Would You Move To San Jose or San Francisco?

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moving house san francisco san josePink Elephants On the Move: Our History with San Francisco and San Jose Moving

At Pink Elephants on the Move, we are a family-owned and operated California moving company. Located in and based out of San Jose, CA, our team of expert moving professionals specializes in everything from commercial moving, storage solutions, packing services, piano movinglocal moving, and long-distance moving.

For our team of enthusiastic professionals here at Pink Elephants, customer satisfaction is so much more than just a slogan or a statistic. Instead, customer satisfaction is among our top priorities. From the moment our local movers meet with you to discuss rates and give you your free moving estimate, every choice we make throughout the remainder of the process will be rooted in our drive to give you the simplest, most cost-efficient, and most stress-free moving experience you could possibly hope for.

San Jose or San Francisco - where will your movers be heading?

choosing cities san jose san franciscoChoosing Between California Cities

One of the most common moves that we see performed from our outpost in San Jose, CA, is that of families moving to California and being struck with a crucial question: which Californian city is the correct choice for them?

Two of the most popular destinations that our team has assisted customers in their moving to are San Francisco and San Jose. The features of each city are wonderful, but sometimes nailing down exactly which one is the perfect fit for you can be exceedingly difficult.

Have no fear, for our team at Pink Elephants On the Move is here to help you with this comprehensive breakdown.

compare and contrast citiesSan Francisco vs. San Jose – Full Comparison & Difference in 2023

This comparison guide aims to provide our customers with a comprehensive view of our uniquely internal position on the pros, cons, and everything in between about San Jose and San Francisco.

san francisco houses
San Francisco is known for it’s sloping streets and colorful yet solid built homes

San Francisco

With its beautiful and scenic location just by the San Francisco Bay, this city is a perfect place to live in the Golden State. Located precisely on the precipice of the peninsula of land that just barely separates the larger Pacific Ocean from the San Francisco Bay area, from Golden Gate Park to the liveliness of downtown to the city’s incredible public transportation systems, San Francisco is a remarkable city.

san jose winchester mystery house
San Jose has many attractions to offer such as the Winchester Mystery House

San Jose

Unlike San Francisco, San Jose is not located near a beautiful body of water. Despite its placement in the South Bay area, San Jose is actually a full 11 miles away from the Pacific Ocean. Part of Santa Clara County, San Jose still has plenty to offer, especially to families searching for a more low-key California lifestyle among the San Jose Sharks.

silicon valley san joseSan Jose – The Capital of Silicon Valley

San Jose has the unique position of being one the preeminent leading technology hubs of not just California but of the United States as a whole. North San Jose is in the heart of Silicon Valley and, as a result, has high-tech at its forefront and is an ideal place to work with many software developers and software development companies.

San Jose is currently home to approximately 6600 tech firms and startups, meaning that there are numerous job opportunities and a very low unemployment rate. The list of the predominant major employers of San Jose features the likes of IBM, Western Digital, Tesla, Wholefoods, eBay, Google, Uber, and Amazon. In other words, San Jose is a veritable incubator of the tech industry that offers many high-paying jobs in the field.

Silicon Valley is named as such because of the silicon chips it so infamously became home to the production of in the early ’70s. Ever since then, the larger Santa Clara area (very much including San Jose) has been positively bursting with booming tech industry growth and development. Consistently attracting only the best in the field to the region for decades now, young professionals are constantly moving to San Jose with the ultimate goal of finding work within the industry.

tech sector employment san jose san francisco
There is no shortage of work in the tech sector in either San Jose or San Francisco

job market san jose san franciscoSan Francisco vs. San Jose – Job Market

While San Francisco has a definitively higher cost of living (and higher housing costs) than San Jose and may not have the Silicon Valley name that attracts so many young professionals looking to flock there, San Francisco can offer wonderful opportunities for professionals in the tech industry as well.

San Francisco is home to the corporate headquarters for numerous large brands like Salesforce, AirBnB, and multiple other tech giants that are constantly searching for new employees who can usher in the next big innovation.

