Home to more than 4 million people, Los Angeles is considered one of the greatest cities in the United States.
It is one of the places where people from different nations move to so that they can fulfill their dreams.
The city offers plenty of culture, creativity, and opportunity for those would want to advance in their careers.
Let’s take a look at the pro’s and con’s of living in Los Angeles, California.
25 Pro’s and Con’s of living in Los Angeles
25 Pros of Living in Los Angeles
1. Plenty Of Outdoor Activities To Enjoy
There is a unique combination of beaches and trails.
Therefore, you enjoy camping, hiking, bicycling, running, fishing, sailing, surfing, and swimming.
You can also utilize the museum days where residents can visit for free Monday-Friday after 3PM.
2. Numerous Professional Sports
There are plenty of professional sports teams to follow.
Los Angeles has 2 professional basketball teams in the Lakers and Clippers.
Are you a football fan?
You can enjoy 2 professional NFL teams in the Rams and Chargers.
In case you prefer to watch hockey, follow the Kings.
You can enjoy baseball with the Dodgers team, or you can take a short trip to Anaheim to cheer the Angels.
3. It Has A Booming Economy
Thousands of activities attract people from across the world to LA.
Fortunately, this city employs more than 400,000 people in the hospitality and tourism industries.
This city also leads in other sectors such as the fashion industry.
It has been listed in the top 10 cities nationally in terms of job growth.
According to a recent report, Los Angeles is expected to add 48,400 payroll jobs in 2020.
4. Pleasant Climate
In case you grew up during the 1980s, the smog stories in the city can make you have doubts about living in this city.
However, you will unearth that for the past four decades, the issue of smog has dramatically improved because the weather tends to be pleasant throughout the year.
In most cases, the average winter reaches approximately 60F.
If you are used to cold months of January with lots of snow, these will be welcome conditions for you.
During summer, the weather stays at 90F or below, which is tolerable for those who manage to reach the beach areas where it becomes cooler.
Not only that, the weather tends to be far from humid.
Even with hot days, you will find it manageable.
5. Extensive Public Transportation
Although LA is globally known for its nightmarish commutes and freeway gridlock, it has an advanced public transport system.
In reality, it is home to one of the best public transportation networks that encompass shuttles, businesses, light railways, and subways at every corner.
Most importantly, these vast transport networks continue to grow daily with new railway lines added periodically.
The city is ranked 10th in the US for its public transit system.
More so, it is ranked 18th among the most walkable cities, according to a report published.
6. Competitive Environment
Los Angeles is one of the most professionally competitive cities in the US.
It has numerous people attempting to succeed in life, regardless of whether they are working on a minimum wage or earning hefty salaries.
If you thrive in a highly competitive environment, you will love to live and work here.
7. Cultural Diversity
LA is among the few cities in the US that have limited ethnicity or racial prejudices.
Although the Latino/Hispanic populations represent approximately 48 percent and the Caucasians 28 percent of the city, the variety of perspectives, cultures, and personalities provides it with a strength that you cannot find in other cities around the nation.
8. Food Diversity
With the diverse culture, comes a diverse selection of food as well.
Because LA is located by the Pacific Ocean, you can expect to find fresh seafood as well.
Even if you are looking for an upscale dining experience or dining on a budget, you will get everything here.
The restaurants have almost every food type and venue you can imagine starting from 5-star restaurants to street vendors.
LA is home to numerous world and nationally-recognized chefs who provide their services daily.
9. World-Class Shopping Centers
Do you love to shop?
Los Angeles may be the perfect place to find all of your favorite shops and brands.
You will get about 100 blocks of retail and whole businesses owned and operated independently in the downtown district.
There are also plenty of campuses, designer showrooms, boutique stores that will enable you to find your preferred designer brands quickly.
10. Job Opportunities
Los Angeles has plenty of job opportunities in it’s growing sectors.
Other industries such as entertainment and production have several vacancies that can help you explore any business you want.
Also, the city has adequate infrastructure to support freelancers in the gig economy, independent entrepreneurs, and startups.
Even if you are beginning your career, you can join the hospitality industry that pays well.
11. Going Green
While many people believe that the city is plagued with numerous emissions and smog, the city has made multiple environmental protection measures.
It has approximately 528 Energy Star buildings and has been ranked first in the US for five consecutive years.
