MOVING TO THE CONEJO VALLEY?
We know that moving isn’t all fun in games. Especially if it means picking up your life and moving to a brand new area. There’s so much to learn, so many questions to ask. That’s good, you have a few concerns – it’s only natural. We want to help ease the stress a little and keep you focused on the silver linings.
We figured we’d start with the more basic questions, there’s always time to dive in deeper. Plus, we have a ton more resources to give you a taste of Conejo Valley and California Real Estate.
The Conejo Valley is made up of 5 towns – Westlake Village, Oak Park, Agoura Hills, Thousand Oaks, and Newbury Park.
As you enter the planning stages for moving to the Conejo Valley, this quintuplet may sound intimidating. Fortunately, it’s not nearly as complicated as it looks, the Conejo Valley is broken down into two distinct sections:
These 3 towns are small, border one another, and share each other’s shopping centers and conveniences. We like to say, “when you live in one, you get all three”. You can literally wake up in Agoura Hills, hike in Oak Park and have a coffee in Westlake Village, all before noon. On occasion, you’ll head over to Thousand Oaks and Newbury Park to run to the mall or do some home improvement shopping, but probably not daily.
Geographically, this area is larger and further spread. The temperature is a little cooler and the housing options are more affordable. Day to day activities are generally spent on this side of the Conejo Valley, but Westlake Village isn’t a far drive for dinner and/or a movie.
The two areas share similar lifestyles with some minor variations. The major difference is affordability – the modern town centers, highly rated schools, and premium housing of Westlake Village, Agoura Hills, and Oak Park come with a heavier price tag. Thousand Oaks and Newbury Park are a little friendlier on the wallet.
CVG Tip: Check out our local weekly paper The Acorn online.
Weekends and summers are generally spent outside the home. Community pools are far from vacant, the hikes become more popular, and even matinees sell out on our hottest days. The hidden treasures of Conejo Valley really start to shine in the warmth of summer: the splash park, summer camps, and beach bus (this one’s really popular with the teens).
The nightlife adapts with your mood. Restaurants alone cover every base. From kid-friendly to romantically intimate, you can rely on an easy Saturday night out. There’s a handful of bars for the young and restless too. They don’t quite hit the mark as a true to form club, but they do have a 2 A.M. closing time and a dance floor. The wineries and breweries have a more casual setting for the times we just need a drink after work.
Getting out of town is more than easy. The 101 will get you anywhere in California and cuts right through the Conejo Valley. Go coastal for the day with a 45 minute drive in any direction – Ventura and Santa Barbara are north, Santa Monica is south, and Malibu is a straight shot west.
Want to make a weekend out of it? We sit just about halfway between San Diego and San Luis Obispo, Morro Bay is in driving distance, and Big Bear and Mammoth Mountain are spectacular inland destinations.
CVG Tip: Head over to our Conejo Valley Lifestyle page to get some ideas on things to do in the Conejo Valley.
To make your home search easier we created what we call, Neighborhood Tours. These tours break down the neighborhoods by name and price range. Within each page is a detailed overview of the neighborhoods including what makes it stand out, what’s to love about it, what’s not to love, the floor plans, neighborhood highlights, schools, demographics, the ideal (best fitting) buyer, a video tour, and any available homes for sale.
The goal is to help you narrow down your search as much as possible. Most of our neighborhood names are easily distinguishable and we cover over 100 throughout the Conejo Valley so jot down some notes for those that stand out. By the end of your research, you will have a pretty good sense of the area and the type of home you’d like. You can leave the rest of your questions up to me to answer.
CVG Tip: Start exploring the neighborhoods here. This will help give you an idea about the different community lifestyles before moving to the Conejo Valley.
There’s no true how-to for picking “the best school” in any area, let alone Conejo Valley. Fortunately we are known for our highly regarded schools and with a little local insight you will be able to narrow in on which schools match your wants, needs, and expectations.
There are 3 school districts in the Conejo Valley:
- Las Virgenes Unified School District (LVUSD) covers Agoura Hills, Calabasas, and the L.A. County section of Westlake Village. It has 8 elementary schools, 3 middle schools, and 2 high schools. LVUSD has a strong reputation and is often the preferred district for parents.
- Oak Park Unified School District (OPUSD) is a small school district with 3 elementary schools, 1 middle school, 1 high school and is Oak Park specific. It has the best reputation for academics. To the point that parents cater their home search around acceptance into this district.
