Survey says Elk Grove performs poorly on job opportunities, but has 4th most affordable housing in state

December 6, 2018 | 

A survey released today shows that while Elk Grove is one of the most affordable housing communities in California, that affordability is tempered by poor performance as someplace to find a job.

The survey of "2018’s Best & Worst California Cities for Finding a Job" from personal finance website surveyed 254 cities across the state. The study looked at 16 metrics with measurements on items ranging from job opportunities, which was given the most weight, to social life which measured things like nightlife.

According to their survey, Elk Grove was ranked in the bottom half of the 254 California cities studied coming in at a ranking of 148 in the job market category. While Elk Grove ranked poorly in the job market category, other factors lifted its overall rating.

Among the factors that brought Elk Grove's rating up to the 93rd place in the overall score was affordability. Long known as an equity refuge for Bay Area transplants, Elk Grove was rated as the fourth most affordable housing in the state. 

Another factor which enhanced the score was Elk Grove's 17th ranking in the socio-economic category. Among metrics in this classification are median annual income, average commute time, housing costs, assess to employee benefits, transportation costs, safety, and social life. 

The study notes that California has a "$2.6 trillion economy which is larger than the individual economies of all but five countries." Although the state is enjoying relative low unemployment and steady job growth, it is vexed with what some economist and politicians are calling a housing affordability crisis.

Among those sounding the alarm on the effects of housing affordability has on job seekers is Ayal Chen-Zion Labor Economist and Ph.D. Candidate at the University of California, San Diego, who participated in the WalletHub study. 

"One of the biggest challenges facing California’s job seekers is that of the high cost of living," Chen-Zion said. "This is especially true in the larger cities where housing prices have been growing quickly." 

High-cost real estate, particularly in the Bay Area has also meant businesses are moving some of their operations to the Central Valley. Through the efforts of their real estate broker, San Leandro-based Mi Rancho, a leading tortilla bakery, will be moving some of its production to Elk Grove in the coming months.

While the relocation of some of Mi Rancho's production is expected to bring about 200 jobs, Elk Grove's economic development efforts have almost exclusively focused on offering incentives to real estate developers with ties to the city. One such developer is Pappas Developments who have received several multi-million dollar incentives over the last seven years for among other things, the recently opened Costco store. 

Other nearby cities included in the ratings were Folsom, Rancho Cordova, Roseville, Sacramento, and West Sacramento which were ranked 12, 164, 24, 122, and 178. 

Notably, Folsom was rated number one in the socio-economic rankings and was 12th in the state in the overall category. Folsom was also ranked second in the state for the highest median annual income, adjusted for cost of living. 

Joining Elk Grove in the most affordable communities was El Dorado Hills, which was first in the state, and Folsom, which came in second place. 

Source: WalletHub

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D.J. Blutarsky said...

This is not surprising. All one needs to do is follow the money trail to understand Elk Grove politics. The home building industry is the #1 show in town and the various City Council campaign coffers show this. Hewlett Packard is not beating a path to Elk Grove.

Our multi-million dollar-a-year Economic Development department is a song and dance routine in search of regional, state and federal grant monies. And in case a prospective employer does call, we can be assured that a well-paid live body is there to answer the call and not have it re-routed to a call center overseas!

Yes, the occasional tortilla factory score will come along at times, but by the time the press release blitz has played out across every imaginable media outlet, the viewer is left with a stale taste in their mouths!

The sooner that our leaders understand and accept that Elk Grove is just another one of those chain-store, soul-less suburbs with no town center; no redeeming destination qualities, but is just another valley town with relatively cheap homes, the better off our tax dollars will be spent.

Don't even think about a sales tax increase next election. Let them eat freshly baked tortillas!

JD said...

In relation to Elk Grove, the results are not especially revealing. Mostly just confirms what many of us already knew (as D. J. pointed out above).

However, I do question their methodology, particularly when it comes to methodology. Some of the highest ranked cities (Danville, Dublin, San Ramon, Pleasanton) have million dollar homes. Apparently WalletHub thinks the state is full of rich people and make up a large percentage of the State’s population. I call BS to that. I have a 6 figure income, am in the top 10% income bracket, and yet, I can’t afford most of these places! Folsom is a tiny bit more reasonable, but I’m not sure I could afford to live there either. I don’t like Elk Grove (I call it suburban hell) but I feel like I’m stuck here because just about everywhere else is too expensive and I’d have a mortgage that consumes half my paycheck.

JD said...

Sorry, that should have been “housing affordability.” As in, I question their methodology when it comes to housing affordability. Sorry for the Freudian slip.

Josie said... people are killing me. When shopping and getting gas at Costco are peoples highlight of the day I would say 'we have a problem'. Nextdoor even has a topic as to what is the proper etiquette at the Costco gas pumps.

'suburban hell', pretty much sums it up!

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