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Curbed Comparisons: What $2,900 rents you in SF right now

Making your budget is only half the story; here's five case studies for what the same sum sells in different neighborhoods

Welcome back to Curbed Comparisons, a regular column exploring what you can rent for a set dollar amount in different neighborhoods. Is one person's studio another person's townhouse? Let's find out. Today's price: $2,900/month.

↑ Let's start small. Particularly small in the case of this studio on Davis Street, right on the edge between the Embarcadero and Financial District. It's a nice enough place—tidy, tasteful, and slotted in just a few blocks from the waterfront, Exploratorium, Ferry Building, and just across the street from Sydney Walton Square. But for $2,913/month, it's a decidedly conservatively sized offering, so you'll have to weigh its trade offs. No pets.

↑ For a bit more elbow room, a top-floor apartment in this boxy Castro building on 21st Street offers one bedroom and 800 feet for $2,795/month. The building is nearly 60 years old and certainly not the most inspiring design; however, the parquet is nice, the block is lovely, and it comes with views of Twin Peaks. Cats are acceptable here.

↑ Up in Russian Hill we find a similar rectangular design executed with much more taste. Behold this one-bed, 500-square-foot apartment for $2,815/month. This one is equidistant from Russian Hill Park, Maritime Park, and Ghirardelli Square, and the garden does appear to be as cute as advertised. The apartment itself is small but quaint enough, and the granite counter and pedestal sink are a nice touch. No pets though; the landlord even specifies, "Please don't ask because the answer is no." Touchy subject?

↑ We won't mince words—today's Mission listing is just plain odd. But you have to admit it's at least a fascinating kind of weird. From the outside, it's a perfectly nice Victorian on Treat, right next to Garfield Square, with a robin's egg-blue paint job and sunburst. But once inside, the apartment becomes unexpectedly institutional, with ceramic floor tiles that run halfway up the walls, odd proportions, and some rather surprising painting decisions. It's one bedroom for $2,800/month, and again no pets. (Not a lucky day for pets, it seems.)

↑ This studio in Pacific Heights has a few things to account for as well. The decision to add a loft space was a good instinct in and of itself. The execution was...well, we'll generously call it halfhearted. Despite this, the circa 1900 (or so) building still offers real classic charm for $2,799/month at the corner of Broadway and Gough. And yes, brace yourself, they allow pets.