But whereas San Jose, CA, is outright dominated by gargantuan tech companies, San Francisco offers a more inclusive balance in its job market. The entire region of the San Francisco Bay Area provides a great center for science and arts, allowing professional careers outside the technology industries to flourish as well. Much like San Jose, compare the unemployment rate of the San Francisco Bay area to pretty much any other region in California, and it’s incredibly impressive.

The San Jose rate is 2.10%, while the San Francisco rate is 2.00%

cost of living budgeting san jose san francisco
For most Americans, San Jose and San Francisco can be prohibitively expensive. Budgeting very carefully is vital to avoid financial difficulties later.

cost of living san jose san franciscoSan Francisco vs. San Jose – Cost of Living

The cost of living in either San Francisco or San Jose is some of the highest in the United States. Both San Francisco and San Jose have significantly costlier price tags than average cities within the United States, as each of these two cities has consistently been ranked among the top 10 most expensive cities to live in in the entire world.

Both cities feature very high housing prices and unprecedentedly expensive public transportation systems.

The only contributing factor to the cost of living within both San Francisco and San Jose that was within national average prices was healthcare.

The current cost of living in San Jose is 53% higher than the national average, and the current cost of living in San Francisco is 94% higher than the national average.

moving delivery in san francisco
Many of the clients we relocate to either city are on the rental ladder

rental costs san francisco san joseBreaking Down the Cost of Living in Both Cities

As a result of the high cost of living and thriving job market, both San Francisco and San Jose present complex and nuanced portraits of American life.

While each city affords its residents opportunities for great high-paying work, a great amount of that payment will be funneled directly into paying for the high costs of everything around you.

Rent Prices in San Jose

San Jose is only the second highest-priced town for rent prices in the entirety of the United States. A four-person family averages in excess of $3,500 per month.

Similarly, the approximate average rental price of a one-bedroom apartment in San Jose is nearly $2,500 per month.

Rent Prices in San Francisco

For comparison’s sake, the average rental price for a family of four in San Francisco is currently in excess of $4,300 per month.

The average rental price of a one-bedroom apartment in San Francisco is approximately $2,800 per month.

Ultimately, despite the slightly higher price for the larger rental, on average, it costs 16% less per square foot to purchase an apartment in downtown San Francisco than it does in downtown San Jose.

things to see and do san francisco san joseSan Francisco vs. San Jose – Things to Do for Travelers

Both San Francisco and San Jose offer many things for tourists and travelers to enjoy, and have both become hotspots for travelers in their own right. While San Francisco is undoubtedly the more conventional tourist attraction, with Golden Gate Park, the San Francisco Bay area’s natural attractions, or even their iconic public transportation systems, San Jose has plenty of options as well.

center for the performing arts san jose
The Center for the Performing Arts is one of the centerpieces in San Jose’s cultural life

San Jose Attractions

From the VTA Light Rail to its beautiful natural landscapes to outdoor activities to its cultural diversity and cultural events to extensive dining options, San Jose has a ton to offer visitors and residents alike in the way of attractions. There’s a reason that so many of the residents in San Jose become lifelong residents of the city.

From its small-town feel, with a much less chaotic overall flow of traffic than San Francisco, to its emphasis on suburban areas and lower-key living in San Jose, it provides a Californian lifestyle that affords you the best of both worlds. The median age of the city is actually lower than that of San Francisco, meaning that younger people flock to reside more regularly in San Jose.

And why wouldn’t they? From upscale neighborhoods such as Almaden Valley or Willow Glen, or Morgan Hill to live music in downtown San Jose to the eclectic outdoor activities available at Santana Row, San Jose has so much to offer.

italian restaurant san jose
No matter your taste buds, there is a culinary delight to suit every palate in San Jose

resturants san jose san franciscoBest Restaurants in San Jose

With an eclectic mix of culturally diverse residents and influences, San Jose is home to some of the most decadent and adventurously delicious dining options in the state. The city is famous for its authentic and unique takes on both Japanese food and Vietnamese food. Restaurants such as Pho Viet, Pho Dao, and Pho Kim Long were founded in San Jose and helped to pioneer the popularity of pho long before such restaurants were common throughout the country.

