Living well is easy in Novato. Marin County’s northernmost municipality is located just over a 40-minute drive north from San Francisco and has everything you could ask for in a home.
- Green spaces abound
Novato lies nestled in a primarily rural setting of verdant hills and forested valleys. It takes pride in its over two dozen parks and recreation spaces, ranging from tot lots to athletic fields and golf courses to facilities such as a 16,000-square-foot skate park.
There are several hundreds of acres of preserves and wildlife refuges in the area, including the 139-acre regional Stafford Lake County Park; the Deer Island, Indian Valley, Ignacio Valley, Hamilton Wetlands, and Loma Verde preserves; the Pacheco Pond Wildlife Area; and the Olompali State Historic Park. For the very best views of the city, head up to 1558-foot Mt. Burden.
All this spells hours of endless fun in the outdoors.
- It’s a good place for business
The city’s strategic location, economic strength, and high quality of life has attracted biotech firms, technology companies, retailers, and more. BioMarin Pharmaceutical, 2K Marin, Toys For Bob, The Republic of Tea, and the Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company are just some of the businesses that are based in Novato.
- It has a strong sense of community
The community spirit is nurtured in Novato. Volunteerism is actively encouraged and residents regularly donate their time, skills, and resources to support a variety of nonprofits and charities.
There’s also a wealth of community events the whole year round that bring neighbors and neighborhoods together. Most are held in Old Town and include an annual 4th of July Parade and the Novato Festival of Art, Wine and Music.
- Excellent education for students of all levels
The Novato Unified School District is the city’s top employer and administers eight elementary, three middle, and two high schools, as well as the K-8 Novato Charter School and the Hill Education Center.
Schools in the district are top-rated (several are California Distinguished Schools) and have earned numerous accolades. Hamilton Elementary is the recipient of the Title 1 Academic Achievement Award from the state and Novato High got a Silver ranking from US News & World Report’s rankings of the best high schools in the country.
Private schools in Novato include Good Shepherd Lutheran School, Our Lady of Loretto School, Marin. Christian Academy, and North Bay Christian Academy.
- Environment is king
Building a sustainable future is a priority for Novato and the city already has a Climate Change Action Plan and several green initiatives in place.
These include integrating recycled water into irrigation systems, providing residents with a clean energy option through Marin Clean Energy, enacting ordinances that safeguard the city’s hillsides and wetlands, and more. Novato also takes the lead in a Green Building Standards.
- Art and culture is alive and well
Novato has a thriving art and culture scene. The Novato Arts Center provides space for over 40 artists to pursue their art. The center is also home to the Marin Museum of Contemporary Art, a non-collecting museum showcasing the work of artists through exhibits, workshops and others.
Then there’s the Novato Theater, which is in the process of being rebuilt. The performance arts are going strong as well, with the award-winning Novato Theater Company a source of pride for the city.
Cultural and historic landmarks in the area include the Space Station Museum, the oldest house north of San Francisco Bay at Olompali State Historic Park, and the Museum of the American Indian.
- Fun shopping and dining.
Downtown Novato, anchored by Grant Avenue, has an array of boutiques, specialty stores and restaurants, many of which are independently owned. Check out Vintage Oaks Shopping Center, which has earned rave reviews for its wide range of stores and ample parking space.
Real estate in Novato is among the highest valued in the country – the average listing price here places it in the top 3% of 2,700 markets across the nation – but it’s still relatively affordable compared to other areas in Marin County.
The housing market is composed mostly of single-family homes along with a smattering of condos and lots. Residences come in all kinds of architectural styles and sizes, though in general homes are spacious and lots are roomy. Some of the styles you’ll see here are ranch, Craftsman-style, and Mediterranean.
Due to its varying topography and rural feel, Novato offers a wide range of homes, from sprawling horse properties to luxurious waterfront escapes.
Some of the neighborhoods here are:
- Bel Marin Keys
- Pleasant Valley
- San Marin
- Marin Country Club
- Indian Valley
- Green Point
- Black Point
- Pacheco Valle
More new homes are being built, so buyers can expect even more options.
Want more information on Novato? Call Abby at 415-497-9542 or email her at atanem@cbnorcal.