Santa Cruz County, about 70 miles south of San Francisco, is an ideal retirement destination for seniors seeking to live in a diverse, friendly area known for its scenic beaches and pleasant weather all year round. Residents can be immersed in the local culture by visiting the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History, and nature lovers also have access to the exhibits of the Seymour Marine Discovery Center and the Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History. Furthermore, seniors can surf and enjoy the sun at the famous Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk or go shopping in the seaside stores of Santa Cruz Wharf.

There are approximately 16 assisted living facilities within Santa Cruz, the county seat of Santa Cruz County, with an average cost of $6,800 per month, according to the Genworth Cost of Care Survey 2020. Although these costs are $1,800 more than the statewide average of $5,000, the community remains an enticing option for seniors due to its high quality of care and abundance of outdoor spaces.

Directory of Assisted Living Facilities in Santa Cruz County, CA

2015

Brookdale Scotts Valley

100 Lockwood Lane, Scotts Valley, CA, 95066

Brookdale Scotts Valley is an assisted living facility located in Scotts Valley, California just moments from Valley Garden Golf Course, Scotts Valley State Park, three major highways and several rest … (read more)
Brookdale Scotts Valley is an assisted living facility located in Scotts Valley, California just moments from Valley Garden Golf Course, Scotts Valley State Park, three major highways and several rest … (read more)

Wesley House III

123 La Selva Drive, La Selva Beach, CA, 95076

The staff at Wesley House II & III is high quality and skilled. I am going to give them a very good review. They are a very good place. They were open so I was able to go in and look around. I was … (read more)
The staff at Wesley House II & III is high quality and skilled. I am going to give them a very good review. They are a very good place. They were open so I was able to go in and look around. I was … (read more)

Paradise Villa

2177 17th Avenue, Santa Cruz, CA, 95062

Paradise Villa is an assisted living and memory care facility nestled in downtown Santa Cruz, California, near parks, shopping centers and Cabrillo Highway. The facility has a 58-resident capacity, an … (read more)
Paradise Villa is an assisted living and memory care facility nestled in downtown Santa Cruz, California, near parks, shopping centers and Cabrillo Highway. The facility has a 58-resident capacity, an … (read more)

The Maple House II

2000 Brommer Street, Santa Cruz, CA, 95062

I’m moving my dad to Maple House II. They have been great with helping me set things up, they were right on top of things, and actually listened to me. They can take care of my dad appropriately. Plus … (read more)
I’m moving my dad to Maple House II. They have been great with helping me set things up, they were right on top of things, and actually listened to me. They can take care of my dad appropriately. Plus … (read more)

Sunshine Villa

80 Front Street, Santa Cruz, CA, 95060

Sunshine Villa Senior Living is located in Santa Cruz, California, just moments from Depot Park, Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, Cowell Beach, Neary Lagoon Pier, restaurants, shopping centers … (read more)
Sunshine Villa Senior Living is located in Santa Cruz, California, just moments from Depot Park, Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary, Cowell Beach, Neary Lagoon Pier, restaurants, shopping centers … (read more)

Aegis of Aptos

125 Heather Terrace, Aptos, CA, 95003

Aegis of Aptos is in a residential neighborhood in Aptos, California, near restaurants, stores, a library and a church. Reviewers praise the facility’s well-tended campus which features ample spaces f … (read more)
Aegis of Aptos is in a residential neighborhood in Aptos, California, near restaurants, stores, a library and a church. Reviewers praise the facility’s well-tended campus which features ample spaces f … (read more)

Montecito Manor

311 Montecito Avenue, Watsonville, CA, 95076

Montecito Manor is an assisted living facility in the Santa Cruz suburb of Watsonville, California, near parks and churches. Visitors praise the facility’s wide hallways, wide doorways and well-decora … (read more)
Montecito Manor is an assisted living facility in the Santa Cruz suburb of Watsonville, California, near parks and churches. Visitors praise the facility’s wide hallways, wide doorways and well-decora … (read more)

Seaview Guest Home

7321 Mesa Drive, Aptos, CA, 95003

Seaview Guest Home, an assisted living community in Aptos, east of Santa Cruz, California, is centrally located near plenty of dining and entertainment along Soquel Drive and Aptos Creek. Family membe … (read more)
Seaview Guest Home, an assisted living community in Aptos, east of Santa Cruz, California, is centrally located near plenty of dining and entertainment along Soquel Drive and Aptos Creek. Family membe … (read more)

De Un Amor

460 Eureka Canyon Rd, Watsonville, CA, 95076

De Un Amor is nestled in the countryside of Watsonville, California. Visitors to the facility appreciate its quiet surroundings and the homelike environment they foster. The facility earns praise for … (read more)
De Un Amor is nestled in the countryside of Watsonville, California. Visitors to the facility appreciate its quiet surroundings and the homelike environment they foster. The facility earns praise for … (read more)

Twin Lakes Manor

777 Volz Lane, Santa Cruz, CA, 95062

My 92-year-old mom moved into Twin Lakes Manor in early 2020. With their consistent quality care, she has improved dramatically with increased appetite, improved cognitive ability, and expanded activ … (read more)
My 92-year-old mom moved into Twin Lakes Manor in early 2020. With their consistent quality care, she has improved dramatically with increased appetite, improved cognitive ability, and expanded activ … (read more)

Hanover Guest Home

813 Hanover St., Santa Cruz, CA, 95062

Hanover Guest Home, an assisted living community in Santa Cruz, California, has plenty of entertainment options in the area. Just down the street is a local library branch, and along Soquel Avenue are … (read more)
Hanover Guest Home, an assisted living community in Santa Cruz, California, has plenty of entertainment options in the area. Just down the street is a local library branch, and along Soquel Avenue are … (read more)

