San Carlos, California

Good Living!

Farmer's Market
Farmer's Market
Burton Park
Burton Park
Doppio Zero, Downtown San Carlos
Doppio Zero, Downtown San Carlos



Sunny Days: 264
71100 Affordability
95100 Schools
50100 Diversity
84100 Safety

The Best Thing About San Carlos?

Laurel Street

Laurel Street is the wonderful but also relatively mellow commercial street in San Carlos. It smacks of small-town USA with its boutique shopping, restaurants and coffee shops. You can find cities in the surrounding area with bigger and fancier downtowns (see Palo Alto and Menlo Park) but few as calm and fun as this. One note: the outdoor seating and restaurant scene blew up a bit in the recent times, bringing a more jumping vibe to the area. Some locals are pushing to shutdown the outdoor shenanigans in favor of a return to a quieter, slower pace.

The Worst Thing About San Carlos?

It’s on the verge

It’s hard for these more chill towns near Palo Alto and Menlo Park not to become them as fancier folk move in and buy out some of the historically blue collar population. When your media home price is north of $2m it can’t entirely maintain its character and San Carlos feels on the verge of losing that balance of socio-economic diversity that made it a more reasonable place to raise your kiddos.

Lifestyle of San Carlos

San Carlos is for sure a family town. Most of the housing is single-family although there are some condos/townhomes and apartments near downtown and up on Crestview for those looking for something smaller (albeit not inexpensive). Much of the community gathers on Laurel Street (downtown) and Burton Park for a pretty active social calendar that includes an annual parade, weekend markets, a wide variety of fairs including an Art and Wine Faire, outdoor family camp-outs, summer concert series, and movies nights under the starts. There is also a ton of volunteering opportunities offered through the City Council Volunteer group. It’s a close-knit town that also has a ton of youth sports and community activities for the kiddos. If you want your beans to be busy this town will serve you well.

Schools in San Carlos

Public schools in San Carlos rank among the highest in the country with an A on Schools in San Carlos place within the top 5% in the state of California and White Oaks Elementary School, ranks #5 out of 7,163 in California, and Central Middle School ranks #100 out of 6,510 in the state. High Schoolers travel to nearby Carlmont High School in Belmont or Sequoia High School in Redwood City to complete their secondary education, both of which are part of the Sequoia Union High School District that ranks A+ on [](
) so you can’t go wrong for schools in San Carlos.

Why You Should Move Here Now?

The Vibe

Bay Area living with a taste of Mainstreet USA. You’re in the heart of the tech world but San Carlos hasn’t completely flipped yet to the fancy-town vibe of some of the more illustrious neighbors. If you’re hankering for a bit less tech-crypto-algorithm soirees and a bit more Mainstreet USA then take a look at San Carlos.

Neighborhoods in San Carlos

View All

Alder Manor


Alder Manor is in the southwest corner of the city and is topographically a mix of nice hilly landscapes, with canyon and Bay views (Crestview street offers the best views in the city) and flat blocks perfect for family bike riding. Most of the housing is singe-family (as with all of San Carlos) and those are a mix of older ranch and cottages, and newer Tudors and some apartments up on Crestview. Most appealing about this neighborhood is the presence of Eaton Park Trailhead and Park and being on the edge of the Pulgas Ridge Reserve. This makes it one of the best spots in the city for families craving an outdoor lifestyle for their kiddos and themselves. Average home prices in Alder Manor come in just under $2.5m and given the quality of the schools and pleasantness of the city they tend to go fast.

Beverly Terrace


Beverly Terrace sits on top of the hills in the Northwest section of the city. It’s known for having spectacular views of the Bay and being on the edge of the beautiful nature preserves to the west and the north. The neighborhood also has some of the best sports facilities in the city via Highlands Park, which offers tennis courts, soccer fields, baseball fields, huge playgrounds, and tons of open green space at parks throughout the blocks. The streets in Beverly Terrace wind throughout the tree-lined hills and in spite of this being the largest neighborhood in San Carlos, offer a peace and quiet other more dense areas cannot replicate. The lots are bigger and the homes a bit smaller here with average home prices in the $2.1m range. This is also one of the neighborhoods the newbies are moving in an building the mega-homes on the large lots so you get quite a mix of classic cabins/ranches and some super-new mansion-style homes. Children in the neighborhood are zoned for Heather Elementary, Mariposa Upper Elementary, and Tierra Linda Middle School - all excellent and highly rated schools.

Clearfield Park


Clearfield Park is a classic “in-town” community. It’s right near down downtown so locals appreciate the short walks to downtown. A fair number of the homes are newer and more modern than the classic suburban neighborhoods of San Carlos. Younger families and couples often buy into the smaller homes and close proximity to nightlife that Clearfield Park offers. They also find the average home price of $1.4m extremely inviting relative to other neighborhoods and cities. The neighborhood is also right on Caltrain, Highway 101 and a really short drive to SFO airport so if you’re commuting locally or traveling frequently its a great spot. Children are zoned for Arundel or Brittan Acres Elementary, both excellent schools so parents should feel confident moving here. You do get some noise here due to the proximity to downtown and the general commercial areas but again, if you’re looking for a walk to the bars and restaurants of the city then take a look.



Cordes is the historic district and neighborhood of San Carlos. Some of the homes were built in the 1800’s and many of the “newer” homes are from the 1930’s. If you want to live in the neighborhood that feels most like the way the city was when it all began then this is the place. There is a mix of luxury and more modest homes so prices range quite a bit with the median just below $2m but some well below and some of the newer more modern mega-homes in the hills quite a bit more. Locals consider the price tag worth it due to the quality of the schools, historical vibe and three excellent parks within walking distance of many locals.

Cordes has another plus by being one of the neighborhoods that is suburban in vibe for some blocks but also a short walk to the restaurants, bars and the Caltrain station for commuters. Many of the locals like that feeling of being both suburban and “urban” in the same neighborhood. Kiddos are zoned for Arundel and Mariposa Elementary and Tierra Linda Middle School.

El Sereno


El Sereno is one of the most coveted neighborhoods in San Carlos. It has two areas: Oak Park and White Oaks and both are on flat blocks within walking distance of the downtown district of the city. The homes and lots are smaller here so while the median home price is ~$2m (not the most expensive in San Carlos) the average price per sq foot is much higher than others. The homes are immaculate cottages, bungalows and craftsman and the streets are lined with tall older trees that shade and cool the neighborhood during the summer months.
In addition to being walkable to the restaurant/bar scene you’re also walking distance from Burton and Edgewood Parks so the hardcore sports facilities of Burton are basically in your backyard and the hiking trails of Edgewood are close by.

Howard Park


Many consider Howard Park to be the preeminent neighborhood of San Carlos. Laurel Street, the center for social and community activities runs right through Howard Park so for families, couples and singles, looking for an active social life and strong community spirit this is your neighborhood. In spite of the proximity of the commercial district many of the blocks are beautiful with the classic San Carlos tree-lined streets.
Burton Park, the oldest and most community-centric park in the city is here: so expect walks to movie nights and music festivals as part of your lifestyle if you end up in Howard Park. Many of the homes are beautiful classic craftsman, bungalows and cottages, all perfect for smaller families and couples looking to live a mainstreet USA downtown lifestyle. Average home price in Howard Park is $1.9m and given the smaller home size it makes the avg price per sq ft., quite expensive. Children here go to Brittan Acres, Arroyo Elementary, and Central Middle School. All at the top of the rankings for their district.