When you walk down the street in Beverly Hills, you can smell the affluence in the air along with the organic cuisine and seemingly undeserved arrogance.
How did this city develop its reputation and attract so many rich people?
We were all introduced to the extravagant lifestyle of people in Beverly Hills and its infamous 90210 zip code when Aaron Spelling and Darren Star created the teen melodrama Beverly Hills, 90210.
We will cover the top 10 reasons Beverly Hills cost so much compared to other parts of the country.
1. High Cost Of Living
California is the state with the highest cost of living, and Beverly Hills has one of the highest living costs in the state (outside of San Francisco).
The cost of living refers to how much it costs to pay for necessities such as housing and food.
With 100 being the average cost of living throughout the United States, Beverly Hills has a cost of living index of 546.2 (about 5.5 times the natural average).
See the categorical costs of living indexes of Beverly Hills (with 100 being the national average):
- Groceries: 119.6
- Healthcare: 89.4
- Housing: 1517.8
- Utilities: 85.2
- Transportation: 156.7
As you can see, the majority of the drastic juxtaposition comes from the high cost of housing in the area.
In fact, the median price of a home in Beverly Hills is a whopping $3,788,000, while the average American residence costs $291,700.
Of the population in Beverly Hills, 99.6% live in a house with a couple of people renting during a residential transition.
With that being said, the market isn’t especially hot right now, in part due to the limited number of people who can afford houses in the area.
It’s not common for people to get multiple offers on their house, so they need to seriously consider the offers they get.
Right now, most houses in Beverly Hills sell for 2% under the asking price and stay on the market for a little over two months.
2. Los Angeles
One of the reasons that people may want to move to the area involves the wonderful amenities and attractions in nearby Los Angeles.
In fact, Beverly Hills is only about 20 minutes from L.A.
Being in Beverly Hills puts you close to many fun and exciting things to do.
Los Angeles is the second-largest city in the United States.
This makes it a popular place for numerous attractions, such as museums and event venues.
Of course, the city comes with a plethora of other benefits, too.
As a large city, Los Angeles has immense cultural diversity.
You will find people from all different backgrounds and beliefs.
This makes it more comfortable for minorities who will have a better chance of finding friends and a community here as opposed to smaller cities in the Midwest such as Minneapolis.
Latin, Asian, Jewish, and Muslim cultures all enjoy substantial representation in the area.
Movie, Music, And Art Scene
Naturally, Los Angeles has a booming art scene with movie studios and music venues.
People need to write and direct the movies made in the area.
People also need to play in the area to make a name for themselves.
Many people who aspire to work in movies and music move to L.A. to get their big break thanks to the higher number of opportunities compared to most other areas.
The art scene in L.A. is thriving, too.
You can see it in a casual way as you walk down the boardwalk and see the caricature artists and street performers.
There are also expensive, classy art galleries with numerous prominent members of the art scene centralized in the area.
Los Angeles boasts one of the greatest food scenes in the country with an eclectic range of restaurants.
Being so close to the ocean, you will get the opportunity to taste fresh seafood at numerous locations.
Since California is so close to Mexico, you can expect to find a number of the best tacos available.
Not to mention the Asian influence and vegetarian/vegan options.
Not only can you enjoy eating, but you can also enjoy the opportunities in the area as a personal chef or celebrity chef.
Numerous famous people, such as Bethenny Frankel, started out as personal chefs to the stars in the area.
You’ll never be at a loss if you need to find a good place to eat, and many places stay open late.
Try some of the best restaurants in Los Angeles to find your favorites!
Naturally, the recent pandemic had a negative impact on the job market in Beverly Hills and Los Angeles, but we are making a turn for the better.
While the hospitality industry is still struggling, there is still no better place for entertainment careers.
There’s also a booming tech scene.
However, the fastest growing industries at the moment appear to be healthcare and education.
The options are endless as long as you look for them.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a freeway that connects directly to Beverly Hills.
While city planners did have a plan to create a highway that connects two large interstate highways, the statewide project could not access federal funds.
Unfortunately, the state couldn’t accommodate the $300 million price tag that the project would cost, and it was scrapped.