Flor’S Guest Home #1

1106 Darlene Drive, Santa Cruz, CA, 95062


Darwin House

707 Darwin, Santa Cruz, CA, 95062


Opal Cliff Residential Center

4795 Opal Cliff Dr., Santa Cruz, CA, 95062


Alexandria Victoria

226 Morrissey Boulevard, Santa Cruz, CA, 95062


Blue Hammock Care Home

99 Airport Blvd. Suite B, Freedom, CA, 95019


Chouteau Guest Home

1340 17th Ave , Santa Cruz, CA, 95062


Mystic Oaks

163 Glenwood Drive, Scotts Valley, CA, 95066


Rillera’S Guest Home

40 Fletcher Court, Watsonville, CA, 95076


Rillera’S Guest Home 2

115 Gera Court, Watsonville, CA, 95076


Paying for Assisted Living in Santa Cruz County

Seniors in Santa Cruz can expect to pay approximately $6,800 per month for assisted living, according to the Genworth Cost of Care Survey 2020. Costs in the area are about 58% higher than the United States as a whole, or $2,500 more. Santa Cruz residents also pay significantly more in comparison to the California average of $5,000, which represents a difference of 36% or $1,800 per month.

The Cost of Assisted Living in Nearby Cities

Santa Cruz County is significantly more expensive than other cities in the state. In southern California, Los Angeles costs $1,800 less, and further north, San Luis Obispo is about $1,000 more affordable than Santa Cruz. However, costs drop even more outside of the Bay Area; seniors in Sacramento, which is the state’s capital city, pay $5,395 per month — that’s $1,405 less. Those living in San Jose, about 30 miles to the northeast of Santa Cruz, can expect to pay $5,875 a month. Costs increase slightly toward the northwest in San Francisco, where city residents pay $6,100 per month. About 35 miles to the south, Salinas has the highest costs in the state; seniors here pay $7,100 per month, which is $300 more than their counterparts in Santa Cruz.

$6800

Santa Cruz County

$5000

California

$4300

The United States

$5000

Los Angeles

$5395

Sacramento

$5800

San Luis Obispo

$5875

San Jose

$6100

San Francisco

$7100

Salinas

Financial Assistance for Assisted Living in Santa Cruz County

California’s Medicaid program, Medi-Cal, offers financial assistance to help impoverished seniors cover the cost of assisted living. Those who are eligible may be able to take part in the state’s Assisted Living Waiver Program (ALWP).

Learn more about these programs, plus who’s eligible, on our Assisted Living in California page.

Financial Assistance for Assisted Living in Santa Cruz County

More Ways to Pay for Assisted Living

While many families use their own funds or personal assets to pay for assisted living, there are plenty of additional options to cover these costs. Some additional ways to finance assisted living costs include:

  • Veterans Benefits
  • Life Insurance Policy
  • Long-Term Care Insurance
  • Reverse Mortgage

For more information about different ways to finance assisted living, visit our Assisted Living in California page.

Free Assisted Living Resources in Santa Cruz County

ResourceContact Service
Senior Network Services of Santa Cruz County(831) 462-1433Senior Network Services has a range of programs to improve the quality of life for older adults living in Santa Cruz County. The agency’s staff assesses the needs of seniors and refers them to the local resources they require. Social workers provide counseling to fill out applications for public benefits, and seniors receive assistance to create a care plan for their particular situation. Volunteers may also help with managing medical bills and submitting insurance claims.
Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program(831) 429-1913The Long-Term Care Ombudsman is responsible for ensuring the quality of life for older citizens living in assisted living facilities and other residential care centers throughout Santa Cruz County. The program’s representatives investigate complaints made by seniors about quality of care, personal dignity, legal concerns, abuse and the rights of residents. All services are confidential and available at no cost.
Lift Line Transportation Service(831) 688-9663This service provides free, door-to-door transportation to older adults who are unable to use standard, fixed-route buses. Seniors can request a trip to medical appointments, dining sites and adult centers within Santa Cruz County. The service works from Monday to Friday, and personal care attendants or traveling companions can ride at no cost. Certain participants may also be eligible for medical transportation to nearby areas outside of Santa Cruz.
Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program(831) 462-1433The Health Insurance Counseling and Advocacy Program provides unbiased, impartial information about Medicare and insurance problems. Volunteers offer forums and individual counseling to help older adults select a plan that suits their specific requirements. The program’s staff assesses if the senior’s health insurance company can cover the cost of long-term care, and assistance to submit claims is also available.
Santa Cruz County Senior Centers(831) 420-6180Santa Cruz County’s Parks and Recreation Department manages several senior centers throughout the area. Older adults have access to a variety of recreational activities, including yoga, tai chi, cinema and dancing; as well as the Senior Computer Center, where they can learn how to use mobile phones and PCs. Instructors teach breathing exercises and guided meditation, and there are also free classes on arts, languages, writing and fitness.
Santa Cruz County Veterans Services Office(831) 464-4575The Santa Cruz County Veterans Services helps those who served in the military to receive the benefits they have earned. Volunteers help veterans to file claims, and seniors with limited income may qualify for a monthly pension, which could contribute to the cost of care at an assisted living facility. Veterans who incurred an injury during their military service may also be eligible for disability compensation.

Assisted Living Laws and Regulations in Santa Cruz County

Santa Cruz County-area assisted living communities must adhere to the comprehensive set of state laws and regulations that all assisted living communities in California are required to follow. Visit our Assisted Living in California page for more information about these laws.

Assisted Living Laws and Regulations in Santa Cruz County