california to arizona


In recent years, many in California have picked up their lives and relocated to Arizona. In fact, almost a quarter of Arizona’s new residents are from California. While this trend was accelerated by the pandemic, this phenomenon is not new. On average, 52,251 Californians have moved to Arizona each year between the years of 2006-2018. And, In 2019, alone, a whopping 60,000 Californians relocated to Arizona. However, not nearly as many Arizonians are doing the reverse move. In trying to understand the impetus of this migration, we’ve compiled a list underlining the benefits of this move, So, if you are considering moving from California to Arizona here is what you should know: 

moving from california to arizona
Arizona is full of gorgeous sunsets, unique cacti and desert landscapes.


Ditching the Golden State for the Grand Canyon State? Here’s what you should know:


One of the primary reasons for the move from California to Arizona is for the affordability. Moving from California to Arizona can help you maximize your lifestyle within the same budget. 

It’s no secret that real estate prices in California have become untenable. For example, the median home price in San Diego, CA is $833,500, while the median home price in Phoenix is $413,000, less than half the price. 

Moreover, the general cost of living is 30%-40% higher in California than Arizona, depending on where you live. This includes housing, transportation (gas costs), utilities, groceries, restaurant prices, healthcare costs and more.


Arizona offers many tax breaks, which can be a huge plus if you are moving from California. In fact, the income tax rate in Arizona is two times less than in California (4.5% v 9%). Moreover, the sales tax rate in Arizona is about 33% lower than in California. 

There are also other tax benefits involved in moving to Arizona that can help you maximize your income. For example, in addition to lower housing costs, Arizona also has a 15% lower property tax rate. This means you can get a median property tax break of $2300 just with this move.


Arizona is a car-centric state with limited public transportation options. Thus, you will most likely need a driver’s license and a car to get around. However, the amount of time you will spend in the car, and in traffic, will be significantly reduced. The average commute time in Arizona is 25.7 minutes, statewide. Meanwhile, the average commute time in California is 29.3 minutes. However, this largely depends on what city in California you are coming from.


Arizona is full of cities, towns and suburbs that offer a good quality lifestyle. From Flagstaff to Tucson to Sedona to Scottsdale, to Prescott, to Tempe, to Mesa, there is a city in AZ for all kinds of lifestyles. Whether you prefer a more urban environment, rural locale or something in between, you’ll be able to settle down in a place that works for you. Furthermore, the state of Arizona has a prosperous economy, offering plenty of job opportunities, top-notch healthcare, education options and more.


In terms of nightlife, entertainment and restaurants, Arizona has it all! Arizona has an excellent dining scene full of fine dining, food trucks and everything in between. Moreover, there are plenty of music venues and art destinations perfect for gallery hopping and appreciating the arts. There are even several Frank Lloyd Wright architectural marvels throughout the state, as well as a few artist enclaves, specifically in Sedona, Bisbee, Tubac and Flagstaff. 

The arts scene in Arizona is highly developed and pays homage to the state’s western heritage and robust Native American communities.


People assume that Arizona is just one huge desert full of cactus plants and dried shrubs, however, there are different climates and landscapes throughout the state. In fact, over 15% of Arizona is composed of forests. Arizona has 6 national forests including Prescott, Tucson Mountain Park and Coronado National Forest. There are even several ski resorts in the state. A few notable resorts are Mt Lemmon, Sunrise and the Arizona Snowbowl. 

Several of Arizona’s forests are located up in the mountains between Phoenix and Flagstaff. In addition to deserts and forests, there are lakes and other kinds of natural wonders in AZ (waterfalls, canyons, rivers and more). 


In a similar vein, it’s no secret that Arizona is full of natural wonders. Arizona is famously home to the Grand Canyon. However, there are so many other national parks in the state that are worth visiting. Be sure to check out Monument Valley, Wupatki, the Petrified Forest, Antelope Canyon and Lake Powell. There are many famous and one-of-a-kind camping sites, walking trails and boating destinations throughout the state!


Though some may argue that the weather in California is superior, the weather in Arizona is not half bad! Though the summers can be scorching hot, the winters are fairly mild with average low around 40 degrees fahrenheit. It’s no wonder that Arizona is a state that snowbirds flock to!


Arizona is home to several top performing public school districts. The top public school districts in the state include the Chandler, Catalina Foothills and Scottsdale Unified School District. There are also some top universities in the state including ASU (Arizona State University) and the University of Arizona.


This can be a huge draw for those Californians who are used to going to the beach. While there are no beaches in Arizona, there are aspects of life in AZ that can appeal to anyone who wants to live in a place that feels like a 24/7 vacation. Most Arizonians lounge by the pool or head to a golf resort to unwind during the summers. 


Daylight savings can be a drag! In fact, there are even scientific studies that show how that loss of sleep can lead to increased health risks. Though some people don’t find DST to be that troublesome, there are medical studies that prove how DST can actually cause strokes, and heart attacks. 

With the exception of Navajo Nation, Arizona has not observed Daylight Savings Time since 1968.


If you are considering moving from California to Arizona, be sure to reach out to us at USA Preferred Movers. We are an expert Arizona moving company that can help you relocate. Contact our Arizona Movers for a free quote