Is Sacramento a Good Place to Retire? 

Sacramento, the heart of California's vast Central Valley, attracts retirees for its urban sophistication and laid-back rural charm. Known for its rich history, vibrant arts scene, and diverse cuisine, its close location to iconic destinations like the Bay Area, Napa Valley, and Lake Tahoe adds to its appeal. If you’re interested in spending your next chapter in a 55+ community in Sacramento, we're here to guide you through everything you should know.

What You Will Learn

Estimated Reading Time: 8 minutes

What Are the Benefits of Retiring in Sacramento?

From its vibrant cultural scene to abundant outdoor activities, Sacramento offers unique opportunities for a fulfilling and enjoyable lifestyle. Here's a closer look at the pros of retiring in Sacramento:

Excellent Climate for Outdoor Fun Year-Round

Sacramento has a Mediterranean climate, so it has damp, mild winters and hot, dry summers. Sacramento's mild climate offers the perfect backdrop for an active lifestyle throughout the year. Whether you're looking to spend an afternoon on the golf greens, join a pickleball match, paddle down the American River, or go for a bike ride along the numerous trails, there's always an activity to keep you moving.

Sacramento's “City of Trees” status adds to its appeal, providing beautiful scenic views to enhance outdoor experiences. The region is also rich in agriculture, filling local farmers markets with fresh Central Valley produce, appealing to those seeking a balanced and active retirement.

Nonstop Cultural and Culinary Events

Sacramento's rich history as California's state capital and its role in the Gold Rush era are just the start. The city is alive with theaters, musical events, museums, and food festivals that celebrate its diverse heritage and culinary excellence. The city also has a full calendar of festivals and special events to enjoy, celebrating everything from its historical heritage to its modern-day zest for life: 

  • Sacramento Farm-to-Fork Festival: An annual celebration that brings together the community, farmers, and chefs to honor the region's status as a leader in fresh, sustainable food production. 

  • Gold Rush Days: A throwback to the 1850s, transforming the historic Old Sacramento Waterfront into a scene from the past with reenactments, gold panning, and stagecoach rides. 

  • California State Fair: A tradition since 1854, the State Fair is a summertime family staple with agricultural displays, carnival rides, concerts, and culinary exhibitions.

55+ communities often host exciting community events of their own, too! From social gatherings and educational workshops to fitness classes and hobby clubs, the communities offer residents an enriching and engaging lifestyle.

Proximity to Amazing Destinations

Living in Sacramento means you're never far from some of Northern California's most popular destinations. The San Francisco Bay Area beckons with its iconic landmarks and vibrant urban experiences, offering everything from world-class dining to renowned museums. Napa Valley, a short drive away, invites wine lovers to explore its esteemed wineries and picturesque vineyards. For adventure seekers, Lake Tahoe provides year-round activities, from pristine skiing conditions in the winter to hiking and beach days in the summer. Bodega Bay offers stunning coastal views, fresh seafood, and whale watching for those seeking a tranquil escape from the city.

A stone’s throw from home, Folsom Lake is an outdoor enthusiast's paradise. Its expansive waters and surrounding parkland cater to various interests, including boating, fishing, hiking, and picnicking, making it an ideal spot for a day trip or a serene sunset view.

Relatively Lower Cost of Living

Sacramento can offer a more affordable lifestyle than other major cities in California, thanks to its relatively low overall cost of living. This affordability extends to various aspects of daily life, including dining, entertainment, and transportation, making it possible for retirees to enjoy a fulfilling lifestyle within their financial means. Additionally, Proposition 19, passed in California in 2020, allows homeowners over 55 and disabled individuals to transfer their property tax base when moving homes and limits property tax reassessment exclusions for inherited properties. Learn more about Proposition 19 here.

Robust Healthcare Network

Sacramento stands out for its robust healthcare system, offering retirees access to high-quality medical services and facilities. The city is home to several top-rated hospitals and medical centers, including UC Davis Medical Center, nationally recognized for its research, specialty treatments, and comprehensive care services.

What Are Some Cons of Retiring in Sacramento? 

Retiring in Sacramento offers a unique blend of opportunities and lifestyle benefits, yet, like any city, it comes with its considerations. It's essential to weigh the pros and cons to fully appreciate what living in California's capital might entail for retirees.

