10 Things to Know Before Moving to San Jose

San Jose, CA

San Jose is more than a destination—it’s a lifestyle. In the heart of Silicon Valley, this California city has a thriving tech industry, a gorgeous natural landscape, and cultural diversity. If you’re thinking of moving to San Jose, here are ten things you should know before you get there!

A Healthy Economy

Exterior shot of HP Pavilion in San Jose, CA
Photo by Travis Wise

The job market in San Jose is booming with technology and computer engineering among the top fields. Of all the 2015 investments venture capitalists made in the U.S., 35% were in Silicon Valley and San Jose companies. Unemployment is low at 3.9%, and San Jose has some of the top earners in the U.S.

Low Crime Rate

City Hall in San Jose, CA
Photo by HarshLight

San Jose has consistently been regarded as a safe city, even ranking #6 on SmartAsset’s Safest Cities in America List in 2015. The overall crime rate in San Jose is 4% lower than the national average and 35% safer than other major cities in the U.S.

Amazing Weather

Skyline of San Jose, CA
Photo by the_tahoe_guy

If you’ve been dreaming about playing beach volleyball on Christmas, then San Jose is your utopia! Temperatures average around 69°F in summer and around 49°F in winter. Also, the air quality index is 3% better than the national average. And with 301 days of sunshine a year, there’s no excuse to stay indoors!

Diverse Culture

Obon Festival in San Jose, CA
Photo by Kenneth Lu

San Jose has no shortage of cultural diversity. Japantown is one of the last authentic Japantowns in the U.S. and offers visitors a chance to explore the vivacious culture of the Japanese through food markets, restaurants, and events all while paying homage to the Japanese-Americans who were interned during WWII. There’s also the San Jose Greek Festival, which takes place during the summer with food and fun for the entire family. And don’t forget the annual Tet Festival, which celebrates the Vietnamese New Year with dancing, music, and more!

Close to Weekend Getaway Spots

High Sierra Trail in Sequoia National Park
Photo by Petr Meissner

While there’s plenty to do in San Jose itself, its proximity to other areas of California makes for excellent weekend trips! San Francisco, Napa, and Sacramento are just a few hours north. Yosemite National Park and Sequoia National Park are about three to four hours east. And, of course, you can always drive up and down Pacific Coast Highway for beautiful views of the ocean!

Quirky Attractions

Winchester Mystery House in San Jose, CA
Photo by HarshLight

Want to see and stand on the World’s Largest Monopoly Board (which is certified by the Guinness World Records)? How about a tour of the supposedly haunted Winchester Mystery House? Eager to join the nearly half a million visitors to check out the holiday decorations downtown during Christmas in the Park? No matter the time of year, there’s always something unique to do in San Jose!

An Appreciation for Film

Cinequest Film Festival in San Jose, CA
Photo by Travis Wise

San Jose has its very own film festival that’s been recognized all over the world for its innovative and unique premieres. Cinequest takes place each March and showcases over 200 films from filmmakers and artists in 50 countries. Get out of the way, Sundance!

Taco Festivals

Fish tacos
Photo by Sarah and Jason

San Jose is lauded for its innovative technology companies, but did you know the city is known for its innovative tacos as well? The Taco Festival of Innovation is an annual event built around a love of great music and food. Each spring, curator Movable Fest gathers 30 of the best taco trucks from the area, and a panel of judges selects the best taco! With live music, Mexican wrestling, and all the tacos you can eat, this festival isn’t to be missed.

Hop-ping Beer Scene

Beer glass from top down
Photo by Evan Blaser

Downtown San Jose is home to several fantastic breweries. Hermitage Brewing was one of the first craft breweries in the city and has an impressive selection of IPAs, stouts, and sours. Santa Clara Brewing Company has a comfortable, sleek taproom offering a variety of seasonal and year-round brews. Strike Brewing was started by two athletes who wanted to pay homage to the sport of baseball, and they’re known for their excellent Double IPA. Whether you’re a seasoned drinker or a craft beer newbie, there’s something for everyone in San Jose.

Good for the Environment

Guerrero Plaza in San Jose, CA
Photo by brian kusler

If you want to live in an eco-friendly city, San Jose is just what you’re looking for! In 2007, the city instituted The Green Vision into their economic plan, which focused on specific goals to reduce environmental impact. Goals included converting landfill waste into energy, reusing wastewater, and moving public vehicles to clean energy. There was also a city-wide ordinance signed into law in January 2012 that prohibits the use of plastic bags in supermarkets and retail stores, so make sure you have totes!

San Jose offers more than just perfect views. With its diverse culture, great people, delicious food, and an excellent economy, this California city is a fantastic place to call home. Get rid of your winter coats and start planning your move today!


Are you moving to San Jose soon? Extra Space Storage has several storage facilities in San Jose that can help with your transition.

All images are licensed under the Creative Commons.