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pleiades's avatar

San Francisco: How do young adults budget in their means to battle the high living costs?

Asked by pleiades (6571points) April 15th, 2014

What are some strategies some use to afford the high costs of living in San Francisco? It’s still a dream of mine to move there within 10 years time.

How do young adults afford to live in the Mission District? What are the strategies used in this town by the young and cool seemingly, “struggling” artists, musicians and the like.

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16 Answers

janbb's avatar

Unfortunately, the best strategy seems seems to be to make a lot of money at your day job, i.e. in IT. I hope to retire there but also not sure if I could afford it.

BeenThereSaidThat's avatar

well first off I would move out of San Francisco. A young adult should have their life very flexible at this point. go somewhere less expensive. Don’t move to the northeast whatever you do!

GloPro's avatar

It’s easier if you have 2 incomes towards your expenses. Rent a garage outside of the city for your one car. Get used to biking or canning/train everywhere. Shop bulk or co-op. Get a second fluff job. Don’t move there with no strong paying job.

Why San Fran?

JLeslie's avatar

Most of my friends in NYC lived with roommates for a few years when they were first getting out on there own. I would assume that happens in San Fran also.

pleiades's avatar

@GloPro I like the hustling and bustling of the city life but I love the west coast so seems like a natural fit. Plus I love how the city is condense and I could use walking around and public transportation as exercise. In San Diego every town is so spread out. Put simply I’m more inspired out in the city with other people seemingly getting stuff done. There’s a very conservative mindset here in San Diego, although it’s changed drastically from beach city America to having a booming inner city cultural scene. It’s quite the scene from as little as from 2006 up to now, however, how can I say this… There’s not much of an experimental and open minded art scene down here? I feel like I’d be able to spread my wings in SF and network more freely. Most people who are popular in the arts in San Diego are kind of like left over middle tier artists from NY, SF, Portland or LA.

stanleybmanly's avatar

The smart move is to look into Oakland or Berkeley. If you have friends or relatives who will allow you to crash for a bit, you might want to visit and experience the joys of extreme sticker shock.

pleiades's avatar

@stanleybmanly That doesn’t sound too bad. Berkeley I’d consider a move to, but I’m a Chargers fan. Do you think I’d be able to survive a single day in Oakland wearing a Chargers hat? Hehe

stanleybmanly's avatar

Whatever you decide to do, you should act soon. There’s a huge influx of 20 and 30 year olds into the town with 6 figure incomes. The Mission has been transformed. It’s now surpassed North Beach with block after block of wall to wall restaurants, and crowds of kids in their 20s choking the streets into the wee hours.

gailcalled's avatar

Two male friends of mine, now married and in their early forties, each rented a large SF. painted lady with several friends.They had an enormous bedroom and shared a bath and beautiful communal public spaces. Of course, the groups were compatible and agreed on all the house rules. One of the bedrooms, I remember, had picture windows, a working fireplace, high ceilings and beautiful old wood work.

Coloma's avatar

With studio rents topping 2k a month, you must get creative, I love @gailcalled s sharing, communal/intentional living would be the way to go. 2–3 people sharing the rent, or several couples.

filmfann's avatar

My daughter lives in the lower Haight, where she shares rent for a house with three gay gentlemen.

wildpotato's avatar

My cousin did it by living in the Tenderloin, and he still paid quite a bit. Now he lives in Oakland with a roomie.

johnpowell's avatar

My sisters oldest kid is a 21 year old male and tried for a year to live in the bay area. He is a carpenter. He ended up living in a shithole in Oakland and ended up going back to Portland. Portland is pretty much a affordable SF. Our nice 3 bedroom house in a safe area of Portland was under 1K a month and it was 10 minutes from downtown. 1K in SF would get you a closet.

GloPro's avatar

I know you love the west coast, but have you ever explored Denver? Cheaper, liberal, artistic. Being a Chargers fan still sucks but it wouldn’t get you killed. You could even find a little house with a yard for a garden if that suits you.

janbb's avatar

My son has shared a four room apartment in Noe Valley (near the Mission) in SF for four years. He pays a fairly reasonable rent but since he’s been there rents have doubled and even tripled in the city.

I agree that sharing in Berkeley or Oakland would be more affordable although housing can be tough to find in Berkeley because of the student population.

pleiades's avatar

@GloPro I could go for Denver, I’ve got an uncle and two cousins out there. I like the idea of having my own garden that is for sure!

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