Hot Summers 

Sacramento's inland location experiences hot summers, often reaching the high 80s to mid-90s (°F). The city's heat can be intense, especially for those unaccustomed to warmer climates. However, some may find the dry heat more manageable compared to the humid conditions found in other regions.

Despite the challenges of the summer heat, Sacramento's warmer climate allows diverse activities to avoid the peak heat, especially early in the morning or later in the evening. Moreover, the city's proximity to cooler destinations, such as the Pacific coast or the Sierra Nevada mountains, offers easy escapes for those looking for a respite from the summer heat.

Winters, on the other hand, usually stay in the cooler but comfortable range, with an average high of 62°F. The city receives moderate rainfall during the winter months, averaging about 18 inches annually, replenishing the natural landscape and providing a lush, green environment rare in the colder season.

Housing Prices 

While Sacramento's cost of living is slightly lower than other California locales, the housing market is feeling the pressure of rising demand. The influx of residents from more expensive areas has started to push up home prices. Despite this trend, Sacramento remains a more attainable option than its coastal counterparts like San Francisco or Los Angeles. It allows retirees to enjoy California living at a somewhat more accessible price point.


As Sacramento continues to grow, the city faces the typical challenges of urbanization, including increased urban sprawl and traffic congestion. These signs of a burgeoning city reflect its economic vitality and appeal but can pose inconveniences for residents seeking a quieter lifestyle. Traffic can be a concern, particularly during peak hours, encouraging residents to explore alternative transportation methods or enjoy the benefits of living in communities designed with walkability in mind. While some may view these challenges as drawbacks, others might see them as minor trade-offs for the benefits of living in a dynamic and evolving city.

Best Places to Retire in Sacramento 

Roseville epitomizes suburban serenity with its attainable living options, many activities, and proximity to urban amenities and natural escapes like Lake Folsom. It's an ideal spot for retirees who enjoy leisure and adventure. Golf courses, walking trails, and community events add to Roseville’s allure, crafting an environment where every day can be as active or leisurely as you choose.

Foothill Communities

Trilogy®  Bickford 

The foothill communities of Bickford, Gold Hill, and Penryn offer the tranquility of the countryside while keeping city amenities within reach. These areas provide a peaceful retreat surrounded by the natural splendor of rolling hills and oak woodlands, embodying a secluded and connected lifestyle. Trilogy® Bickford showcases the best of both worlds with its modern homes in the heart of nature, providing retirees with a serene backdrop to their active lifestyle. Whether hiking in the Sierra Nevada, exploring local vineyards, or simply enjoying the panoramic views, these communities offer tranquility and accessibility.  

Gold River

Gold River’s mix of urban and suburban settings, coupled with many retirees, parks, and community activities, makes it a compelling choice for those seeking a balanced retirement lifestyle. This area is a favorite among retirees for its well-established neighborhoods, extensive walking and biking paths, and a strong sense of community. The availability of quality healthcare, shopping, and dining within the area enhances the living experience, making Gold River an attractive option for those looking for a comprehensive and balanced retirement lifestyle. 


Known for its historic charm and proximity to outdoor adventures, Auburn is a jewel for retirees. This town is ideal for those who appreciate the outdoors, offering easy access to hiking, biking, and fishing, with the American River nearby and the Sierra Nevada as a stunning backdrop. The town's historic downtown area, unique shops, art galleries, and restaurants add to its appeal, offering cultural experiences and community engagement.

Why Choose Trilogy by Shea Homes for Your Next Chapter 

Experience the unique benefits of Trilogy® Resort and Boutique Communities in Sacramento and the East Bay.
From the Shea family's historic role in building iconic structures like the Hoover Dam and Golden Gate Bridge to our meticulous attention to detail in every aspect of home construction, Shea Homes' legacy of quality is deeply rooted in our rich history and commitment to Northern California's communities.

With a legacy of excellence in quality and customer satisfaction, Trilogy has been named America’s Most Trusted® Active Adult Resort Builder for twelve years straight by Lifestory Research. This honor highlights our commitment to creating spaces that elevate living, offering more than just homes but communities where you can thrive.

Experience the difference with Trilogy by Shea Homes and discover why our communities are the perfect choice for your next chapter in Sacramento. Explore all California 55+ communities by Shea Homes and start envisioning your dream retirement today. Learn more about what makes our communities the perfect choice for your next chapter in Sacramento. 

Explore all California 55+ communities by Shea Homes

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