Another report released in 2020 ranked it as the one number city in terms of solar power consumption.
Most of the new construction homes include adding solar power systems into their design.
Further, the city recognizes the advantages of proper waste management and has designed and implemented numerous environmental programs.
Such programs have helped it attain an overall recycling rate of approximately 77 percent.
12. Excellent Medical Facilities
LA has some of the best hospitals in the US that you can visit if you want strong healthcare.
It also has some of the top-ranked pediatric research facilities.
These medical centers have more than 16 various specialties such as cancer testing, neurology, and cardiology.
13. Pets Are Welcome
In case you wish to live in LA with your pets, you have a chance of receiving the best treatment.
It has pet-friendly city environments with lots of hotels, pet parks, boarding facilities, daycare, and welcoming restaurants.
Some dog friendly parks in Los Angeles include the Silver Lake Reservior, Lake Hollywood Park, and Elysian Park.
14. Easy Access To The International Airport
The Los Angeles International Airport, the main airport in LA, is approximately 10 miles from the downtown area.
To access the airport, you can use public transport system or your car.
It is ranked third among the busiest airports in the US.
The airport receives flights to and from most areas in the nation and globally.
Also, the airport has undertaken a multi-billion-dollar investment in improving its service, operations, and convenience.
That investment includes a $1.9 billion Tom Bradley international terminal with 60 new luxury retails and dining shops.
15. Educational Facilities
LA is the home to thousands of students who attend more than 30 colleges.
Two of the institutions of higher education are among the top 10 globally.
These universities include UCLA, named 10th in 2019, and Caltech ranked as the best research university.
It is not only the universities and colleges that you can find here.
This city also ranks number one in the US when it comes to public charter school enrollment.
Currently, this city has 328 charter schools that provide high-quality education completely free of charge.
16. Housing Perks
Housing units provide more space and access to excellent facilities, including a common swimming pool and private parking.
You will find access to public facilities such as a pet area, barbecues, and picnic areas.
17. Friendly Atmosphere
You should not allow people to discourage you when they associate the LA residents with craziness and obnoxiousness.
Although it might be true to some extent, you will get several amazing and friendly people living here.
It would be best if you were not afraid to explore numerous events in this state with other people because most of them are friendly.
Also, the residents embrace active lifestyles and live healthier because of the abundant availability of resources.
Most of the residents are health-conscious since they eat well and exercise regularly.
Also, the Angelinos are known for their artsy and stylish behavior.
Therefore, if you would like to live a more active but stylish lifestyle, this is the best city for you.
Although LA is the global entertainment center, it does not mean that it only has the latest movies and actors.
It has a considerable share in the music industry.
This is because it is the home to the Wiltern, The Greek theater, Hollywood Bowl, Rhino Records, and Capitol Records.
It is also the origin of iconic brands, including Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Sublime, Snoop Dogg, The Doors, and Beach Boys.
Further, the city continues to grow as the epicenter for the music industry in general, rap, and rock music.
Not only that, it hosts several music festivals every year when more than 200,000 people attend.
The city is the home to famous world shows, including MTV Video Music, The Voice, and American Idol.
19. Flexible Working Environment
If you like wearing casual attire, Los Angeles has many jobs that can accommodate your needs.
Most organizations in this area have adopted this attire due to its sunny and warm weather.
Therefore, depending on where you work, you can find flip-flops and shorts allowed to be worn at the workplace.
Also, most employers do not compel their employees to work the normal 9 am to 5 pm schedule.
Consequently, you might find yourself having more freedom to work outside the office or to wander around.
20. Great Place To Start A Business
Apart from having a sandy beach and great weather, entrepreneurs can establish companies that make a considerable amount of money.
Los Angeles is known as being one of the best places for a startup tech company.
Therefore, if you have a solid business plan, you could thrive here.
21. You Can Find Affordable Options
If you are smart about food purchases, you will find that they are relatively affordable.
If you stick to the fresh product at a grocery store, you can avoid costly food chains, restaurants, and cafes.
Also, internet services are relatively cheaper compared to other large cities such as New York.
Therefore, you can find it easy to access most of the online services that you like.
22. Great For Car Lovers
Los Angeles is a great place if you are a car enthusiast and love to find and meet like minded people.
You can regularly find car shows and events happening here.
Don’t forget to see these 10 must see car attractions in Los Angeles.