- Conejo Valley Unified School District (CVUSD) is the largest and covers Thousand Oaks, Newbury Park, and the area of Westlake Village in Ventura County. It has 17 elementary schools, 5 middle schools, and 3 high schools. Most schools are very good to excellent, but with 17 elementary schools you can imagine that scores range depending on the neighborhood. Schools on the Westlake Village side are higher regarded and highly sought after. The Thousand Oaks side has excellent schools too, but not all. It’s worth doing your research.
*As you navigate through the Neighborhood Tours, each page will indicate which school district the neighborhood falls under, plus embedded links for each appropriate school.
High Schools Ranked
- Westlake – Considered the best overall high school. Strong academics, excellent sports programs, and diverse elective options.
- Oak Park – Best academic reputation. High graduation and college readiness rates. Sports and electives not quite up to Westlake High.
- Agoura Hills – Strong academics. Solid programs. Just a slight notch below the other two.
- Thousand Oaks – Same strengths as Agoura High but not as highly regarded.
- Newbury Park – Test scores a bit lower than the other 4. Solid school, just can’t quite catch up to the others.
Choosing a school district can be very overwhelming and confusing. I’ve lived here my entire life and it’s often confusing. Fortunately, there are tons of tool and resources, and I will share my personal experiences to help guide you. I’m a product of Las Virgenes schools and my kids have gone to school in both OPUSD and CVUSD.
CVG Tip: Greatschools.org is a good place to start your research. You may also schedule campus tours to get a sense of which school best suits your kids before moving to the Conejo Valley.
We’re within a valley that’s only about a 10 mile stretch from one end to the other, but the temperature gap doesn’t always feel so modest.
The further you make your way north the more the temperature tends to drop. We’re not talking 20 or 30 degrees, but on a hot day it’s noticeably warmest in Agoura Hills. Oak Park is often a few degrees cooler, Westlake Village saves even more, and as you make your way up to Thousand Oaks you’ll likely notice another 4 or 5 degree difference. Newbury Park usually clocks in the coolest for the area. On our hottest days, we’ve noticed a 10-15 degree temperature change between Agoura Hills and Newbury Park.
Overall, our climate is considered fairly mild. The average temperature hovers around 80. Yes, we’ll hit triple digits in a summer heat wave, but evenings usually cool down to a manageable temperature providing a comfortable night’s sleep with just a cracked window and a fan. Fortunately, humidity is almost nonexistent making even the heat wave’s peaks tolerable.
Winters are mild too. Sitting in the mid-60s on an average day. Rain is infrequent and something we welcome with excitement when it actually arrives. Like most areas, spring and fall are the most popular bringing green hills in the spring and colorful trees in the fall.
CVG Tip: On a particularly warm day, take a quick drive over the hill to Malibu and you’ll drop about 20 degrees.
We’re located about 30-40 miles north of the major cities like Downtown L.A., Santa Monica, and Century City. However the number of miles means little, it’s all about the traffic and what time you leave. A lot of our residents make the daily commute and usually schedule departure around avoiding the heaviest traffic. Expect to commute anywhere from 45 min-1.5 hours depending on the time of day.
If you’re lucky enough to both live and work in the Conejo Valley, traffic really isn’t an issue in our short corridor of the 101 freeway. You can usually make it across the valley in 20 min or less.
CVG Tip: Start looking at Google Maps to get a sense of your daily commute from our different towns when moving to the Conejo Valley.
What’s the next step?
I like to break it down into 3 stages:
- Phone Introduction – This part’s easy. We’ll cover the basics and schedule a face to face meeting.
- Face to Face Consultation – Let’s get to know each other. We’ll spend 30-45 minutes going over California’s home buying process and what to expect in the coming weeks.
- Area Tour – Now for the fun part. We’ll spend some time driving through the area scoping outConejo Valley neighborhoods and their different lifestyles. We’ll definitely check out a few houses plus you’ll finally have the chance to visit places like the Westlake Plaza and Stonehaus Winery that we’ve been raving about all this time.
REMEMBER WHEN WE SAID A TON MORE RESOURCES?
We have a ton (that’s right) more blogs and other info to help guide you through the buying process. If you’d like to learn more about buying in the Conejo Valley, head over to our buying pages where you’ll find tips, faqs, guides and more.