Berkeley is a larger medium-sized coastal city (i.e. on the ocean, a bay, or inlet) located in the state of California. With a population of 121,363 people and 35 constituent neighborhoods, Berkeley is the 52nd largest community in California. Berkeley has an unusually large stock of pre-World War II architecture, making it one of the older and more historic cities.
Berkeley home prices are not only among the most expensive in California, but Berkeley real estate also consistently ranks among the most expensive in America.
Berkeley is a decidedly white-collar city, with fully 94.01% of the workforce employed in white-collar jobs, well above the national average. Overall, Berkeley is a city of professionals, managers, and sales and office workers. There are especially a lot of people living in Berkeley who work in teaching (14.37%), management occupations (12.01%), and office and administrative support (8.26%).
Also of interest is that Berkeley has more people living here who work in computers and math than 95% of the places in the US.
Of important note, Berkeley is also a city of artists. Berkeley has more artists, designers and people working in media than 90% of the communities in America. This concentration of artists helps shape Berkeley’s character.
And if you like science, one thing you'll find is that Berkeley has lots of scientists living in town - whether they be life scientists, physical scientists (like astronomers), or social scientists (like geographers!). So, if you're scientific-minded, you might like it here too.
A relatively large number of people in Berkeley telecommute to their jobs. Overall, about 10.71% of the workforce works from home. While this may seem like a small number, as a fraction of the total workforce it ranks among the highest in the country. These workers are often telecommuters who work in knowledge-based, white-collar professions. For example, Silicon Valley has large numbers of people who telecommute. Other at-home workers may be self-employed people who operate small businesses out of their homes.
Berkeley is a nice balance between life in a moderately big city and the interesting diversions and culture that come from having a big college student population. The thousands of students who arrive on campus every fall will find that Berkeley has plenty of amenities and opportunities for them, while residents of Berkeley enjoy the lectures, music, art, and economic trickle-down that colleges typically provide. "Town and Gown" complement each other in Berkeley.
Not only is Berkeley a city with many college students, but it also retains many recent graduates who are looking to start new careers, creating a decent-sized population of people who are young, single, educated, and upwardly-mobile. This makes it a good choice for other relocating single professionals. Here, these young singles will find many others like themselves, with opportunities for friendships, socializing, romance, and fun.
Berkeley is also nautical, which means that parts of it are somewhat historic and touch the ocean or tidal bodies of water, such as inlets and bays. Quite often, nautical areas such as these attract visitors and locals who come to enjoy the scenery and various waterfront activities.
One downside of living in Berkeley is that it can take a long time to commute to work. In Berkeley, the average commute to work is 30.97 minutes, which is quite a bit higher than the national average. On the other hand, local public transit is widely used in the city, so leaving the car at home and taking transit is often a viable alternative. In addition, it is also a pedestrian-friendly city. Many of Berkeley’s neighborhoods are dense enough and have amenities close enough together that people find it feasible to get around on foot.
For the size of the city, public transportation in Berkeley is quite heavily used. Mostly, people who use it for their daily commute are taking the subway. For Berkeley, the benefits are reduced air pollution and congestion on the highways.
Do you have a 4-year college degree or graduate degree? If so, you may feel right at home in Berkeley. 73.83% of adults here have a 4-year degree or graduate degree, whereas the national average for all cities and towns is just 21.84%.
The per capita income in Berkeley in 2018 was $50,619, which is wealthy relative to California and the nation. This equates to an annual income of $202,476 for a family of four. However, Berkeley contains both very wealthy and poor people as well.
Berkeley is an extremely ethnically-diverse city. The people who call Berkeley home describe themselves as belonging to a variety of racial and ethnic groups. The greatest number of Berkeley residents report their race to be White, followed by Asian. Berkeley also has a sizeable Hispanic population (people of Hispanic origin can be of any race). People of Hispanic or Latino origin account for 11.40% of the city’s residents. Important ancestries of people in Berkeley include German, English, Irish, Italian, and European.
In addition, Berkeley has a lot of people living here who were born outside of the US (21.08%).
The most common language spoken in Berkeley is English. Other important languages spoken here include Spanish and Chinese.