The joy of living in Oakland

The relationship between cities in the Bay Area is like any multi-faceted American family. San Francisco is the straight-A, popular student who is also the star quarterback in high school, while San Jose to the south is the quirky sibling that loves technology and computer science. Oakland, however, is the middle child that flies under the radar and quietly emerges as one of the most successful metro areas in the entire country.

There are many reasons why the homes for sale in Oakland are among the most coveted in the United States. Read on to discover just a few of the perks associated with the East Bay.

Exceptional job market
According to the Huffington Post, the trifecta of cities in the Bay Area (San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose) is expected to post huge gains in the employment market. The Bay Area Council's Economic Institute predicted that over the next two years, the total number of jobs in the region will increase by 7.2 percent.

"The Bay Area economy has been outpacing California and the United States by a wide margin," said Jon Haveman, chief economist with the Economic Institute, according to the news source. "That is likely to continue."

In terms of an industry breakdown, professional and business services will expand 15.5 percent, education and health care by 10 percent and leisure and hospitality by 9 percent. This widespread growth is great news for homebuyers looking for property, because they will not have to hold a particular expertise to find a job in Oakland.

Community efforts to reduce crime
Good neighborhoods embark on innovative projects that help reduce the rate of crime in a given community, and Oakland has recently implemented a new strategy designed to bolster its police force.

The San Francisco Chronicle reported that the Oakland Police would soon be partnering with the California Highway Patrol (CHP) when patrolling neighborhoods. CHP officers will begin sweeping certain areas in November 2012 to help promote "high visibility" through traffic stops and license plate checks, according to CHP Captain Don Morrell. The entire operation will be reviewed after three months to determine the success of efforts.

Such an initiative shows that Oakland government authorities deeply care about the safety of their residents - in fact, Oakland Mayor Jean Quan directly requested aid from the CHP. If your municipality has your back, you will feel safe walking the streets at night.

Cultural institutions
Cultural museums are another facet of a successful metro area, and Oakland is chock-full of such academic institutions. The Oakland Museum of California, located at 1000 Oak Street right by the shores of Lake Merritt, is known for being a haven of unique exhibits and ideas.

One such exhibit is the current celebration of the Glass Art Movement, which is recognized in the "Playing With Fire: Artists of the California Studio Glass Movement," a 32-piece display that will be open until March 13, 2013, according to Mercury News. If you have some free time after moving in, an afternoon here would certainly be a cultural treat.

Thriving real estate market
Finally, if you are looking for quality real estate in Oakland, you are likely to find some of the best deals in the greater Bay Area. The Sacramento Bee reported that Oakland was the United States' top "turnaround town" in 2012 with regards to the housing recession of years past.

However, increased demand is causing home values and asking prices to rise in Oakland. If you are considering a relocation, don't wait - act now to find your dream house in the East Bay.