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Here’s what the average SF renter had to pay in 2017

Popular rental sites report a year-long average price of more than—gasp—$3,000 per month

Fog shrouding the tops of the highest buildings on the San Francisco waterfront.          By Chris W Anderson

With a new year comes a new slew of rent numbers and an opportunity to consider 2017 as a whole—a year that broke our hearts via rents creeping up bit by bit instead of declining significantly across San Francisco.

What did it take to find a roof in the San Francisco of 2017? Here’s a look back at languor.

  • Abodo reports that rents were highest all year on its platform in December, although the median for a single bedroom in San Francisco did drop 1.52 percent month over month. That’s cold comfort at best since the resulting figure is still $3,253/month. The interesting thing is that, in a separate year-end review, Abodo also provides an average one bedroom price for the entire year of 2017: San Francisco, $3,333, meaning the city’s Abodo average finished just under par compared to the previous months. The smallest of small victories.
  • Zumper consistently reports median rents higher than the rest of its competitors. And this month is no exception as San Francisco takes its customary top spot by averaging $3,400, up 1.5 percent since last year but barely changed from the previous month. Zumper didn’t calculate any averages for the rest of 2017. But a look back at previous months reveals a median of $3,390 and a mean average of $3,382/month.
         By Rhiannon Jones
  • ApartmentList says in December a single bed cost about $2,400. It’s a sign of the times that this sounds like a reassuring number, despite being nearly four times the nationwide median on the same list ($845/month split between Houston, Texas and Anchorage, Alaska). Looking back, the site’s median was $2,424 and the mean average $2,497.25 for 2017, although that doesn’t count the months before the site changed its methodology.
  • And Santa Barbara-based RENTCafe’s most recent figures represent November of 2017, when the price for a single bed in SF was a chart-topping $3,432. For the rest of the year, renting on RENTCafe ran $3,399 for a median priced apartment or $3,395.80/month for the average.
  • For perspective, the median rent for a one-bedroom home on Craigslist over the last seven days was $3,195.

For the record, the Mayor’s Office of Housing clocked the city’s median income for a single person at $80,700 in April of 2017, or $6,725/month before taxes.

In the end, renting has, per usual, averaged out to a rough year for most renters.

         By Mariusz S. Jurgielewicz