23. Real Estate Variety
Experts claim that real estate has continued to grow and experienced considerable sales in this state.
For instance, in 2014, it experiences an approximate increase of 18.5 compared to other areas.
The best thing about this city is that you can get a home that can suit your budget and needs.
For instance, if you are looking for a one-bedroom house or a 10,000 square ft estate, you can find it.
24. Great Place To Raise A Family
People will tell you that Los Angeles is only good when you are single, but impossible if you have children.
Although certain life aspects might become more expensive and challenging with little children, it is a wonderful place for families.
There are parks, beaches, aquariums, zoos, museums, and exceptionally children-friendly malls.
It also has other adventures such as hiking, sailing, and skilling.
25. Excellent Nightlife Entertainment
LA provides limitless nightlife entertainment because it has approximately 8,300 restaurants, 400 nightclubs and bars, and dozens of music venues.
You can check out the original music venues such as Viper Room, the Wiltern, the Roxy, and Troubadour.
There are also several comedy clubs that you can visit to laugh and remove your worries.
Not only that, you can attend one of the TV shows such as, Who Wants To Be A Millionaire, The Price is Right, The Voice, and American Idol.
25 Cons of Living in Los Angeles
1. Traffic Congestion
A study found that Los Angeles ranked as the 37th most congested city in the world.
The average commuter in LA can expect to spend at least 45 hours per year in traffic.
New York ranks as the most congested with drivers spending at least 100 hours in congestion.
2. Threat of Earthquakes
Most of the densely populated areas of this state are directly located over the San Andreas Fault.
Therefore, it means that residents of such regions live with the reality of experiencing major earthquakes.
Even if major earthquakes never happen, the area experiences minor earthquakes.
According to this study, there is a 75% probability of one or more magnitude 7.0 earthquakes hitting Southern California since 2014.
3. High Cost Of Real Estate
Housing costs are one of the biggest factors of Los Angeles being so expensive to live in.
The median purchase price for a home is $650,000, which is out of reach for many.
Because of this, almost 75% of residents are renting.
4. Far Apart Neighborhoods
In reality, there are more than four million people who live with a radius of 500 square miles.
The city of Los Angeles is composed of a series of widely dispersed settlements loosely connected to downtown.
Therefore, it implies that neighbors are spread further compared to other metro areas.
When selecting your neighborhoods, it will be like staying close to your friends and family.
If you have friends a couple of miles away, there is a likelihood that you will not meet them often.
As a result, you might find it challenging to socialize.
5. Parking Nightmare
If you plan to drive your car, you will face the unpleasant reality of high parking fees.
A 2018 study found that Los Angeles has 101 square miles of parking space, which is greater than the size of 4 Manhattans.
And if you count the various types of parking (non-residential buildings, residential, lots, and garages) 14% of L.A’s county land is committed to parking.
This equates to be about 3.3 parking spaces for each of the 5.6 million vehicles in the city.
6. Child Care Is Costly
The average cost for preschoolers is approximately $10,300, and infant care is $14,300.
Therefore, it implies that you will incur high charges in caring for your children if you are a working parent.
Also, the cost of living is high.
Therefore, you can find it challenging to get a home with an affordable nearby daycare.
7. Extensive Wait Times On Medical Care
Although people consider this city as the epicenter of medical facilities, it still faces a shortage of medical staff and doctors.
In most cases, you will have to wait for an extended period to receive medical help.
You will also pay a considerable amount of money for the services you will receive.
Therefore, it will become challenging for you to have private doctors because you will spend more.
8. You Can Experience Burnout
People in this state work for longer hours, run side hustles, and take second jobs to pay huge bills.
According to a poll of over 3,000 residents, Los Angeles was rated as the most stressful city in the United States.
Therefore, you might end up spending more time working to pay your bills and fail to enjoy your social life.
9. Drug Problem
Skid Row is known as the center of the addition crisis in Los Angeles.
It is a 50-square block in LA that has the densest population of homeless in the nation.
It was recently estimated that more than 12,000 herion and meth addicts are in Skid Row each year.
A recent article in the New York post says it has the highest amount overdoses in the country.
10. Terrible Smog
This state has a low basin structure surrounded by mountains that makes smog form and stay over the city.
By adding emissions from industrial sites and millions of cars, you will get hazardous air pollution levels.
