Pros and cons of living in Chula Vista, California

Are you thinking of moving to Southern California but don’t want to go to a major city? Chula Vista might be the perfect place for you. But you need to know more about this city to see if it suits your lifestyle. So, what’re the pros and cons of moving to Chula Vista? 

There are several advantages to living in Chula Vista, such as the diversity, excellent schools, safety, family-friendly environment, and weather for outdoor activities. But this city has some issues too. Cons of living in Chula Vista include low air quality, long commutes, and high cost of living.

Chula Vista is the 7th biggest city in SoCal which means it’s big enough to be important. Despite the cons, it’s a fantastic city with several great characteristics. Its imperfections shouldn’t deter you from moving there. So, read on to see if moving to Chula Vista is worth it.

Pros of Living in Chula Vista

Living in Chula Vista is superb. The city comes with several advantages for residents. So, here’s what to expect when moving there.

Great Diversity

Ethnical diversity is a big thing in Chula Vista. It has a Hispanic heritage and other ethnic groups such as White Non-Hispanics, Asians, and Blacks. The diversity here isn’t just in numbers but also in peaceful coexistence among everyone. So, no matter your ethnic group, you’ll find a community to belong to here.

Excellent Schools

Chula Vista has several good schools for your kids to attend if you’re moving with kids. Two school districts operate in the city, and between them, there are enough schools from elementary to secondary school. In addition, many elementary and high schools in the city have high ratings on However, there is only one tertiary institution here, and it’s a community college. So your kid may have to leave the city for higher education.


When it comes to safety, Chula Vista is one of the best places you can live. It’s the safest city in San Diego County and one of the safest in California as well. The total crime rate is 31% below the national average, and property crime is 34% lower. Violent crimes are also 13% lower here than the national average.

The city is safer than 39% of cities in the United States. Living here means you have a 1 in 59 chance of being a crime victim. Since safety will be one of the major determinants of where to live, Chula Vista should be on your list when moving to California.

Ideal Weather for Outdoor Activities

The legendary Southern California climate is also present here. So you enjoy several days of warmth throughout the year to use as you wish. One of the best ways to spend a sunny day is outdoors, and Chula Vista makes that possible for you. The city has miles of canyons, coastal landscape, and trails to explore. In addition, there are golf courses, parks, marinas for touring the ocean, and access to beaches. 

If you’re an outdoorsy person, Chula Vista is perfect for you as you can do everything from water sports to hiking. Apart from outdoor activities, you can participate in several indoor activities, such as visiting the various museums in the city.


All the outdoor space and great weather that this city offers make it perfect for raising a family in it. The environment is conducive with its safe neighborhoods and sound public school system.

Cons of Living in Chula Vista

Chula Vista is a mixture of positives and negatives. If you’re living there, you can expect the following issues.

High Cost of Living

Like most cities in this part of California, Chula Vista is an expensive place to live. Its cost of living is 47.1% higher than the national average. While this is still a few points lower than the California average, it’s significant. Healthcare in the city is more affordable, but other expenses are generally higher.

Another area where you have to pay a lot is housing. Housing here isn’t affordable whether you are buying or renting. The average cost is $721,046, which is even higher than the California average and more than double the national average. So, if you are interested in buying a house here, be ready to spend a fortune. Even rent here is high, with the average rent for an apartment being $1,986.

However, the city has several neighborhoods, making it possible to find a cheaper place somewhere. Whether it’s the city’s center or the planned communities on East Chula Vista, you’ll have access to several options.

Long Commutes

The average time for one way commute in the United States for 2019 was 27.6 minutes. But for Chula Vista, the average time is 30.9 minutes. No wonder it’s one of the worst cities for commuters in the United States. So if you are living here, you must be ready to spend a lot of time in a car, especially if you are working outside Chula Vista.

Despite its size, the public transport options for Chula Vista aren’t that many. This explains why WalkScore gives it a transit score of 36. The walkability score is 42, and the bike score is 41, showing that you need a car to move around the city effectively. However, there are several bike lanes and paths throughout the city. The city even has a pedestrian master plan designed to make the city more walkable.

Low Air Quality

When it comes to ozone pollution in the US, San Diego County has one of the worst. Therefore, the quality of air in Chula Vista is particularly low. There are days when particulates are even present at high levels. This air quality is bad for the respiratory system leading to numerous heart and lung issues. If you have any respiratory conditions, you need to ask your doctor to know if living here won’t worsen your condition.

In Conclusion

Chula Vista is a good place to live, with a livability score of 67/100. It has several good qualities that residents will benefit from. While the negative ones can sometimes overshadow them, the pros outweigh the cons. So, it might be a great city for you to live in.