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Trustinglife's avatar

Where would you suggest I move within the bay area?

Asked by Trustinglife (6623points) May 21st, 2009 from iPhone

Here’s a little bit about me and what I’m looking for:

I’m considering staying in Marin or moving to Berkeley, Oakland, SF, or Santa Cruz, primarily, but open to other good possibilities.
I’m 28, single, and will likely be looking for work soon.
Not sure if I want to try affording to live in SF.
I’d LOVE to live in a big group house of 5–6 people, preferably around my age or so. Age isn’t crucial, though – I’m real comfortable with people much older than me.
I have hesitations about all the places I mentioned above, but not excited about moving out of the area either.

I don’t want you to feel restricted by only sharing what you think I would love best – I’m as interested in your intuitive hunches about all this.

I have given notice and will be moving out of my home in Marin on June 30. I’m really wanting to feel more connected to people where I live next. Thanks for your input!

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9 Answers

LC_Beta's avatar

I have lived in SF for 5 years and have found that the cost-of-living really varies. It doesn’t have to be as expensive as people think it is. I live in the inner sunset district, a stone’s-throw from golden gate park, and pay $475/month for rent. Inner-sunset is a safe neighborhood, and only a 20 minute bike (or train) ride to the middle of downtown. I absolutely love SF, and I love my neighborhood as well. I’d recommend it to almost anyone.

YARNLADY's avatar

Santa Cruz is a college town, with lots of shared living possibilities, although probably not many jobs to be had.

sdeutsch's avatar

My husband and I lived in Alameda for 7 years, and we absolutely loved it there. It’s close enough to SF that it’s an easy commute for work (20 minutes by either ferry or BART), but it’s got a great small-town sort of atmosphere. Almost anywhere on the island is walkable to one of the main shopping streets, and you quickly get to know the owners of the shops and restaurants.

As for cost of living, it’s definitely cheaper than being in SF – it’s roughly the same as the nicer parts of Oakland, I think, but I always felt a lot safer in Alameda than in Oakland (the crime rate in Alameda is also really low – that’s another thing we really liked about it).

If you want to get a feel for the town, go drive around the island a bit, and then stop at Tucker’s on Park Street for an ice cream sundae – you’ll never want to leave! =)

cwilbur's avatar

I have never lived in the Bay Area, but I’ll mention this: group houses with 6 or 7 people seem like an awesome idea, but the more people you have, the more ways there are for things to break down, and the more people you have to chase down when it’s time to pay the rent or the utilities. They’re awesome when they work right, but they’re hell on wheels when one of the people turns into a jerk.

sdeutsch's avatar

This just occurred to me: If you’re interested in moving as far south as Cupertino, check out this listing – I know one of the guys moving out of this house (only because he wants to be closer to work – otherwise, he would have stayed), and his housemates are an amazing group of people. Living with them, I can guarantee you’d feel connected!

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

I don’t know where in Marin you live (county or Marin proper) but take a look at neighborhoods in the Upper Haight, Diamond Heights, Mt. Davidson and also the Presidio housing.

Trustinglife's avatar

@sdeutsch Wow! I took a close look at the listing and website for that house. Looks amazing. Not quite my scene, and a little more than I want to pay (it’s $1,100, even for a house of 7–8), and I don’t think I want to live in Cupertino. But fascinating to check out. I’ll definitely look into Alameda – thanks for the tip on that.

@hungryhungryhortence, I’m in San Rafael now.

@LC_Beta, $475??? How in the world? Any suggestions for where to look to find possibilities like that, in addition to Craigslist?

LC_Beta's avatar

Craigslist is your best bet – it got me my apartment, all my furniture, my bike, and every one of my housemates (I’m the senior tenant so I just sublet my spare bedroom out to people who are passing trough for a few months or looking for more permanent housing. It’s good for me to do it that way because people tend to respect your lifestyle more when they know they’re not gonna be around forever).

I have an in-law unit in a three story house. The people on the other two floors number about 5 each, whereas my lease is for 2 people. The only drawback is that I have no oven! :p

Jeruba's avatar

What kind of work will you be looking for? That might play a part in where you’d want to be living.

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