Although the state has continued to lay strategies to reduce smog, it will be challenging to clear it up soon.
11. High Crime Rate
The city has above-average crime rates compared to other cities in the US.
According to LAPD statistics, homicides in Los Angeles were up 38 percent in 2020.
The 349 homicides in 2020 were the highest rate in over a decade.
12. High Cost Of Moving
When you move to a new city, you should know that associated costs can be challenging.
When you relocate, you will need to hire a professional mover who most likely will be costly.
13. Job Market Competition
There is a booming market for employment in this state compared to other parts of the US.
However, it can be tricky to get the right opportunity if you do not know where you can begin.
Most industries such as entertainment, tourism, automotive, electronics, and steel which employ thousands of people, are highly competitive.
14. Crowded Streets
You will notice the crowded streets when you driving around the city.
Pedestrians are always looking to get across the street and this can be distracting to drivers.
You will also see food vendors along the walkways.
Be aware of people that walk out in front of you when you least expect it.
15. Food Costs
Buying food is relatively costly compared to the national average.
For instance, 16oz of cheese ($5.8), a dozen eggs ($3.45), a loaf of bread ($3.33), and one gallon of milk ($3.80).
It means that even if you are careful with your spending, you will use approximately $500 every month.
Apart from prices, other services such as gym subscriptions, water bottles, and yoga classes are exaggerated.
Therefore, it can be challenging for an average person to make their ends meet in this state.
16. Big Crowds
When it comes to the most overcrowded cities in the US, LA is ranked second after New York.
All the job opportunities, outdoor activities, and great weather is attracting more people to move to the city.
Therefore, if you do not like to constantly be out in public around large crowds of people, you might want to reconsider this area.
The west coast of LA has an extensive issue of homelessness.
Due to rising rental prices and high cost of living, you may see many people living in the streets.
In 2020, statistics indicated that LA had more than 66,000 homeless people.
While homelessness is common in other states, much of the crime problems are attributed to the rising number of homeless.
18. Spending Temptations
When living in LA, you will encounter numerous temptations to spend your money.
Whether this is dining at a great restaurant or shopping in the fashion mall, you will be tempted.
If you struggle to keep a budget, living here might not be a good idea.
19. Aggressive Drivers
A 2018 California Highway Patrol study found that two-thirds of fatal-crashes in Southern California were the result of road rage.
You may experience cars following too closely, unsafe lane changing, not giving the right-of-way, or not obeying traffic lights.
20. High Taxes
Death and taxes are two things that you can always be sure of.
By July 2020, 14 cities in LA had a combined sales tax rate of more than 10 percent.
This tax was the highest in the US.
The only issue with sales tax is that it mainly affects low-income earners.
However, raising the sales tax makes it more lucrative to the local government because it raises more income.
If you live here, you will have to bear the higher gas, traffic fines, and motor vehicle taxes.
21. Broken Dreams
Many people move to LA looking to better their lives through movie making, singing, and acting skills.
However, most will end up never making their dreams a reality.
Just like other big cities with specialty industries, it can be challenging for upcoming artists to thrive.
If you are an artist, it will take hard work and good luck to succeed in Hollywood.
In reality, your journey to success can be depressing and lonely.
22. Extreme heat
Although summers are pretty mild, the area has continued to experience days with more than 100 degrees in the last decade.
Scientists attribute the increased hot days to global warming.
Therefore, by living in this state, you might suffer from hot summers.
23. High Cost Utilities
In February of 2021, it is reported that the average household in Los Angeles is paying 21.9 cents per kWh.
This equates to 59.9 percent more than the nationwide average.
In Febuary of 2019, Los Angeles’ electricity costs were 44 percent higher in comparison to the rest of the country.
24. Strange Laws
California is known as a state with strange and stricter laws compared to other states.
Here are few strange laws in Los Angeles to be aware of:
If you have a balloon flying above 5 feet of the ground, it is against the law.
If you use someone else’s bath water, you are breaking the law.
If you throw a frisbee after a lifeguard asks you to stop, you are breaking the law.
25.Threat Of Severe Flooding
LA is a semi-desert area with vast basins, ravines, canyons, and mountains.
Such an environment results in issues when major high winds, thunderstorms, and other bad weather issues.
It means that flooding can happen quickly in the valleys and mountain passes.
Mudslides are also common in hillside areas with limited vegetation.