Quick Guide to Finding Affordable San Francisco Rentals
The most affordable San Francisco rentals exist in the Parkside, Western Addition, and West of Twin Peaks neighborhoods. More expensive areas, such as the Financial District, North Beach, and Castro-Upper market remain out of reach for many average earners.
Experts generally urge people to avoid spending more than 28 percent of their income on rent. In an uncertain economy, finding affordable San Francisco rentals that conform to this calculation presents a challenge, but it can be done with proper budgeting. Often the first step for people seeking affordable San Francisco rentals is to assess their monthly income and expenses to get a true sense of their options. For students and young professionals this exercise can set the foundation for a lifetime of careful financial planning.
Tracking income is usually easy, as it only requires a quick look at your paycheck. Understanding your true expenses gets a bit more complicated. The cost of living, especially in a city like San Francisco, includes many hidden expenses. This is where people face the possibility of calculating the available stock of affordable San Francisco rentals for their situation. In addition to the “latte tax,” hidden expenses include internet, phone, and cable service, lunches, entertainment, and other incidentals.
A good rule of thumb is to calculate expenses, and then give yourself some wiggle room by adding about 10 percent to your expected monthly outgo. While doing this may price you out of certain areas, the benefits of searching in areas of affordable San Francisco rentals that meet your situation far outweigh the dangers of renting a place you cannot afford.
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