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.”
440 9th Avenue
This sleek 2-bedroom just off Geary Street in the Richmond contains an actual wood-burning fireplace and a parking space. We know, it’s extraordinary. The rest of the apartment is pretty standard, although the kitchen appliances and on-site laundry are nice bonuses, considering few San Francisco rental units contain working dishwashers. But the unspoken clincher for this available space is its proximity to the great part of Clement Street. Green Apple Books, fantastic dim sum, and some of the city’s best dive bars are mere blocks away. How this listing doesn’t mention the geography in relation to Burma Superstar’s tea leaf salad remains a mystery. Now that you know, snap it up!
1730 Laguna Street
2-bedroom in Lower Pacific Heights, $3,900/month ($1,950 per person)
Once inside, this 2-bedroom looks like the kind of place Buffalo Bill would keep prisoners in The Silence of the Lambs. The picture of the basement alone looks like police evidence in a missing person’s case. That aside, the gorgeous detailed exterior of the building is what people dream of when moving to San Francisco. This affordable-ish 2-bedroom is also 3 short, safe blocks from the chic shops and restaurants of Fillmore Street, the Sundance Kabuki Cinema, and the fun culture of Japantown. Location is everything, and this apartment is situated so perfectly, it’ll be worth living in what looks like a set from a 1920s-era horror film. And hey, maybe you could turn it into a rec room...?
22 Skyview Way
2-bedroom West of Twin Peaks, $3,700/month ($1,850 per person)
22 Skyview Way doesn't exactly come with a view. However, this simple 2-bedroom unit is an entire house; a rare San Francisco rental find indeed! This places is so classically American, it actually comes with a den and entire parking garage. Basically, it’s like living in the suburbs without having to mow the lawn. There’s not much within walking distance, but to the right car-owning renter, snapping up an entire single family home for under 2 grand-per-bedroom is worth the extra effort.
400 Upper Terrace #303
Bear with us on this one, because the inside of this 2-bedroom apartment doesn't look ideal. Wall-to-wall carpeting and wood-paneling class the apartment down, and the bathroom looks like the public restroom at a Carl’s Jr. But who cares about the inside when every window features views of the Golden Gate Bridge and San Francisco Bay? Ample closet space, included parking and access to public transportation are nice, but also: you can see the Golden Gate Bridge from this apartment. The actual Golden Gate Bridge. A view this special trumps most interior issues, we think.
Felton Street and Cambridge Street
Yep, you’re reading that correctly. This 4-bedroom single-family home is available for under five grand a month. Behold the remodeled kitchen! Check out that beautiful backyard! Marvel at the gate on the front door… Okay, so the Excelsior isn’t exactly Pacific Heights. But like every other neighborhood in San Francisco, it's seeing a large and swift influx of new renters. Before we know it, this southern part of town will be just as expensive as everywhere else. Lock in this great deal now, folks. This sweet house is a steal.