Vice news - What It Costs To Live In San Francisco

#1
Video
Perennially perched at or near the top of lists of America’s most expensive and affluent cities, San Francisco is increasingly out of reach for people who would be card-carrying members of the American middle class elsewhere. VICE Money spent a day with a state university professor to see how her family of four deals with the city’s high cost of living.
I live in California and have only visited San Francisco four times and every time that I went to visit, I really didn't want to leave. My life would be so different since I live in a town and San Fran would be awesome but I can't afford it.

It would be nice if I could though. But at the same time, people will always find a way.
 
#4
$2400 per month, with subsidies? I can't imagine living in SF on a single income. $100,000 being considered low income is appalling.
 

hateradio

The Most Dangerous Yes Man
#5
It's because it's the only metropolitan city in the peninsula. Everything else is a boring suburb, and also expensive. 🙄
 
#6
Pay out the ass so you can walk around and smell piss and shit all day, get harassed by very aggressive homeless people, unless the building you live in has parking included with the rent, it's next to impossible to rent a parking space, it's a nice city, but it has so many fucking problems to be worth the price.
 
#8
I lived in Bayview (southern part of SF) for $550 a month. About 20 minutes away from downtown.

If you are single and young it isn't difficult to live there at all.
 
#9
A literal shit ton of money
that always makes me interested to learn how people make it, some just work in the bay but live in Sacramento and I guess just living with family also really helps. But then some make more than enough, last time that I went and I think it's cool that people around my age( 20's) have the freedom to do what they want.

They seem to be surviving somehow, I went to this indie dance party thing and it was fun to just experience what It would be like to do that stuff as if it was just another Saturday night.
 
#10
I was born and raised in SF but left in the early 2000's.

It was expensive then and had a lot of the same problems, but holy shit is it on a different level today.
 
#12
I lived in Bayview (southern part of SF) for $550 a month. About 20 minutes away from downtown.

If you are single and young it isn't difficult to live there at all.
Sounds like you have multiple roommates and are still liable to get killed every time you step out of your house anyway. Or you've been here for 20+ years under rent control
 
#14
"You ain't about this San Fran life homey" - someone making $1,000,000 a year talking down to someone making $250,000 a year
 

wenis

Registered for GAF on September 11, 2001.
#15
I've been making it work for ten years now. It is possible without a crazy paying job. Just have to be willing to budget and do some crazy shit to earn money.
 
#16
Pay out the ass so you can walk around and smell piss and shit all day, get harassed by very aggressive homeless people, unless the building you live in has parking included with the rent, it's next to impossible to rent a parking space, it's a nice city, but it has so many fucking problems to be worth the price.
So don't bring a car. Cars aren't for cities. That solves one of those problems.

In a city with walkability and a half functioning transit system a car can be pretty superfluous and a waste of money. ( but I'm in the northeast where it's easier so idk)
 
#22
The sad thing is that while San Francisco has some cool places, the city itself is dirty and shitty (Literally). It's also filled with poor homeless who haven't got a place to go because of the insane prices everywhere.
 
#23
Next year, when I get there, I plan on living on the suburbia and commuting to work to make that a bit less appalling. The BART is pretty nice from what I've seen anyway so I oughta have a... nice enough time...
 

wenis

Registered for GAF on September 11, 2001.
#27
What kind of crazy shit?
when I was younger i did some nude modeling for the other art school in the city I didn't attend. there was also taking on geriatric private care gig i took on for a few months before the lady passed on. doing part time work in a sex shop in the soma (not like good vibrations, a much more seedier joint).

work man. any work i could find to earn the cash.
 
#28
I lived in Bayview (southern part of SF) for $550 a month. About 20 minutes away from downtown.

If you are single and young it isn't difficult to live there at all.
I mean, I lived in Ingleside for $480/month, but had 12 roommates and shared a room with an asshole. So it's doable, you'll just hate your life.
 
#29
It's because it's the only metropolitan city in the peninsula. Everything else is a boring suburb, and also expensive. 🙄
It's amazing they don't try to build actual towns there, and provide a similar type of urban life as SF, or beef up rail transportation to make it easier to get around without a car or lots of parking spaces.

I only just saw that Oakland, a city I always imagined as something like Brooklyn, is actually only as dense as Staten Island, a suburb if I ever knew one. All land use decisions on the west coast make absolutely no sense to me.
 
#31
when I was younger i did some nude modeling for the other art school in the city I didn't attend. there was also taking on geriatric private care gig i took on for a few months before the lady passed on. doing part time work in a sex shop in the soma (not like good vibrations, a much more seedier joint).

work man. any work i could find to earn the cash.
Gotta do what you have to in order to survive.
 
#34
I've always wanted to visit California. It's always fascinated me. From the gaming hubs to the city lights and atmosphere. Even Blink-182 made a song about it.

I couldn't afford anything. If I ever get reincarnated or if I ever come back to life as someone else; then I'd try to live out my dream life out there. I was also a young adult watching G4 and thinking California was some sorta holy place for gaming or feeling good.

