Temecula or Murrieta? Which One Is Better?

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Recent Blog

Temecula or Murrieta?

In this article and video, we will give our opinion and experience on whether Temecula or Murrieta is a better fit and why. We love both cities, but it really depends on things like employment, budget, and what you enjoy doing in regard to recreational activities that should drive your decision.

Murrieta is located just north of Temecula off the 15 or 215 freeways. When you look at them on a map, there really is not much difference in regard to population and size. Both contain around 200,000 people and are around 30 square miles.

Employment and Traffic

One huge factor and something we tell everybody is that you need to be strategic in regard to your employment and where you live, whether in Temecula or Murrieta. Everybody hears rumors about how bad Southern California traffic can be; they are all true. During rush hour, you can spend extra hours in your car every week, depending on where you live. Living in Murrieta will definitely be your better choice if your employment is in Riverside, Los Angeles, or that general area. Every day, you will spend 30 to 40 minutes less in your car.

On the flip side, if you work in San Diego or in that general area, South Temecula should be at the top of your list. This will be 30 to 40 minutes less every day as opposed to living in Murrieta.

What is the story’s moral? If you work north, live in Murrieta; if you work south, live in Temecula.


Growth has been rapid over the last 20 years in both cities. With populations increasing by more than 120 percent, there is both good and bad news.  The good? Home values will rise, and more amenities will be at your fingertips. The bad? It will be less and less of that laid-back country life, and traffic will become more regular.

In my personal opinion, it’s going to take many years for either city to become overcrowded. Even though Temecula can get busy, you still have that sense of peace and quiet, especially in most of the communities where you will be living.

Housing, Temecula, or Murrieta?

The video in this blog post goes in depth in regard to the home market over the past few years. Generally speaking, Temecula is going to be anywhere from 3% to 10% more, depending on where you want to live. Obviously, paying more for a home is not necessarily the best thing, but in our opinion, Temecula home values will rise quickly and have a higher upside in the future because of the many attractions Temecula has. With its wineries, RV parks, casinos, and Old Town Temecula, Temecula has become a hotspot for vacationers and day-trippers. Inevitably, when these vacationers realize how beautiful Temecula is, they want to move here. When people want to move here, it helps drive home values.

Your lifestyle and hobbies

Temecula or Murrieta? Well, both cities have a variety of lifestyles and plenty of things to do. Whether you want to live on a golf course, have horses, or grow crops, both Murrieta and Temecula have areas in which you can do this. I have a few blog posts on horse property and golf areas in Temecula that you might want to look at. The horse property areas are Meadowview and Los Ranchitos. Golf course communities include Redhawk and Temeku Hills in Temecula and Bear Creek in Murrieta. If you are an avid golfer and like the idea of living on a golf course, my suggestion would be Bear Creek. My mother and father-in-law lived there for years and loved it.

If you are looking for larger lots and like the idea of growing crops like citrus trees and avocado trees, I have a video on De Luz. De Luz is just west of the 15 freeway in Temecula and is a wonderful place with awesome views and country living.

Things to do

When it comes to things to do, does Temecula or Murrieta win? Well, both cities have restaurants, an old town area, hiking, and golfing, but I do have to give the edge to Temecula. Temecula has the wineries, which are fantastic, but Murrieta, with its abundance of restaurants, outdoor mall, and Old Town, does not compare in my opinion. Having said that, the appeal of fewer amenities and people in Murrieta might attract you.


Schools in Temecula or Murrieta will be in the top 20% of all schools in California. If you do a search, most schools in Temecula and Murrieta are going to rate 8 to 10 on both their overall score and test scores.


I’ve lived in many places throughout Southern California, and Temecula or Murrieta are incredibly safe. Both of these cities make me feel safer than living on the beach. You don’t see many homeless, and drugs are not evident like in many of the beach cities in Southern California. I also feel both cities are incredibly clean. If you walk down the streets, you’re not going to see garbage, and people seem to have pride in their ownership and love the communities they live in. When you begin your home search, you will notice how well-maintained each of these individual communities is. It really is nice to come home every day to a beautiful area or community.


One of the reasons people move to Southern California is the weather, and both Murrieta and Temecula are great for that. I have read that Marietta is a little hotter than Temecula, but in my opinion, it’s not going to be noticeable. Your hot months in both cities will be June, July, August, and part of September. The rainy season typically occurs in December, January, and February. Overall, we love the weather in both of these cities. There is nothing better than waking up in the morning and seeing the sun 300 days a year. I even prefer the weather in Temecula over the beach. Yes, the beach is going to be around 10 degrees cooler, but it is very humid. The last summer we lived at the beach, it seemed like we were constantly sweating, and it was very uncomfortable.


I’m going to give the win to Murrieta on this one, and we are referring to traffic in the city, not the freeway. Even though the population is relatively similar in Temecula and Murrieta, we believe that there are more day-trippers or vacationers visiting things like the casino, wineries, and Old Town. The streets in the town of Temecula are definitely going to have heavier traffic. As we have mentioned in countless other videos and blogs, once you get inside the community where you live in Temecula, it’s going to be very quiet.

The Future of Real Estate

Temecula and Murrieta will continue to expand. As the appeal of big cities diminishes, we personally feel places like Temecula and Murrieta will grow tremendously. This will drive real estate prices in both cities to the upside. I don’t think Murrieta will pass Temecula in terms of percentages and median home sales prices any time soon. If you’re looking for pure investment purposes, we would go with Temecula. If you’re a family looking for convenience in regards to work and life balance, outdoor activities, or safety, either city is going to be a great option.

Thank you for reading our blog. We are a local husband-and-wife real estate brokerage (Greenleaf Real Estate) and appraisal company. If you have any questions regarding real estate in or around the Temecula area, please don’t hesitate to call us. We have some great VIP programs for both buyers and sellers. We will represent you with honesty and integrity while saving you money.

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