San Francisco is an amazing place to live, which, as we all know, makes apartment-hunting in the Bay tricky. You may even consider desperate measures to shift the rent/income ratio in your favor—something transplants quickly realize after moving here. Affordable San Francisco apartments are hard to come by, but they do exist. Whether you want to live in the Sunset or the Mission, check out our rotating selection of digs ranging in price between $1,000 and $2,000 per person, per month, from real estate site Zumper’s inventory. But do it quickly: These will be gone before you can say "security deposit."
Fillmore and Oak Streets
2-bedroom in Hayes Valley, $3,950/month ($1,975 per person)
This 2-bedroom Hayes Valley condo is a study in contrasts. The remodeled kitchen features stainless steel appliances, the apartment boats two full bathrooms and storage space abounds. On the other hand, there’s a bizarre free-standing fireplace that belongs in an Alaskan cabin and not in a San Francisco living room. This 2-bedroom is also home to what appears to be the exact extra storage nook that once housed Harry Potter. We’re not wild about the track lighting, nor the weird outdoor space consisting of a square of wood bordered by four walls, but in terms of interior space and amazing location, this spot is a bargain.
Point Lobos Avenue and 45th Avenue
We’ve fallen in love with this charming cottage near the gorgeous bluffs of Lands End. Close to the fun shops and restaurants of the Outer Richmond, not to mention the Legion of Honor and Ocean Beach, this rental is perfect for either a family or group of smart roommates. Our only concern is the slightly creepy wood-paneled 3rd bedroom just off the garage, but in terms of privacy from the rest of the house, it can’t be beat. The single family 3-bedroom is home to a wood-burning fireplace, hardwood floors, a remodeled kitchen, garage and backyard. Could it be home to you too?
You’re in luck! There are several studios available at 434 Leavenworth. Don’t let the neighborhood scare you—it’s changing faster than we change our pick for the city’s best hamburger. This building’s spacious studios feature in-unit laundry, hardwood floors and updated kitchens. They’re actually pretty darn adorable. We particularly like the sophisticated exterior and proximity to Union Square, BART and the Civic Center. For a San Francisco singleton determined to live alone, this building is a smart pick.
2 Genoa Place #8
This warm and cozy 2-bedroom lies just in the shadow of one of San Francisco’s most treasured icons—Coit Tower. Telegraph Hill is an upscale urban neighborhood popular with wealthy couples and tourists, so finding an affordable apartment amidst the millionaires is like finding a needle in a real estate haystack. You’d think a (relatively) cheap apartment in such an expensive neighborhood would be lacking on the charm, but nope. #8 is as cute as they come. We’re looking forward to an invite over for a drink in that picturesque kitchen, please and thank you.
Collins Street and Anza Street
USF students take note—there’s an apartment available in the middle of the city in the middle of the school year. This 2-bedroom near campus is basic but large and clean, making it perfect for a pair of bookworms with a heavy homework load. In-building laundry, parking and proximity to public transit make this rental low on luxury but high on convenience. Still want that luxury? High-end shops and restaurants are a few blocks away on bustling and beautiful California Street. Snap this one up before it gets grabbed by a transfer student who doesn’t fully appreciate the unit’s amazing proximity to Trader Joe’s.