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What $3,300 rents in San Francisco right now

Five new rentals, from Cow Hollow to the Sunset

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 another person’s townhouse? Today’s price: $3,300.

“Bienvenue to 801 Paris Street” is how the ad for a flat in the Excelsior opens, which is admittedly cute. The three-bed, one-bath upstairs unit has a certain winsomeness to it as well, with the landlords pushing the “decorative fireplace, built-in cabinets/shelving, and wardrobe” as part of the deal for $3,300/month. Potentially intriguing is the fact that this ad takes several opportunities to pitch the location as part of the home’s primary appeal, which is a new one as far as the Excelsior goes, and what a remarkable future it would be if one of San Francisco’s most overlooked locales finally becomes a destination. Modern renters will be more invested in the fact that the lease allows both cats and dogs, though.

The sales pitch for this Outer Sunset house on Santiago Avenue is “beautiful, spacious two bedroom house,” which in this case means “barrel front living room with fireplace,” “formal dining room” and “decorative fireplace,” among other elements. Not directly referenced but still a keeper are the marching columns of arched windows opening up onto that barrel front, which are arguably the most fetching part of the package. It’s a two-bed, one-bath, 1,500-square-foot home, with one car garage included (note that this is a soft-story set up). The $3,295/month price tag is less beautiful than the space itself, as is the ambiguity about whether or not pets are allowed, but that’s the world we live in.

Beauty is the watchword again in this Cow Hollow apartment, dubbed a “beautiful one bedroom, top floor [home] in an Art Deco building,” although the ad calls the offered apartment a studio rather than one bedroom. It’s $3,300/month either way, with the antique lobby, third-floor views of Alcatraz, and crown moldings included, plus the additional incentive of being “smack dab in between the best neighborhoods in San Francisco, Marina and Cow Hollow.” While the argument about the merits of that statement could last all night, it’s certainly not a shabby corner. The only unattractive part: “No pets, no negotiation.”

It’s no secret that in real estate advertising the word “cozy” is usually an attempt to burnish up the fact that a place is small. In this case this one-bedroom, one-bath apartment in Duboce Triangle doesn’t come across with a square footage estimate, so potential renters will have to eyeball it themselves based on the photos; the ad does promise “large living room” as well as “large deck and garden” at least, along with a “shared orchid garden.” The box-beam ceiling and fireplace are welcome touches. And the ad says the place allows all pets, which is surely the most aesthetically pleasing choice of all. The deal: $3,300/month.

Finally, a studio at Solaire, the newly minted condo high-rise located in what we’re grudgingly referring to as the East Cut these days, is also running $3,295/month, billing itself as “part of progress, part of the changing tides” in the neighborhood. Change in this case comes in the form of quartz counters and concierge service, along with yet another set of generous allowances for pets.


Which rental would you choose?

This poll is closed

  • 18%
    Excelsior flat
    (46 votes)
  • 26%
    Sunset house
    (67 votes)
  • 16%
    Cow Hollow apartment
    (41 votes)
  • 21%
    Duboce Triangle apartment
    (55 votes)
  • 17%
    SoMa condo
    (45 votes)
254 votes total Vote Now