Willow Glen, San Jose
best places neighborhoods willow glen california
Mimi Chiang-Brown, owner of Willow Glen's Flower Flour
Median household income: $101,700
Median home value: $839,800
Typical 2-bedroom rental: $2,000

Pros: Just a five-minute drive from downtown, Willow Glen nevertheless feels more like its own bustling town than an urban outpost. Local businesses include a children's bookstore and Bill's Cafe, a 36-year-old Sunday brunch fixture. The area hosts regular events like music festivals and wine-tasting walks.

The streets are lined with well-kept homes, ranging from century-old Craftsman houses to recent rebuilds. For folks looking to head downtown or to nearby cities, there are three regional rail lines in or bordering Willow Glen.

Full list: America's Best Places to Live

Cons: Buying isn't cheap. Three-bedroom homes near the main drag start at $750,000. Public schools are improving, but many parents shell out for private options. --V.C.

What's your favorite San Jose neighborhood and why? Send a photo of the area and tell us why you love it to bestplaces@cnnmoney.com or #mybestplaces and your top pick may be featured in an upcoming CNNMoney gallery.

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Source: NeighborhoodScout.com, MONEY research, Maponics, OnBoard Informatics, Bureau of Labor Statistics

Methodology: Reporters began by looking at walkability, green spaces, public transport, a variety of housing, a diverse group of neighbors, easy access to stores, eateries, culture -- and more. After narrowing the list, we crunched dozens of data points from NeighborhoodScout.com to see which 'hoods rose to the top, and then visited to find our top 10 here.

Notes: All median data are for Q1 2013. Considered data include education (local school quality), crime (total crime and crime relative to other U.S. neighborhoods), housing (appreciation, vacancy rate, affordability, and diversity of choices), ease of living (walkability, family-friendliness, population density, and features like green spaces, grocery stores, and movie theaters), and diversity (language, racial, and age).
  @Money - Last updated August 14 2013 11:12 AM ET
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