Many of these restaurants are positioned in walkable areas and are surrounded by exterior activities and live music venues, all of which work together in harmony to create a vibrant and exciting scene of entertainment and culinary options without ever feeling as claustrophobic or crowded as surrounding cities.

Similarly, San Jose features equally authentic and inclusive restaurants for other diverse cuisine options, such as Mexican and Italian food.

Little Italy

Rooted in fresh ingredients and authentically time-tested recipes, the annual Italian Family Festival is the center of family-owned Italian cuisine in San Jose. Hosted near the town center, the Italian Family Fiesta always brings the incredible Italian food options of San Jose into the spotlight.

In San Jose, Little Italy is situated upon the original settlement grounds for Italian immigrants in the downtown area. This site dates all the way back to the late 1880s, meaning that Little Italy has nearly 150 years of storied history to build off of and honor in San Jose.

Little Italy in San Jose has spent decades now leading the resurgence and rediscovery of this historic Italian settlement, also now known and honored as the River Street Historic District in the public eye.

From spearheading the installation of Piazza Piccola Italia with its engraved and time-honoring bricks to the now iconic Gateway Arch that welcomes visitors to the area to the recruitment of authentic Italian businesses throughout the area, Little Italy has consistently strived to educate visitors and honor their own heritage.

While many Italian immigrants have settled in places such as New York or Los Angeles, San Jose still boasts an interesting and rich immigration history from lifelong residents who love San Jose.

san jose house
Our movers are no strangers to San Jose as we relocate many clients to their spacious homes there

living in san joseLiving in San Jose, California

Here are some further statistics relating to life in San Jose, CA.

  • San Jose is the third most populous city in California.
  • The city has a population of 1.228 million residents.
  • San Jose is considered the gateway to the Bay Area.
  • San Jose is located about an hour south of San Francisco and only thirty minutes from Santa Cruz Beach.
  • San Jose has some of the lowest crime rates of any similarly populated cities in the United States.
  • U.S. News rated San Jose one of the top-five best cities to live in in the United States, thanks to its low crime rate, incredible transport options such as the Light Rail and bus system, booming job market, and more.
golden gate bridge san francisco
No city in California has quite as remarkable a reputation as San Francisco, with it’s historic landmarks and diverse culture

living in san franciscoLiving in San Francisco, California

Here are some further statistics regarding life in San Francisco, CA.

  • The city has a population of 894,584 residents.
  • San Francisco is the fourth most populous city in California.
  • Due to its placement on the peninsula of land between the Pacific Ocean and the San Francisco Bay, San Francisco is only situated upon an area of land that covers 46.9 square miles within its own city limits.
  • This makes the city relatively small when compared to practically any other metropolitan city and makes it the second most densely-populated city in the United States, only being beaten by New York City itself.
  • San Francisco is home to a large, thriving LGBTQ community that has a storied history with San Francisco.
  • The Golden Gate Bridge is one of the most iconic single pieces of architecture in the entirety of the United States and has been featured and/or destroyed in dozens upon dozens of movies, making it one of the most frequently filmed locations in America.
  • Some films that have featured the Golden Gate Bridge: The Maltese Falcon, Vertigo, The Love Bug, Star Trek: The Motion Picture, National Lampoon’s Vacation, Superman, The Abyss, Hulk, Pacific Rim, X-Men: The Last Stand, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, Inside Out, Avengers: Endgame.

public transport san joseSan Jose Transportation

One area in which San Jose has yet to quite catch up to San Francisco is distinctly in public transportation. While both cities feature great options and alternatives for travel, the sheer density of San Francisco’s population has made public transportation a necessity and led to the creation of such useful and iconic fixtures of San Fran’s infrastructure as cable cars.

