Santa Monica (SaMo) is an upscale beach town. The city is a longtime stomping ground for professionals, retirees, artists and well-heeled residents who appreciate its beautiful surroundings, laid-back vibe, and countless amenities.
With multiple beaches, parks, and hiking trails, locals love the taking advantage of Southern California’s stunning vistas, access to nature, and perfect weather. If you find yourself living in Santa Monica, you may find yourself spending a lot of time outdoors.
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Santa Monica Neighborhoods
Santa Monica Real Estate
Home prices in Santa Monica are higher than the Los Angeles County average. So, if you want to live in this remarkable beach city, but do not have the financing to acquire a single family home, check out the extensive inventory of condos and townhomes; they help balance out SaMo’s affordability. Regrettably, for bargain hunters, most of the potential fixer uppers have already been rehabbed.
Residential architecture in Santa Monica runs the gamut; no single style dominates. Some of the earliest homes built in Santa Monica are Shotgun or Bungalow. Several Ranch homes were built at the turn of the early 20th century. If you like styles from the Postwar era, be sure to house hunt in the Sunset Park or Ocean Park neighborhoods. By the 1950s, Modern homes came on the scene, followed by Contemporary styles from the late 1970s onward.
Luxury condominium towers line Ocean Avenue while Contemporary condos are more evenly spread out across the city.
Mediterranean and Contemporary homes make up much of the real estate north of Montana Street. The lots in this part of town are also big enough for backyard pools. Many recently built homes include solar panel arrays and tech upgrades like electric vehicle charging stations and smart home capabilities.
Several office buildings and hotels Downtown are Art Deco and Beaux Art-style. The Sears store (built in 1947) is an excellent example of Late Moderne architecture. It sits at the junction of 4th Street and Colorado Avenue and is a registered historic landmark.
Santa Monica Neighborhoods
Each Santa Monica neighborhood has a unique vibe based on its history, architecture, terrain, and proximity to the ocean.
- Downtown Santa Monica is highly walkable (WalkScore 91) and has great public transportation options, including a Metro Expo Line stop. Metro will get you from Santa Monica to Culver City, Downtown Los Angeles and all the way out to Pasadena. A high concentration of Contemporary Luxury condominiums is found here.
- Ocean Park is just north of Venice in the southwest corner of Santa Monica. The district boasts a small town feel and abuts a popular stretch of beach. It is easy to navigate by bike (BikeScore 90) and is very pedestrian-friendly (WalkScore 91). Ocean Park contains bungalows and condominiums and is a favorite neighborhood with artists and working professionals, including those working in SoCal’s tech hub, known to some as “Silicon Beach.”
- Sunset Park is a peaceful residential neighborhood between Lincoln and South Centinela Boulevard just east of Ocean Park. The community is diverse. Most houses were built in the 1930s-1940s, but you will find Contemporary homes here, too.
- Northeast is located between Wilshire Boulevard and Montana Avenue, north of 21st Street and adjacent to Brentwood. This is an excellent spot to find Contemporary and Mediterranean homes. Lots here are big enough that dwellings are set back from the street; most have a front lawn, and many have backyard pools.
- Pico is one the most diverse communities in Santa Monica, situated between Pico and Olympic Boulevards. Virginia Avenue Park and Bergamot Station (art galleries) sit within its perimeter. The housing stock here is a broad mix of styles, but it is an excellent place to hunt for Craftsman, Shotgun, and California Bungalow homes.
- Mid-City West incorporates part of Downtown Santa Monica and runs between Wilshire and Santa Monica Boulevards, including some areas stretching to Olympic. The 18th Street Arts Center is one of its gems, and there are dozens of eateries too. Townhomes, duplexes and luxury condominiums round out this neighborhood’s housing mix.
- Wilshire Montana (aka “North of Wilshire”) is an upscale palm-lined neighborhood made up of Craftsman homes and luxury condominiums. Residents love the proximity to the beach and Downtown Santa Monica while living in a quiet area of town.
- North of Montana is comprised of Ranch or Mediterranean homes, along with beautiful English cottages and townhomes. Residents enjoy their go-to spots on Montana and frequent the bi-weekly farmers market nearby.
Santa Monica REALTORS®
Looking to buy or sell a home in Santa Monica? RubyHome’s licensed real estate agents are your SaMo neighborhood experts, and we’d love to help! If you are buying, contact us to schedule private showings of the homes that pique your interest. For sellers, we’ll arrange a convenient time to meet, create a custom market report, and formulate a fair asking price for your home.
We can provide up-to-the-minute Santa Monica real estate statistics: average area home prices; house sales history; and information about the broader L.A. real estate market so that you can make a well-informed decision.
What’s more, our agents work full-time – you’ll be partnering with a dedicated expert whose only aim is to help negotiate the quickest home sale possible.