Central Coast, CA 55+ Active Adult Retirement Communities

5 Active Adult Communities in Central Coast

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Mid $400s–Low $1Ms

1,350 Homes

No Age Restriction

Single Family, Attached

New and Resale Homes


Nipomo, CA

Low $400s–High $900s

554 Homes

No Age Restriction

Single Family, Condos

Resale Homes Only

Low $400s–Mid $800s

435 Homes

No Age Restriction

Single Family

New and Resale Homes

Cypress Ridge

Arroyo Grande, CA

Low $600s–Low $1Ms

375 Homes

No Age Restriction

Single Family

Resale Homes Only

Indian Hill

Avila Beach, CA

Low $400s–Mid $600s

163 Homes

55+ Age Restriction


Resale Homes Only

Central California


Stretching for approximately 350 miles between Los Angeles and San Francisco, California's Central Coast is a paradise for active adult retirees. Exciting recreational attractions offer a wide range of activities, while ocean views and blue skies provide plenty of scenic beauty. Several active adult communities dot the coastal and rugged landscape for those who can afford to live in this somewhat pricey destination.

Active adult communities in California's Central Coast are contained in four distinct regions: The Channel Islands, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo and Monterey Bay. Each area has its own attractions, which include beautiful beaches as well as rolling hills and majestic mountain views. The Central Coast also has a growing reputation for its thriving vineyards, making it a dream location for oenophiles.

Climate & Geography

The Central Coast is a series of ridges that stretches from just north of Los Angeles to Monterrey Bay.  Bordering the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Central Valley to the east. This mountainous ridge is called the Coast Ranges and is up to 50 miles wide and as high as 9,000 feet, creating perfect recreational options for the region’s active adults.

Unlike Southern California’s consistently warm and dry climate, active adult communities in the Central Coast enjoy a more Mediterranean climate with a rainy season that runs from November through April, raining on average 50-60 days a year. Snowfall is very infrequent except at high elevations. Like the rest of California, active adults in the Central Coast enjoy a pleasurable, mild temperature throughout the year with very little fluctuation. The temperatures in the Central Coast average in the upper 60’s during the summer and the mid-50’s during the winter. The cooling effect from the ocean means that active adults in the Central Coast enjoy a milder climate than those who live in the valleys to the west.

Recreation, Culture & Entertainment

The southernmost region of the Central Coast is the Channel Islands Region that includes the coastal cities of Oxnard and Ventura. The area is also a rich agricultural region which features small farms and vineyards. Historic districts promote the local arts scene and outdoor enthusiasts will love exploring Los Padres National Forest. Further up the coast is Santa Barbara with its charming, pedestrian-friendly downtown area. This luxurious area is known for its extravagant homes and exciting Spanish influence. Art lovers will not want to miss a visit to the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, and everyone can appreciate the beauty of the Santa Maria Wine Country and history buffs will love exploring the Santa Barbara Mission.

About halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco, the San Luis Obispo Region offers everything from outdoor recreations to historic sites and tours. Active adults and retirees who choose to relocate to the Central Coast area will love the San Luis Obispo area, home to the famous Hearst Castle, the classic Pismo Beach surf town and breathtaking coastal bluffs. At the most northern end of California's Central Coast, the Monterey Bay Region lies just south of San Francisco. This well-known area includes some of California's most popular attractions including impressive redwood forests, the cliffs of Big Sur and the artistic atmosphere of Carmel. Monterey Bay also includes Cannery Row and the world-class Monterey Bay Aquarium.

Cost of Living & Taxes

The Central Coast in California, much like the rest of the state, has a reputation as being one of the most expensive places to live in the country.  Santa Barbara is about 20 percent more expensive than the rest of California and about 55 percent more expensive than the rest of the country, with home prices being nearly three times as much as the rest of the country.  The San Luis Obsipo offers a little more relief for active adults looking into the Central Coast region, being half as expensive as the Santa Barbara area. Monterey County provides the best deal for 55+ communities in the Central Coast, with an average cost of living that is just 2 percent higher than the national average.

California has a high tax rate, with a 7.5 percent sales tax and a 13.3 percent individual income tax, some of the highest rates in the country.  California residents do have some relief in having untaxed Social Security benefits and some tax relief programs for low-income residents. Active adults and retirees who choose to call Central Coast home can qualify for a $7,000 reduction in the taxable value of their property.


55+ communities in the Central Coast have access to a wide array of hospitals such as the Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. Active adults in the Central Coast also enjoy proximity to French Medical Center in San Luis Opisbo, ranked in the top ten in the country for joint replacement. Monterey County residents also have four major hospitals in Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula, George L. Mee Memorial Hospital, Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System, and the Navidad Medical Center.

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