With no major highway, drivers must share smaller residential roads that tend to come with a lower speed limit and one other inconvenience that can add to transportation costs.
Naturally, the more time we spend in traffic, the less time we have to spend with family and at work.
There are also quite a few red-light cameras in the area.
While that keeps the area safe, it also makes it easy to get a ticket.
The city of Beverly Hills spends extra money on white street signs that are easier to read, especially in the sun.
To eliminate traffic, Beverly Hills offers a free trolley from the Civic Center to Rodeo Drive on the weekends and additional times in the summer and winter.
Not only does this reduce the number of people on the road, but it also allows people to have one more glass of champagne when they go shopping and still get home safely.
4. Shopping And Beauty
People in Beverly Hills love to wear designer apparel to help showcase their wealth to the other people around them.
For this reason, they must have luxurious stores to accommodate the high demand.
Rodeo Drive has some of the greatest luxury shopping in the entire country, and it’s located right at the center of the action for easy access.
The famous outdoor shopping center covers three blocks and boasts more than 100 luxury brands.
Here are just some of the shops you will find:
- Dolce & Gabbana
- Alexander McQueen
- Tom Ford
- Jimmy Choo
Rodeo Drive is home to the most expensive store in the world: The House of Bijan.
Many tee shirts cost $450 or more, and you need an appointment just to shop there.
Check out the full Rodeo Drive store directory here!
Also, while in the area, check out the 24-hour “cupcake ATM” at Sprinkles Cupcake Bakery just two blocks away!
You deserve it for all the walking you do while shopping!
You can’t go out shopping without looking your best, especially in Beverly Hills.
To ensure that they look their best, many residents will regularly get plastic surgery and non-invasive cosmetic procedures to keep up with their appearance.
They also make a point to stop at one of the numerous salons in the area.
However, Beverly Hills salons take pampering to the next level with outdoor options and the newest services available.
5. Media Representation
Media representation has made it known to the rest of the country (and the world) that people in Beverly Hills have a lot of money.
We will cover two of the most popular portrayals of the area, The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and Beverly Hills, 90210.
However, you can also find portrayals in numerous other movies and television shows.
Real Housewives Of Beverly Hills (RHBH)
This Bravo show follows housewives and divorcées who live in the famous town.
The women show off their luxurious lifestyles as well as the effort it took to get them where they are today.
They become friends and build alliances (and enemies) throughout the series until the epic reunion at the end of every season.
While usually lighthearted, many of the cast members open up very vulnerable aspects of their lives, including divorce, child custody, legal problems, suicide, and addiction.
Some of the famous ladies in the show include:
- Lisa Vanderpump
- Kyle Richards
- Kim Richards
- Denise Richards
- Kathy Hilton (mom of Paris and Nicky Hilton)
- Teddi Mellencamp
- Lisa Rinna
- Brandi Glanville
Beverly Hills, 90210
Beverly Hills, 90210 became a sensation in the 1990s thanks to the highly dramatic storylines and the attractive cast.
The show tells the story of two teenagers who move to the affluent neighborhood from Minnesota and the popular friends they meet at Beverly Hills High School.
The drama only intensifies as the cast continues to grow up and face adult problems.
While somewhat campy at times, this show helped pave the way for dramas after it, including multiple spin-offs and reboots.
All parents want to live in an area with a great school district known to foster growth and tap into each child’s potential.
Beverly Hills Public High School ranked 267 out of almost 100,000 public high schools in the country, which is quite impressive.
It also received the highest honor available to any public high school, the Blue Ribbon School Award of Excellence.
However, for parents who want to instill a religious component in their children, there are numerous private schools, including Good Shepherd School and Harkham Hillel Hebrew Academy.
While there may not be a four-year university in Beverly Hills, there are numerous institutions in the surrounding area, allowing children to go to school near home.
Some popular universities in the area include:
- Santa Monica College (average cost = $4,325)
- The University of California, Los Angeles (average cost = $14,000)
- Platt College (average cost = $24,000)
- University of Southern California (average cost = $30,000)
7. Sunny Weather And Nearby Beaches
Southern California and Central California consistently pop up as the areas in the country with the best weather.
It’s easy to see why!
