The Bay Area is so beautiful, I hesitate to preach about heaven while I'm here.
The Best Thing About Hayward
The Bay on a "Budget"
This isn’t to say that Hayward is going to be cheap, mind you, but compared to the Bay Area behemoths around it, Hayward is survivable. Rent in Hayward is one of the most affordable within an hour drive of Downtown San Francisco. Commuting from Hayward is pretty simple on account of its proximity to BART (Bay Area Railway Transit) which gets you to downtown Oakland or San Francisco without switching lines.
A local's note about costs in Hayward:
I live in the Hayward Hills and we bought here because of the CCAs, low HOAs, and planned communities make it very scenic. Someone compared it to Woodlands, CA on the peninsula. Also, my husband was reared here.
There has been a major rejuvenation recently with the new federal administration. Lots of demo and building along Mission Blvd which used to be a sea of unsightly used car lots or vacant buildings. Could it be that the City of Hayward Building Division is finally releasing its grip of red tape?
The Worst Thing About Hayward
Not the Bay You’re Thinking Of
Those who are used to cities with a lot of excitement in-town are going to need to familiarize themselves with BART for more than just commuting if you choose to live in Hayward. There isn’t much to do here for young professionals. Things don’t get all that much better for families, with not much to do with the kids after school either. Speaking of schools, public schools in Hayward are hit or miss and many families elect to send their children to private schools in the area.
Here's a local with a mixed review about Hayward: Not going to lie there’s not much to do IN Hayward, but downtown sometimes throws street festivals during summer that can be entertaining. Other than that you’re pretty much in the middle of the bay area so there’s so much to do outside of Hayward.
Lifestyle of Hayward
Residents say that living in Hayward is like living in a dense suburb. It’s more sprawling than the urban meccas around it, but without the nightlife options. Hayward does have decent dining options that locals love and support. Unlike other areas with the term “suburb” attached to them, Hayward is incredibly diverse and residents claim it is extremely welcoming to people from all races/ethnicities/geographies. The city has made pushes to build out a vibrant Downtown Hayward, but locals will tell you that significant strides are needed to address a run down infrastructure and prevalent homeless population (very common for California cities).
To see what locals get up to in Hayward check out the calendar of events:
Why You Should Move Here Now?
California On A Budget
If you’re looking to move to the Bay Area and don’t want to cough up thousands per month on rent, or multi-millions on buying a home, Hayward should be on your shortlist. In fact, it may realistically be the only option you’ll get to consider if you’re managing a limited budget.