Welcome to Curbed Comparisons, a regular column exploring what you can rent for a set dollar amount in different neighborhoods. Is one person’s studio is another person’s townhouse? Today’s price: $2,200.
↑ Sometimes a home comes along that’s so striking that there’s only one word for it: “serenitiful.” All right, that’s not a word, but that didn’t stop this ad for a Nob Hill studio from giving it a spin, advertising the $2,195/month redoubt as the asset of an “absolutely gorgeous building” on California Street. While the apartment itself is nice, but entirely typical of the neighborhood, and the facade of the three-story structure is nothing special, the photos reveal common areas with detailed touches, including a curved staircase. As for pets—cats are fine, but no dogs. Alas.
↑ This competing apartment in Cole Valley for $2,200/month saves most of the knockout material for the Victorian exterior, which is only slightly mired by the obstructive fire escape hanging off the front. But fire safety is important, so what’s to be done? The one-bed, one-bath unit is no slouch itself; the only real standout being the old fireplace, which does not appear to be functioning but also hasn’t been whitewashed over, leaving the tale of its weathered bricks on display. There’s no mention of pets with this one.
↑ And speaking of old bricks, this furnished one-bath Hayes Valley studio has them in spades, and apparently it’s lucky they’ve lasted because most everything else is new, as the ad claims “the apartment was completely gutted and renovated” at the start of the year. “Gutted” is usually a term you want to steer clear of when trying to appear appealing, but if renters go in for the new place, then all’s well that ends well. They’re going to have to go in for $2,195/month. The ad also neglects to bring up the pet policy.
↑ If renters are looking for something that has lasted the test of time, there’s always the case of this Lower Nob Hill studio at 735 Taylor, which has been offering the same studio apartment, with proportions so snug that a bed leaves renters sleeping in the kitchen, for years. Rent is $2,095/month. Of course, that oft-used and distinctive studio image, with the sink tile backsplash a few feet from the sleeping area, is probably offered as a “typical unit” photo rather than the specific home on offer, but at least it’s consistent. This building also happily allows pets on the premises provided they come with an extra $75/month.
↑ And finally, if the smaller proportions downtown don't seem sufficiently attractive for the scratch, moving west to the Richmond opens up a one-bed, one-bath apartment (circa 1919) on 39th Avenue for $2,200/month. It comes with a fenced yard, French doors, and extra storage space (but no garage). No pets allowed.
Which rental would you choose?
This poll is closed
Nob Hill studio
Cole Valley apartment
Hayes Valley studio
Lower Nob Hill studio