All year long, Beverly Hills, California, has an average high of 78 degrees.
July and August are the hottest months with an average high in each month of 88 and 89 degrees, respectively.
The record high hit 109 degrees, but it’s rare for the temperature to get that high.
You probably won’t see any snow since the winters are typically pretty mild, with the average low rarely getting below 40 degrees.
However, the winter months bring a little more rain.
On average, the city sees 27.5 rainy days a year.
This warm weather makes it easy to enjoy the beaches in the area, thanks to its proximity to the Pacific Ocean.
Some of the beaches people in the area visit include Palisades Beach, Marina Beach, and Santa Monica State Beach.
Even if you don’t go to the beach, you get to tan and wear light, breezy clothes most days.
You can somewhat supplement the high cost of living because you won’t need to buy winter jackets.
With all the money in the area, residents are especially concerned with safety.
Luckily, the revered Beverly Hills police department responds in an average of one minute.
Plus, one of the main police stations is decorated with white roses.
Violent crime is relatively low in Beverly Hills.
Only .03 out of 1,000 people experience murder, and 1.3 out of 1,000 people experience assault.
In comparison, the national average murder rate is .05 out of 1,000 people, and the national average assault rate is 2.5 out of 1,000 people.
That doesn’t mean that crime doesn’t happen.
Criminals target the area due to the amount of loot they may be able to score.
That’s why the rate of property crime in Beverly Hills is quite high.
Beverly Hills has a theft rate of 35.51 out of 1,000 people compared to the national average of 15.50 out of 1,000 people.
To ensure safety, it’s wise to have an advanced security system.
It’s also best not to leave your car doors unlocked or walk around with a wallet full of cash.
In high-risk situations, consider hiring security to watch your home or go out with you.
When the recent pandemic happened, businesses and the government needed to take special (and expensive) precautions to get things back up and running, especially considering California had some of the strictest Covid-19 laws in the country.
However, that keeps the area sanitary and safe for everybody.
9. Beauty And Cleanliness
Beverly Hills is a beautiful area.
Palm trees decorate the edges of the streets on the rolling hills.
The buildings look shiny and new.
Furthermore, you can get images of the beach and the skyline of Los Angeles if you know the best places to get a great panoramic view.
In many cases, the mansions in the area provide amazing views, contributing to the high price tag.
To add to the incredible beauty, the Beverly Hills government takes steps to ensure the air is clean and no one’s beautiful picture will have trash in the background by promoting recycling and placing plenty of public trash cans.
They also encourage residents to drive electric cars or hybrid cars, such as Teslas.
Beverly Hills also has numerous parks for residents to enjoy.
These parks bring clean oxygen to the location and encourage a little exercise and outdoor activity.
When you live in Beverly Hills, you will notice the luxury all around you.
The luxury becomes clear any time you take a look at the houses in the area or look at the fancy cars.
The people in the cars are wearing sunglasses and talking on the latest iPhones.
This adds to the aesthetic appeal (and value) of the area since everything is so luxurious.
10. Dreams Of LaLa Land And Fame
Many people move to the Los Angeles area with dreams of becoming famous and getting their own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
People who live in Beverly Hills tend to assume that they are famous already.
That’s why some of the top talent agencies in the country are headquartered there.
Some of the famous people who went to Beverly Hills High School include:
- Carrie Fisher
- Nicholas Cage
- Lenny Kravitz
- Betty White
- Tori Spelling
- Pauly Shore
Of course, most people move to Beverly Hills after they become famous (like the parents of most of the above-mentioned stars).
Some stars who moved to the area later in life include:
- Jennifer Lawrence
- Harry Styles
- Demi Moore
- Lucille Ball
- Floyd Mayweather
- Mia Farrow
For people who dream of being rich and famous, making it in Beverly Hills is the ultimate symbol of success.
When you hear the name Beverly Hills, you most likely think of opulence and luxury.
While many of us don’t see the value of living in a place with such a high cost of living, some people are attracted to the magic that seems to permeate the famous zip code’s borders.
If you don’t have enough money to live in Beverly Hills, maybe a visit will help you soak up some of that prosperity and high-class lifestyle.