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Learn About Cerritos, CA

Here is a review of Cerritos from someone who lived and worked there for a while:” “I lived in Cerritos for two years while on a work assignment, and the experience was unforgettable. The city is filled with so many fun things to see and do. I miss the diverse restaurant availability. Every day I got to choose from a variety of cuisines. The Cerritos Millennium Library Museum was a personal favorite of mine. I would make excuses to go just to enjoy the themes and designs they cleverly designed into the structure. I would often take my niece as the children’s section includes a magnificent saltwater aquarium that includes sharks. I lived in an upscale, quiet neighborhood with very low crime rate, but certain areas are prone to increased crime rates as compared to other areas in California, so, if considering moving there, you should ask your real estate agent if the area you are looking into is safe. I miss the Los Cerritos Shopping Center. Every Sunday a group of my coworker and I would go browse the sales and enjoy a good time together. We would have lunch at the Lazy Dog Cafe, because we all loved the energy it generated and with its animated staff and plasma TV’s featuring various sports. Cerritos, California is a fun and exciting place to live. During the two years I lived there, I enjoyed the many attractions it had to offer, and I look forward to the day that I get to visit again.”

Cerritos, a Gateway City, is located in Los Angeles County, California and has a population of about 50,000 people. It was formerly known as Dairy Valley because of the large number of dairy farms that were located there. It is a quiet city with lots to offer. It has a livability index of 72 which makes it one of the better places in California.

The area where the city is located was once home to the Tongva Indians who lived there for thousands of years. Tongva can be translated loosely to “People of the Earth” which tells you that these Indians were one of the first to inhabit this area. Spanish explorers, when they arrived in the 15th century would later name them Gabrielenos. One of their missions was to civilize the Indians but unfortunately they brought with them diseases from Europe that decimated large portions of the Indian population. They established a small town called El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles de Porciúncula which is modern-day Los Angeles. King Carlos the Third granted a large tract of land to a soldier, Jose Manuel Nieto, on which he created Rancho Nietos. Today, Cerritos, Long Beach, Lakewood, Downey, Norwalk, Santa Fe Springs, part of Whittier, Huntington Beach, Buena Park, and Garden Grove all sit where this ranch was once located.

The rancho was eventually divided into 5 smaller ranchos and eventually, dairy Valley emerged – rapid train transportation and changing technology allowed many farmers to set up dairy farms. Wikipedia explains how modern day Cerritos came into being: “As land values and property taxes in California rose in the early 1960s, agriculture became increasingly unprofitable, and development pressures increased. In a special election held on July 16, 1963, residents voted to permit large-scale residential development. As a reflection of its newly planned suburban orientation, the City’s name formally changed to “Cerritos” on January 10, 1967, after the nearby Spanish land grant Rancho Los Cerritos, which figured prominently in the region and after Cerritos College in neighboring Norwalk.”

The population of Cerritos is 23% white, 7% African American, 62% Asian and the rest is a mix of other races including Latinos and pacific Islanders. The cost of living is 24% higher than the state average while the median household income is 49% higher. The crime rate in Cerritos is 30% higher than the state average. This should not discourage you though – the crimes in Cerritos are usually in one small area, Cerritos City College which borders Norwalk. You are otherwise very safe living in this city so long as you avoid buying a home in this area. The high school graduation rate is 15% higher than the California average and the city is served by the ABC Unified School District. One of the high schools in the city, Whitney High School was voted the best school in California and the 27th best nationwide by the US News & report in 2012. The city has 2 colleges – Cerritos City College and Fremont College. The city has one other distinction – 85% of all high school graduates go on to join higher education institutions.

Homes in Cerritos are expensive – the median home value is 61% higher than the average across the state. A 3 bedroom, 2 bathroom home will cost you around $700,000 while a small 4 bedroom, 3 bathroom home will cost you around $750,000. That said, there are deals to be found if you work with the right real estate agent.

There are many employers in the city of Cerritos. They include the ABC Unified School District, United Parcel Service, AT&T Mobility, Southern Wine & Spirits of Southern California, the City of Cerritos, College Hospital, S&J Chevrolet, Nordstrom, Delta Dental of California and Norm Reeves Honda Superstore. Many films have been shot here including Almost There and Imminent Contact.

The city has won several awards in the Tournament of the Roses Parade:

• 2003: “Learning Can Be Magical” – Judges’ Special Trophy for Showmanship and Dramatic Impact.

• 2004: “Rhapsody in Blue” – Craftsman Trophy.

• 2005: “Families Make a Community” Tournament Special Trophy for exceptional merit in multiple categories.

• 2006: “Magical Music Machine” – Animation Trophy.

• 2007: “Nature Rocks” – Bob Hope Humor Award.

• 2008: “Festival of Lanterns: Illuminating the Way” – Lathrop K. Leishman Trophy for being the most beautiful float entered by a non-commercial sponsor.

• 2009: “Camelot: A Knight’s Tale” – Grand Marshal Award.

In a nutshell, Cerritos is a great place to live so if you get a chance to relocate there you should take it.