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SF's Population Is Growing Way Faster Than Its Housing Stock

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Nearly half of San Francisco's existing housing stock was built before 1940, and building since then has struggled to keep up with population growth. A new report from Paragon Real Estate examines the amount of residential building that has occurred per decade since 1940 and compares it to San Francisco's population growth over the same period of time. The low amounts of new housing built were less of a problem in the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, when the population of the city was falling. But once the 90s hit, population growth took off. The number of people living in San Francisco is currently at its highest level ever, at approximately 850,000. That's a 45,000-person increase since just 2010, with only 7,500 new housing units built in the same time.

Since the 1940s, when the city built 38,800 new units of housing, the number of new homes built has steadily fallen nearly every decade. In the 1990s, for example, when San Francisco's population grew by 52,000 people, only 16,272 new units of housing were constructed. And although Mayor Ed Lee is pushing to build or rehabilitate 30,000 new units by 2020, if the city's population growth continues, even that number may not be enough to meet demand.

San Francisco home prices have soared in recent years, far outpacing the rate of inflation since the mid-90s, when the latest population boom really began. The city's median house price in 2014 was $1.075 million, and the median condo price was $956K. With the spring selling season about to kick off and very little new supply added since last year's wild selling season, are prices about to go up even further?

· February 2015 San Francisco Real Estate Report [Paragon Real Estate]
· No Surprise: SF's Housing Market Was Bonkers This Spring [Curbed SF]