Irvine is 16.54% less expensive than New York (rent-free). Yes, the cost of living in Irvine is higher than in most cities in the United States. On the other hand, the economy here is strong and, some would say, vibrant. One of the main reasons is that Irvine is home to several large employers within its city limit.
There aren't many suburbs that can boast of this fact. For example, the University of California at Irvine employs nearly 16,000 people. Blizzard Entertainment, the city's third largest employer, is also located here and Verizon Wireless. In short, there are many well-paying positions within the city limits.
Travel times are also among the best in the country for this very reason. Irvine is part of Anaheim-Santa Ana-Irvine Metro Div. Metropolitan Area, ranked 10th out of 273 cities in the U.S. Department of State in terms of cost of living.
According to C2ER (the Council for Economic and Community Research), the cost of living in Irvine is estimated to be 148.5% of the national average, making it one of the most expensive cities in the U.S. UU. Not only are Irvine home prices among the most expensive in California, but Irvine real estate also consistently ranks among the most expensive in the United States.