I wonder how people afford it. Those who actually enjoy life and aren't fighting poverty. The Midwest is cheap. $100,000 around here is upper class. I couldn't imagine pouring all that money into something that costs so much less just a thousand miles away.
 
#35
Even outside of SF it’s pricey - the best deal I could find on a 600 sq foot apartment by myself, with no amenities or parking, without living in a ghetto or an RV, was $1575 a month in Sunnyvale, 40 miles away.
 
#36
I've always wanted to visit California. It's always fascinated me. From the gaming hubs to the city lights and atmosphere. Even Blink-182 made a song about it.

I couldn't afford anything. If I ever get reincarnated or if I ever come back to life as someone else; then I'd try to live out my dream life out there. I was also a young adult watching G4 and thinking California was some sorta holy place for gaming or feeling good.

I wonder how people afford it. Those who actually enjoy life and aren't fighting poverty. The Midwest is cheap. $100,000 around here is upper class. I couldn't imagine pouring all that money into something that costs so much less just a thousand miles away.
Wages tend to be higher here, which helps a bit, but still not fully. One reason why it's worth sticking around here is because it's home and where my family is. Moving it sounds great financially, but I'd lose the close connection with family. Also, the shear variety of cultures, cities, and landscapes is really something else and a huge benefit. That and there are lots of jobs to be had, mainly in technical fields. I would've loved to live in the town I went to college in, but there were no jobs. The choice was LA or SF for most of my classmates.
 
#38
I've always wanted to visit California. It's always fascinated me. From the gaming hubs to the city lights and atmosphere. Even Blink-182 made a song about it.

I couldn't afford anything. If I ever get reincarnated or if I ever come back to life as someone else; then I'd try to live out my dream life out there. I was also a young adult watching G4 and thinking California was some sorta holy place for gaming or feeling good.

I wonder how people afford it. Those who actually enjoy life and aren't fighting poverty. The Midwest is cheap. $100,000 around here is upper class. I couldn't imagine pouring all that money into something that costs so much less just a thousand miles away.
That's why they move in droves and clobber affordability in the new tech hub cities by overpaying on houses with straight cash.
 

Rhaknar

The Steam equivalent of the drunk friend who keeps offering to pay your tab all night.
#39
everytime I read these articles I wonder how the fuck the Giantbomb (and I guess Gamespot) cats can afford to be in San Francisco... I mean, I cant imagine writing about videogames can pay that well, but apparently it does? :eek:
 
#42
If you're single, and make a decent salary its fine, but honestly I'd personally avoid SF. During my time there I've found that people on the average tend to be more rude and full of themselves. I get the vibe that many there don't have a proper understanding of how the rest of the world works. You just have to smile and ignore the silly things that people say or talk about. LA is miles better than SF with that in mind. LA peeps are way more down to earth, and open minded IMO. Cali in general is kinda weird though.
 
#43
If you're single, and make a decent salary its fine, but honestly I'd personally avoid SF. During my time there I've found that people on the average tend to be more rude and full of themselves. I get the vibe that many there don't have a proper understanding of how the rest of the world works. You just have to smile and ignore the silly things that people say or talk about. LA is miles better than SF with that in mind. LA peeps are way more down to earth, and open minded IMO.
Aaaand also expensive as fuck.
 

offtopic

He measures in centimeters
#45
I live with my wife and kids about 20-25 minutes away (no traffic) from SF and the entire region is just insanely expensive. A salary less than 6 figures is almost impossible to live on unless single with significant splitting of costs with roommates.
 
#46
everytime I read these articles I wonder how the fuck the Giantbomb (and I guess Gamespot) cats can afford to be in San Francisco... I mean, I cant imagine writing about videogames can pay that well, but apparently it does? :eek:
Roommates/live somewhere shitty/they're natives and have family to live with
 
#47
It's amazing they don't try to build actual towns there, and provide a similar type of urban life as SF, or beef up rail transportation to make it easier to get around without a car or lots of parking spaces.

I only just saw that Oakland, a city I always imagined as something like Brooklyn, is actually only as dense as Staten Island, a suburb if I ever knew one. All land use decisions on the west coast make absolutely no sense to me.
I was born and raised in a California city that everyone keeps saying is on the rise, the only change I've seen is everyone downtown is raising the cost of rent in anticipation of us becoming a "big city"

On the public transportation here, my brother amtraks to the bay for work and I ride a bus train bus combo (10 miles) to college and it takes about the same time for both of us.

Everyone talks about building their city into the next SF but all they are really doing is using that as an excuse to cash out from the people of the city without investing in public transportation, Etc.
It took a cop being killed at a stop I catch a bus at for the regional transit workers to come out to install gates on the stairs the homeless shit and piss on, fix an handicapped elevator.
Also the rich white communities block any expansion of the transit system to prevent the "undesirables" from coming to their community.