San Jose does have several options within the downtown San Jose area, but once you’re out of the city, there are far fewer readily available options. So while the metropolitan heart of San Jose is largely walkable and offers many options and modes of transport, it is still highly recommended to have an automobile for your own personal transportation across other areas of the city.

things to do san joseThings to Do When You Move to San Jose

San Jose has many recreational activities for all. It is home to extensive exterior activities, located near several beaches, and is home to several internal attractions as well, such as museums and fixtures of pop culture. Some of these destinations include but are not limited to

  • Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum
  • Tech Museum of Innovation
  • San Jose Museum of Art
  • Children’s Discover Museum
  • Winchester Mystery House
  • Heritage Rose Garden

weather san joseSan Jose Weather

San Jose sports typical weather conditions for Northern California and is indicative of what potential new residents can expect from neighboring cities as well.

September is the hottest month of the year in San Jose. During September, the average temperature reaches 17.75°C (64°F).

The coldest month of the year in San Jose is January. During January, the average temperature reaches 9.4°C (49°F).

July is the month in which San Jose receives the most amount of sunshine, with an average of approximately 14 full hours of sunshine on summer days in July. The wettest month of the year for San Jose is February. During this month, San Jose gets an average of 92.2mm of precipitation, substantially more than it does throughout the rest of the year.

Far and away, the most optimal time to swim in the ocean is in the late summer month of August. This is the time period in which the average sea temperature is 15.40551°C (60°F), the most comfortable and soothing temperature the ocean reaches year-round in this area.

Earthquakes in San Jose and San Francisco

Another factor to consider when moving to the Californian area, in general, is that of earthquakes. The state is notoriously located upon many different fault lines, leaving this state in particular regularly subjected to the inconvenience and occasional devastation of earthquakes.

The cities of San Jose and San Francisco and their surrounding areas are very vulnerable to earthquakes. There are thousands of residents within these two cities alone that live upon or near active fault lines.

education in san jose
San Jose boasts a higher quality of education than most of the country

education san joseEducation Opportunities in San Jose

Schools in San Jose have received an average rating that puts them in the top 30% of all school systems in the state. Generally speaking, San Jose and its education system offer a higher quality of learning than many other surrounding cities, only being bested by school systems in the state that operates with much fewer students and responsibilities overall. For the sheer size of its school districts and population alone, San Jose offers wonderful educational opportunities.

San Jose also has some of the best community colleges in the state. For everything from music to film to art and beyond, classes can be taken at the prestigious De Anza Community College. De Anza Community College is consistently ranked as one of the best in the state.

good idea moving to san joseIs moving to San Jose a good idea?

In conclusion, San Jose is absolutely chief on the list of cities worth moving to. As our team here at Pink Elephants On the Move can personally attest, San Jose is a great place to live whose reputation as an expensive city is well offset by its incredibly active and fertile job marketplace, its delightfully intimately-minded suburbs such as Willow Glen, and its low crime rates.

San Jose has been ranked as one of the best cities to live in in the entire United States. It has a low median age for its residents, despite the fact that it turns so many of those residents into a lifelong residents of San Jose. That means that not only is San Jose bringing new people in on a regular basis, but it’s also proving its merit to them and keeping them here.

San Jose is a more than worthwhile place to move to.

good idea moving to san franciscoIs moving to San Francisco a good idea?

Famous for its amazing food, culture, climate, historical landmarks, and prosperous commercial opportunities, San Francisco is also absolutely an area worth moving to. While the crime rate is less than ideal and its placement as an overall much more densely populated place to live than San Jose, San Francisco offers a bevy of positive features that solidly compete with or even (occasionally) best San Jose.

move with us to san francisco or san jose
No matter the destination, call Pink Elephants on the Move and we’ll get the ball rolling on your relocation today!

pink elephants on the move logoMoving to San Francisco or San Jose

San Francisco and San Jose are two of the most popular destinations for families to move to in the Golden State. They each offer wonderful job opportunities, beautiful scenery, and remarkable public transport. Either one is a winning combination and a beautiful place to reside in.

Whichever you decide, be sure and call Pink Elephants On the Move when you are prepared so that our team can assist you in the move, spanning all the way from the planning and preparation period of moving to the final moments of unloading the truck.

We are here for you to prioritize your needs and to make your moving process as easy and breezy as it should be!

free packing supplies san jose

Free Packing Materials With Every Local Move