Elk Grove

Profile and demographics:

A modest but vibrant city in northern California, Elk Grove is only 15 miles to the south of the state’s capital Sacramento, and about an hour’s drive to the Bay Area. It officially incorporated on July 1, 2000.

As of 2014, approximately 151,000 people live in Elk Grove making it the second­largest city in Sacramento County. The city encompasses 42.19 square miles, and serves as a bedroom community for many Sacramento commuters. Elk Grove enjoys a nice mix of suburban residences, retail and shopping space, and farm and ranch land. The area saw a considerable jump in population and development during the real estate boom, climbing 85.96% in population since 2000. Gary Davis is the current the mayor of Elk Grove and he is up for reelection in 2016.


Like much of the region in the Central Valley, Elk Grove was largely farming community, but when the Gold Rush started to gain momentum, Elk Grove became a stagecoach station for travelers because it was conveniently situated between the state capital and the the San Francisco Bay. Elk Grove further expanded when the Pacific Railroad ran track and built a station there in 1968.

The 1980s saw more suburban residential projects and retail spaces emerge, appealing through its abundance of property and laid back, family­friendly atmosphere.

Real estate and housing:

The median home value in Elk Grove is currently $356,933. The average home in the area has seen a 7.4% value appreciation over the last year, with a steady 5.8% in home prices anticipated over the next year. There are approximately 50,634 housing units in the city. Like many small cities that experience a spurt during the real estate bubble, Elk Grove saw property values plummet and foreclosures serge during the recent mortgage crisis and recession. In 2009, homeownership rates were 73.1% in Elk Grove, dropping to 55.3% as of 2013. However in more recent years, the market in Elk Grove has come back strong, vaulting from $263,400 in 2009 to current levels. Homes sales are now flourishing in Elk Grove because the community offers so many desirable qualities: good schools, strong leadership and public services, great parks and recreation, and a reasonable commute to Sacramento or the Bay Area.

Economy and employment:

Elk Grove has a well­rounded economic climate due to the wide variety of companies and national businesses choosing to operate in the city. There are 12,520 firms doing business in the city, with top employers:

1Elk Grove Unified School District (5,000 employees)

2 Apple Computers (1,800 employees)

3 Kaiser Permanente (1,468 employees)

4 Methodist Hospital of Sacramento (550 employees)

5 Alldata (400 employees)

The per capita income in Elk Grove is $29,527 and the average household income $61,094. The unemployment rate is only 5.7%, which is significantly lower than both the U.S. and greater Sacramento averages. Job growth was 1.32% in Elk Grove over the last year. The cost of living in Elk Grove exceeds the U.S. average by 30.5%, but remains within median California standards.

Old Elk Grove

The historic district of eastern Elk Grove remains center piece of the city, where preserved buildings date back to the 1800s when agriculture and the Gold Rush started to more actively shape the area. The open­air Old Town plaza offers residents and visitors a charming promenade with a wide variety of shopping, restaurants and vintage scenery.


Elk Grove boasts an impressive school system that consistently ranks highly in state assessments. Elizabeth Pinkerton Middle School, Elliott Ranch Elementary School, Pleasant Grove High School, and Katherine L. Albiani Middle School are recognized as top performers. The Elk Grove Unified School District is the fifth largest educational district in California, serving more than 66,000 students this year. 81.2% of the population over 25 years old are high school graduates or higher, and 30.7% have earned their Bachelor’s degree or higher.

Elk Grove is home to several institutions of higher learning, including community college Cosumnes River College, private religious college Quest Seminary, and California Northstate University’s Doctor of Pharmacy degree program.

Notable residents:

Jim Cooper, former Captain in the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department, first mayor of Elk Grove, and now Californian state assemblymen
Scott Boras Baseball sports agent. Named "Most Powerful Sports Agent" in 2013 by Forbes Magazine

Ami Bera, United States Representative, 7th district, California
James Iha, Composer, songwriter, musician, and music producer
Buck Martinez, former baseball player, manager, and sports commentator Kyle Larson, NASCAR driver.

Lance Briggs Linebacker for the Chicago Bears
Bill Cartwright Former player and coach for the Chicago Bulls
ArikArmstead Linebacker for the San Francisco 49ers

Elk Grove trivia:

Elk Grove was the fastest growing city in the entire United States between July 1, 2004, and July 1, 2005, the height of the real estate boom.

Elk Grove calls the city of Concepción de Ataco, El Salvador its official sister city.

Real estate sales in Elk Grove hit their zenith in the winter of 2005­, when median home prices reached $467,000.

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