moved to the city. Feels about the same to me.
This is a tough one for San Diego but when the few sports teams we have are doing well, San Diego gets behind them. That being said, we have the San Diego Padres and Petco Park… and that’s about it. Post season or not, San Diego Padre games are always a ton of fun but we don’t have all the other sports teams like other major cities. We lost the San Diego Chargers. I mean, no big shocker here. I personally think the Muppets would do a better job with the team ownership than the current ownership. We don’t have an NBA team anymore. San Diego Clippers anyone! We don’t have an NHL team. We do have the Gulls which is an awesome experience, highly recommended.
Keep an eye on San Diego State football. They are finally going to have a brand new football stadium opening next year called Snapdragon Stadium. It’s perfectly sized for SDSU football games and crowds and will be something to check out. The stadium will be world class. Also, the SDSU basketball team is almost always ranked in the top 25. We don’t have all the sports but what we do have is pretty solid.
You need a car (lack of public transport)
If you live in San Diego, you need a car. The public transportation system can be a challenge at best. It works for some people but for the vast majority of us, the reality is just about everyone has or drives a car. San Diego is extremely spread out and owning a car is pretty much an absolute must. There are a few locations and neighborhoods that the trolley services and might be feasible to use for communing but it doesn’t work for most of us. There is a commuter train (the coaster or sprinter) that runs north and south in San Diego but most commuters still use their own car which leads to some pretty serious rush hour traffic. Not as bad as LA or Orange County traffic but still enough to be annoying. My advice is to plan alternate times to drive or routes around the major traffic jams. All in, if you don’t like public transportation and you like cars or trucks, this is the place for you.
Those are few of the worst things about San Diego in my opinion. Overall, San Diego is awesome. My thoughts are if this is the worst, life could be a lot worse.
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