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: $2,300.
On Francisco Street, $2,300 per month nets a “fabulous Marina studio.” What’s fabulous about it? “New paint, new appliances, [...] and oversized cabinets” on the first floor of an 18-unit building. It also comes with a new kitchen floor, 12-foot high ceilings, hardwood floors, and a lot of talk about the Marina location, blocks from the Presidio, Baker Beach, and the Palace of Fine Arts. Arguably less fabulous is the fact that the ad specifies “no pets allowed’—in fact, it says this three times, each time in all caps. You’ve been warned.
Compare this to the SoMa area around Folsom and Ninth, where nearly the same price—$2,290 per month—rents a “beautiful new micro-studio.” In this case, they really do mean new as the building was just finished at the end of 2018, stocked with tiny homes of which this fifth-floor setup is one of the smallest. The average for the building is roughly 340 square feet, but the ad marks this unit as 219 square feet. The new building promises “expertly crafted design, refined finishes and an intuitive layout.” However small the space, it’s evidently big enough for company, as the offer allows pets on the premises.
New construction buildings hope that SF renters will have outsized enthusiasm for micro-homes, but sometimes a renter simply needs more room. Hence this in-law in the Excelsior, a comparably generous 700 square feet “with one bedroom and private entrance.” The $2,275 per month rent covers the bills and includes “some access to property’s large private backyard with mature lemon trees.” Note that the deal includes a split bath and no pets allowed.
Here’s a renter’s riddle: How can this Tenderloin apartment be dubbed both a studio and a two-bedroom apartment in the same ad? Usually this kind of thing is an error, but in this case it turns out an ambitious landlord is part of the pitch. The home is indeed a studio, but the ad tries to convince readers that it comes “with two large closets big enough [to] be used as bedroom.” (Notably, neither of the alleged bedrooms are featured in the ad). As a studio, this place measures 500 square feet for $2,100 per month, hardwood floors and “all new stainless steel appliances” included. Alas, no pets allowed.
Finally, in the Outer Richmond on 42nd Avenue, $2,300 per month secures a two-bed, one-bath in-law that’s newly remodeled and sports the type of wall-to-wall tile flooring that seems to be a signature of San Francisco in-law units, though it turns into hardwood in the bedrooms. Once again, no pets allowed.
Which rental would you choose?
This poll is closed
Outer Richmond in-law