Affordable Home in California: Finding the Best Deals

If you’re in the market for an affordable home in California, it pays to look outside of the major cities. A report from Zillow named Irvine as one of the most expensive cities in California with a median home value of $790,800. And while San Diego and Los Angeles have more affordable options compared to Irvine, your best bet for an affordable home is likely be found outside these metropolitan areas.


When you look outside the big cities, you open yourself up to neighborhoods with more reasonable housing prices—many of which are located close to top employers and attractions. For example, locations like Riverside and Fontana are just a short drive from Los Angeles but offer substantially lower home prices.

Additionally, it’s important to keep updated on where new jobs are opening—new employment opportunities can cause a surge in housing demand and subsequently drive up prices. By understanding what areas are developing faster than others you can identify locations with less competition where you may be able to find a good deal on your home.


Consider Manufactured or Mobile Homes

If you’re looking for an affordable home in California, Manufactured Homes and Mobile Homes are two options worth considering. For the most part, both are far more budget-friendly than traditional stick-built homes, without sacrificing quality. Additionally, many Manufactured or Mobile Home communities come with amenities like pools and recreational facilities, which can add to your overall enjoyment of the home.

Manufactured homes are built in a factory according to a particular code and are transported to their intended location on a truck or trailer. Mobile homes, on the other hand, are designed and built while already located on their permanent wheeled chassis.

Consider speaking with a realtor who specializes in finding affordable housing in California when researching these types of homes. With their help you may find Manufactured and Mobile Homes that offer everything you’re looking for—at a fraction of the cost!


Look for Low Down Payment Loan and Assistance Programs

When it comes to getting an affordable home in California, one of the best ways is to look for a loan or assistance program that offers a low down payment. Of course, you’ll also have to make sure that you qualify for the program, so it’s important to do your research.

Fortunately, there are plenty of options out there, including ones tailored specifically for Californians. Here are some examples:

  • The California Homebuyer’s Down Payment Assistance Program offers assistance up to 3% of the purchase price of the home.
  • The CalHFA MyHome Assistance Program provides up to 5% assistance with no repayment or accrual of interest due.
  • The FHA loan program requires just 3.5% down and has flexible qualifying guidelines.

These programs are not only great for helping you get into an affordable home, but they also can help reduce your monthly payments by lowering your interest rate and helping with your closing costs as well. So be sure to research these options thoroughly before making a decision.

Search for Foreclosures and Short Sales

If you’re looking for the best deals on a home in California, then searching for foreclosures and short sales is definitely worth your time. Foreclosures and short sales are homes that are typically sold at a reduced price by the lender who owns them.


Foreclosures occur when homeowners default on their mortgages and the lender takes possession of the property. These homes are usually sold for less than market value, so they can be great deals if you don’t mind a little work.

Short Sales

Short sales are less common than foreclosures, but they can also be a great way to get an affordable home in California. With this type of sale, a lender agrees to let a homeowner sell the property at a price that is lower than what is owed on the mortgage.

If you’re interested in looking into foreclosures or short sales here in California, it’s important to work with an experienced real estate agent who knows how to locate these types of properties and negotiate good deals on your behalf. It’s also important to note that these types of transactions usually involve lengthy paperwork and complex legal processes, so having an experienced professional by your side during this process can be invaluable.

Consider Rent-to-Own or Lease Option Homes

If you’re in the market for an affordable home in California, there are a few options that you should consider. One option is to look into a rent-to-own or lease option home. These programs offer buyers the opportunity to rent a house for an agreed-upon amount of time before purchasing it at a predetermined price.

The rent-to-own or lease option arrangements can benefit both buyers and sellers in the following ways:

  1. Buyers: This type of arrangement allows buyers to “try out” a property before committing to purchasing it, with the added benefit of not having to pay out large cash sums upfront. It also allows buyers who have poor credit scores or don’t have enough money for a deposit to get into a home and start building up their credit score while they live in the house.
  2. Sellers: Lease option and rent-to-own agreements help sellers move their properties more quickly than traditional sales methods, as well as helping them build up their profits since buyers typically pay higher rental rates than what they’d pay if they were buying the property outright. Sellers are also able to hold onto their homes even after tenants move out since they still have an agreement with tenants allowing them to buy the property at set prices when tenants are ready to do so.

Negotiate the Best Deal for an Affordable Home in California

The key to getting an affordable home in California is to get the best deal. Knowing how to negotiate in the real estate market can be difficult, but you can learn some strategies to help you get the best deal out of a potential home sale.

Do Your Research

Before you start negotiating, make sure you do your research. Look into market trends in the area, comparable properties, and other factors that will affect the listing price. This will help you determine how much wiggle room there is for negotiation.

Set Target Prices

Based on your research, set target prices for yourself when considering any property. This helps keep you from getting swept away in emotion during negotiations and helps ensure that you stay within your budget parameters.

Have an Appraisal done

Getting an appraisal done can also be helpful when negotiating the purchase price of a home. An appraisal gives an objective assessment of value which can help inform negotiations and give you more leverage when setting a budget and negotiating with sellers.

You may also want to consider getting pre-approved for a loan or working with a real estate agent that has experience with negotiating real estate deals. These professionals can help guide your decisions and ensure that you get the best possible deal on an affordable home in California.


In conclusion, there are many things to consider when looking for an affordable home in California. From understanding how to structure your bids to understanding the market dynamics in the area, it is important to be aware of all the factors that will influence the price of the home you are looking at. While it can be daunting to search for a home, with the right research and tools, you can find the perfect home for your needs. So start looking; it won’t be long until you find your own slice of paradise in California

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