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What Are They So Happy About Over There in Mountain View?

A financial web site ranked Mountain View as the No. 1 "happiest city" in California. Hey! What about us? We're happy, too, right?

A new study published this week by a financial website ranks Mountain View the top place to live in the state for happiness. 

CreditDonkey.com says they looked at four main things to determine the best places to live and work:  
  • The freedom to get another job if the current one is horrible
  • A decent wage
  • Not having to get up when it’s still dark 
  • A reasonable, non-stressful commute
The study used U.S. Census data to determine unemployment rates and examined per capita annual household income when compiling the list.

"We figured that a low unemployment rate means it’s relatively easy to find another job," the findings state.  

It seems that Californians are most happy in one of two regions:  The Bay Area and close to the beach in SoCal.   Six of the top ten cities are located in the Bay, three are in Orange County and one is on the coast, north of Los Angeles. 

As for Mountain View, here's what the study says: 

"With good incomes, good jobs prospects, good working hours, and reasonable commutes, Mountain View takes first place for happiest workers. Google, which is headquartered in the area, may have a lot to do with this. The employer is famous for its culture and talent, but it’s not the only player. LinkedIn, Intuit, 23andMe, Mozilla, and plenty of other innovators are in the area too."

Here's the full list of the Top 10 Happiest Cities in California:
    1. Mountain View
    2. Santa Barbara
    3. Santa Clara
    4. Newport Beach
    5. Irvine
    6. Milpitas
    7. Sunnyvale
    8. Redwood City
    9. Lake Forest
    10. San Mateo 

    What do you think of the rankings?  Do you agree with the findings?  Tell us in the comments!
    Freda Salatino April 17, 2014 at 10:19 AM
    Remember, they're judging happiest places to live AND work. I'm a 27-year resident of Santa Cruz county, but except for a two-year stint at Borland in the 90s I've always commuted over the hill. To me it's always been worth it to come home. (I keep a low carbon footprint by either taking mass transit or riding my motorcycle.) I can't imagine ever living in the land of strip malls.
    CJ Butcher April 17, 2014 at 10:39 AM
    Well first off, not to get TOO technical, but LG has raised the issue before so I'm raising it for them now. LG is NOT a city...it is a TOWN. So therefore you cannot be on the list of any "Cities". Besides traffic always gets really bad in 17 south right in the middle of LG...how it could it possibly be that happy in an "overall sense"?
    Clint Mattacola April 17, 2014 at 01:01 PM
    Santa Cruz is a great town EXCEPT for ALL THE BUMS, DRUG ADDICTS and BIKE THIEVES. I would not vote for Santa Cruz as "the happiest town" until these issues are resolved.
    Freda Salatino April 17, 2014 at 01:17 PM
    In that case you probably also wouldn't vote for San Francisco, which has similar issues. Remember, we're not voting for anything here. CreditDonkey.com is merely assessing cities as "happy" based on the ability of their inhabitants to both live and work there, not the ability of their inhabitants to live undisturbed by panhandlers. (As for bike thieves: Stanford is rife with them. :->)
    Lisa April 17, 2014 at 10:33 PM
    I've lived in 3 of the listed "happiest" cities - and have never been happier than my 23+ years in Santa Cruz - though I do admit I have to work over the hill to survive my love for this town.

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