Best Pasadena Neighborhoods: Insider Tips for New Buyers

Published on July 3, 2017

– 6 min read

Thanks to its charming architecture, ideal location and picturesque mountain backdrop, many new home buyers are targeting Pasadena.

We asked local experts to give us the inside scoop on Pasadena neighborhoods—including tips about historic homes and advice on the best areas of Pasadena for finding affordable options.

Panel of Pasadena Experts
Paul Little, Pasadena Chamber of Commerce and Civic Association
Jura Slattery, Garfield Heights Neighborhood Association

Best Pasadena Neighborhoods for Historic Homes

“Pasadena has a wealth of older Craftsman style homes in relatively intact neighborhoods. In addition, Pasadena has several landmark districts where the exterior appearance of homes must be maintained. Some of California’s (and America’s) preeminent architects worked in Pasadena, including Greene and Greene, Sylvanus Marston, Paul Williams, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Myron Hunt. Pasadena is very strong on historic preservation.
I live in the Bungalow Heaven Landmark District in a 1913 Craftsman home. My neighborhood consists of more than 800 preserved Craftsman bungalows with a little park in the center. The Prospect neighborhood includes many stately Craftsman mansions, including the Gamble House (which is open to the public for tours) and Frank Lloyd Wright’s La Miniatura. The neighborhood overlooks the Rose Bowl stadium. There are mid-century modern homes in the Linda Vista neighborhood, Victorian houses, and bungalow courts near Orange Grove Avenue.” Paul Little
“Buyers should be aware that certain properties are part of an historic landmark district, and will require working with the City’s Historic Preservation Section to be compliant with exterior changes they may want to undertake. This is a simple process, and the City is very easy to work with in this regard. Garfield Heights is a landmark district because its residents care about preserving the unique historic character-defining features of these houses. Owners of contributing structures also have the opportunity to apply for a Mills Act contract with the City which benefits property owners with property tax reductions.” Jura Slattery

Most Affordable Pasadena Neighborhoods

“Housing prices are soaring all over Los Angeles County and Pasadena is no exception. There are more affordable homes to be found in some places, and condos in some areas are more moderately priced. Generally, areas north of the 210 Freeway and west of Lake Avenue are somewhat less expensive. People with limited budgets may want to consider a ‘fixer’ home that they can live in and restore.” Paul Little

“The Pasadena zip code of 91101 is more affordable especially for first-time home buyers with options to start with condos moving into single family residences as a possible goal for the future!” Jura Slattery

Pasadena Neighborhood Activities Loved by Locals

“I think people appreciate the size and scale of the city and all the activities one can find to do here. We have world-class museums, such as the Huntington Library Art Collections and Botanical Gardens, sporting events at the Rose Bowl, a lively restaurant and dining scene, shopping, performing arts from classical music and theater to jazz and rock shows.
In addition, Caltech and ArtCenter College of Design are here, along with the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, so the intellectual life of Pasadena is also stimulating. It is really a fun, engaging, safe, and exciting city to live in. We are also close to pretty much anything in Southern California.” Paul Little

Hidden Gem Pasadena Neighborhoods

“The housing market in our Garfield Heights neighborhood seems to be on the upswing. People are upgrading their properties, new owners are making improvements, and it seems those changes would make for better property values in the neighborhood.
The diversity of Garfield Heights is one of its most attractive attributes. Homeowners include a diversity of race, gender and age that make for a well-blended representation of our city. We are also a true community, who, because of the existence of our neighborhood association, offers many opportunities to get involved to make our community better.” Jura Slattery
More Pasadena Resources
Pasadena Neighborhood Map< Pasadena Chamber of Commerce
Browse Schools in Pasadena
Which Pasadena neighborhoods do you love? Send your tips to
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Steven Fung
Steven Fung is a licensed Loan Specialist at Clara with over 17 years of experience. When he doesn’t have his mortgage hat on, he enjoys repairing old cars and working on home improvement projects.
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