Why Is Rent in San Francisco So High?

If you want beautiful weather, amazing food, a coastline, nonstop entertainment options, and great public transport, you probably couldn’t find a better city in the entire world than San Francisco. However, if you are the type who cringes at writing big checks every month, then San Francisco rent prices will scare you as to how high rent can be. It’s one of the most expensive cities in the entire world and people earning six-figure incomes are even considered to be living in poverty. However, fear not, as we help you navigate the way to enjoying your best life in one of the most beautiful cities in the world:

Wealthy People Drive Up Prices

One of the main reasons rent in San Francisco is so high is fairly simple: lots and lots of wealthy people live here. San Francisco is a huge tech hub and people who work in that industry tend to do fairly well. This means they can pay more for a place here, which means landlords can expect to charge more. Unfortunately, this leaves a lot of us left out.

In recent years, people have actually begun formally protesting what they see as encroachment by “outsiders” who move to the city for employment reasons and drive up rent. However, San Frisco is far from the first city to have experienced this phenomenon and there’s most likely very little anything can be done about it.

There’s Only So Many Places to Live

However, it wouldn’t be accurate to say that wealthy tech industry employees are the reason rent in San Francisco costs a small fortune every year. Cities like Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City and Miami all have wealthy populations too and have been able to accommodate far greater numbers than San Francisco does.

The other major factor you have to consider is how small San Francisco is in terms of its size. Despite the fact that nearly 800,000 people live here, the city is just 47 square miles. That amounts to nearly 18,000 people living in every square mile this town has to offer. This makes San Francisco the second densest city in the country, behind only New York City.

Obviously, then, as the population grows, rent in San Francisco will grow with it because there are only so many places to live. Landlords can expect to charge top dollar because they face so little competition and every conceivable place you could possibly build on is already spoken for.

Now, let’s look at some ways you can manage to rent in San Francisco, yet keep your costs down.

Find a Roommate

This is almost mandatory for most people. Rent here is so high, that even splitting it is no guarantee it will become affordable. Still, it’s a good start.

Use Public Transportation

If you have a car, you should seriously consider selling it. For one thing, this will give you some spare cash you can use to help cover your rent. However, having a car means needing to park it and, as you can probably imagine, this will definitely bump up your overhead in terms of finding an apartment with a garage or convenient on-street parking.

As we said at the beginning, San Francisco has an amazing public transport system too, so it’s not like a car is even necessary. You’ll have no problem getting around without having to pay an exorbitant price to do so.

Get a Second Job

The economy in San Francisco is doing much better than elsewhere in the nation, meaning you may actually have a fairly easy time finding a second job to help you pay for your place.

While rent in San Francisco is definitely higher than just about anywhere else in the country, that’s no reason not to move here. Just remember that everyone else is facing the same problem, but has somehow found a way to deal with it. Get creative, manage your expectations and take some comfort in knowing that you live in one of the greatest cities on the planet.