Are you planning on relocating to Irvine? Going through a relocation can be a very stressful experience, especially if you don’t know the area you’re moving to and you wait too long to get your new home’s utilities set up.
Failing to prepare is actually more common than you might think. Having moved across state lines several times in my life, I’m no exception to the rule. The first couple times I moved, I treated it like a high school term paper and put everything off until the last minute. Of course, then I had nobody to blame but myself when I spent the first week in my new home with no internet or utilities.
If you’re planning a move to sunny Irvine, CA in Orange County, use this guide so you can avoid making the same mistakes I did. That way, when when you get to your new home, everything will be all set!
Irvine Real Estate Market
Let’s start with a run-down of Irvine’s real estate market. Like most Orange County Real Estate, Irvine has a hot housing market. According to Redfin research data, the median single-family home price has appreciated from $950k in 2015 to $1.2mil in 2020.
Roughly 30 homes are sold per month on average. Depending on the time of year, homes typically remain on the market for an average of 2-3 months, but around 25% of the homes listed are sold within a 2-week period. 10-20% of the homes sold receive higher than asking price, while roughly the same percentage require one or more price drops to sell.
The stable, growing economy and population combined with highly-rated schools and low crime makes Irvine a very solid choice for purchasing a home, as property values will likely continue to climb over the years. This is good news if you’re relocating to Irvine for the long term.
Irvine City Information
Irvine is one of the first master-planned cities in Southern California, and is widely considered to be a gold standard for master-planned communities around the country. With its vast array of amenities, high level of walkability and high rankings across the board, it has a lot to offer its residents.
Irvine has a population of roughly 265,000 people. This makes it one of the largest cities in Orange County. It’s also one of the most diverse cities in Orange County. Consistently achieving high national rankings for schools, safety, health and entertainment makes Irvine a great choice for families, couples and singles alike.
There are many schools within the Irvine Unified School District. Below are some of the top school at each level.
For a full list of K-12 schools, please check out the IUSD website. Irvine is also home to the University of California, Irvine, one of California’s top universities. If you’re relocating to Irvine and have kids in high school, this is a great option for keeping them close to home while ensuring they get a great education.
In terms of age, Irvine residents are spread quite evenly—according to Niche.com, between 10% and 15% of the population make up each age group. Irvine adults are highly educated, with almost 70% having a Bachelor’s degree or higher level of education—which is roughly 2.5 times higher than the national average.
The median household income is just above $100k. This isn’t a huge surprise with the wide variety of high-paying jobs nearby and a highly educated population.
Recreation, Entertainment, Shopping and Dining
Irvine has a great nightlife and restaurant scene, along with tons of shopping options and recreational activities galore.
Large shopping centers and strip malls include The District, Irvine Spectrum Center and the Diamond Jamboree Shopping Center. Each of these are home to several restaurant and bar options. Adding to Irvine’s own offerings, the surrounding cities also have great options for shopping and eating.
In terms of recreation, the Orange County Great Park is a huge complex that includes sports facilities for baseball, basketball, tennis, soccer, and more. It’s also home to the official training facility for the Anaheim Mighty Ducks NHL team. Outside of the Great Park, each Irvine neighborhood also has its own parks and athletic fields.
Irvine has a robust senior citizen program, including 3 senior centers within the city limits.
- Lakeview Senior Center – 20 Lake Rd
- Rancho Senior Center – 3 Ethel Coplen Way
- Trabuco Center – 5701 Trabuco Rd
Additional senior resources, including programs, activities and transportation services can be found on Irvine’s Senior Services portal.
Irvine Utilities and Services Information
If possible, it’s best to schedule the utilities to turn on the day before you move in. This way, should there be any unexpected delays, you won’t end up spending your first night without electricity. I’ve included the phone and website for each major utility company below.
Irvine Ranch Water District
(949) 453-5300 | www.irwd.com
Southern California Edison
(800) 655-4555 | www.sce.com
Southern California Gas Company
(800) 427-2200 | www.socalgas.com
Waste Management of Orange County
(949) 642-1191 | www.wm.com
(866) 861-6075 | www.att.com
(855) 243-8892 | www.spectrum.com
(833) 942-0134 | fiber.google.com
Below are a few other pieces of information that are relevant for anyone moving to Irvine, CA.
Driver’s License Information
Anyone moving from out of state who wants to drive will need to apply for a California Driver’s License within 10 days of relocating. You’ll also need to register for new plates within 20 days. You’ll need to schedule an appointment with a local DMV branch to accomplish both of these tasks.
Pet Licensing Information
Irvine has a strict pet licensing policy for dogs. Owners must license all dogs older than 4 months with the city and vaccinate them for rabies. For more information, please visit the Irvine Animal Care Center website.
Hopefully this guide provides you with all of the information and contacts you need to get all set up in your new home! If you’re looking for help with planning your move from start to finish, be sure to check out this great relocation checklist from local moving company Pro Movers OC.