Apartments for Rent in San Francisco
Finding an apartment in San Francisco may be a little more difficult than spotting a sea lion at Pier 39, but it's certainly not an impossible proposition. Make no mistake: San Francisco apartments are rare and expensive — the vacancy rate in San Francisco is only 2%, and the majority of the city is renter occupied. Now, don't let that scare you away. Living in San Francisco is well worth the hassle and cost of finding the perfect apartment. In this brief guide, we hope to help you prepare for apartment shopping in San Francisco. There are many things to consider when looking for San Francisco apartments — neighborhood, layout, and even season are important factors when looking for San Francisco apartments. Let's take a look at some of the important items to consider while looking for an apartment in San Francisco.
Life in San Francisco
There's a reason that the flag of San Francisco shows a rising phoenix, because this city is one that has shown remarkable resilience, and has come back from the ashes several times. Survivor of earthquakes in both 1906 and 1989, San Francisco has bounced back from every obstacle in its path, and it just keeps getting better. The landscape of the city is made of hills and waterfront, and when you start looking for your San Francisco apartment, you'll be overwhelmed at the diversity of the neighborhoods. Don't fret, though — the city is densely populated, only 7 miles on either side, so getting from one neighborhood to another is a breeze with the great public transportation, or even better, your bicycle. Bikes are a major method of transportation in the city, and every morning sees tens of thousands of commuters pedaling to work rather than burning fuel.
Of course, there's no shortage of things to do in the City by the Bay. The wealth of available activities is far too numerous to list, but it ranges from the typical to the cultural to the unique to the bizarre. San Francisco is at once a liberal, intelligent, beautiful, amazing place to live.
Found 1,514 apartments for rent in San Francisco
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Things to Consider when Renting an Apartment
Price: San Francisco is one of the most progressive, thriving cities in the nation right now. The benefits of living here are many, but the price and apartment availability reflects just how in-demand city life is. Kiplingers rates San Francisco as having the 6th highest Cost of Living Index in the U.S., and apartment rentals are no exception. Average rates in San Francisco, even for a 1 bedroom unit, can exceed $2,000 per month. Now, take a moment to pick yourself up off the floor, and let's look at some of the good news. The city does have rent control laws in place for apartments built before 1979 — which includes most of them — so you know if you're renting one of these units, your rent, however steep, won't spike suddenly.
Season: Spring and summer are the most difficult times to find a place, with winter as the quietest season. Students keep things busy in spring and summer, but finding an apartment even in quieter times is a challenge.
Be Prepared to Be Impulsive: We realize that this advice seems out of place when we're talking about finding the right apartment, but when it comes to San Francisco, apartments get snatched up quickly. If you see a place you like, you are guaranteed that someone else will see it as well, and if you decide to «sleep on it,» it could cost you the apartment, and cause another several weeks or months of arduous searching. If you see a place you like, snag it immediately. You could luck into an apartment in only a few hours. Don't let that opportunity pass you by, because it won't happen that easily the second time.
Be Prepared to Be Thorough: When searching for an apartment in San Francisco, you're going to have to be more prepared than the other guy looking for a place to hang his hat. Treat your apartment search the same way you'd treat a job search — and not only a job search, but a job interview for the singular position of your dream job. If you blow this, you won't get another shot. That sounds like hyperbole, and it is, but putting yourself in that mindset will help you get prepared. Get yourself a three-ring binder and organize it with all the documentation you'll need. This includes your credit report, your rental application, proof of income by means of a letter of employment, pay stubs, etc., several references, and if you're planning on living with a pet, you'll want to include documentation of veterinary visits and immunizations. Save up enough for the first month's rent and a security deposit, if you can, and have your checkbook ready. A deposit paid on the spot could mean the difference between you and the other renters.