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San Francisco Living Costs: What You Need to Know

July 26, 2021
If you don't live or you haven't been to San Francisco, it might surprise you to discover that it's actually quite expensive to live here. It might not have the same bustle as New York, the same glamour as Los Angeles, the same paradise vibe as Miami, or the same prestige as Washington D.C., but San Francisco still has a lot going for it. It's a colorful city that features a diverse population and a liberated spirit that's renowned all over the world. So why wouldn't it be expensive to live here?

San Francisco Living Costs: What You Need to Know


Costs of Renting in San Francisco

As far as rent is concerned, this is one of the most expensive living costs in San Francisco. The monthly rental fee of a one-bedroom apartment in the center of the Bay Area city costs around $2,800.00 to $4,200.00. For a three-bedroom place in the same location, that range goes up, becoming $5,100.00 to $9,000.00. In fact, even apartments along the outskirts of San Francisco cost a lot. About $2,100.00 to $3,500.00 for a one-bedroom and $3,800.00 to $6,000.00 for a three-bedroom. With these prices, you'd need a roommate to share the rent with you! 


Costs of Buying Property in San Francisco

Of course, if renting alone costs you a lot of money, buying a property in San Francisco will probably wipe out your life's savings. You've probably seen those neo-classical houses along the hills of the city, right? Though they may not seem like it, those are probably some of the most expensive properties in the Bay Area. Just one square meter for a place in the heart of San Francisco already has a price range of $10,763.91 to $21,527.82! While for a place outside the city center, it's around $8,611.13 to $13,993.08 per square meter. That's a lot of money! 


San Francisco Living Costs: What You Need to Know


Utilities Costs

Even the utilities costs in San Francisco are comparatively more expensive than in other cities. Though, as a whole, it's probably one of the least expensive costs in the city itself. Your basic bills for electricity, water, heating, garbage disposal, and the like will, more or less, total to a minimum of $90.00 and a maximum of $262.73. This depends, of course, on where you live and how you live, meaning how long you put the lights on, how long you open the faucet for, and the like. At least getting WiFi for your place will only cost you around $50.00 to $100.00 a month. 


Food Costs

If there's one thing worth investing your money in San Francisco, it's food. Why? Because you can already get a lot for a little over $100.00. Generally speaking, a trip to the supermarket can already cost you a median total price of $117.20. This isn't bad considering that your total cost for utilities bills is already above $150.00 and your rent costs thousands per month. With this $117.20, you've already paid for a liter of milk, a kilogram each of various fruits, vegetables, and meats, as well as a dozen eggs and a few bottles of beers. 


San Francisco Living Costs: What You Need to Know


Dining Costs

Dining can also be an inexpensive endeavor along as you stay within the mid-range class of restaurants and culinary hotspots. While San Francisco does have its fair share of fine-dining establishments, it's more known for quirky places where the food isn't expensive and the time you spend with friends is priceless. In one of these places, a three-course meal with a date can cost you only around $60.00 to $150.00. And if you're all alone, a solo meal for yourself won't cost more than $30.00 on average. Additionally, solo orders of various beverages often won't reach the $20.00 mark. 


Transportation Costs

San Francisco's public transport systems make it that people don't have to spend a lot of money to travel around the city. In fact, a monthly pass will only cost around $80.00 to $98.00, and this will give you unlimited access to the various efficient modes of transportation in the city. The most expensive one-way ticket will only cost you $3.25, meaning a back-and-forth trip will only cost $6.50 at most. Though, like in most cities in California, it's better to invest in your own vehicle instead. The cheapest you have to pay is $19,396.00 and the most expensive is $30,000.00. 


San Francisco Living Costs: What You Need to Know


Leisure Costs

Who knew that going to the gym in San Francisco is a bit more expensive than in other cities. Here, a premium membership fee at a swanky gym or fitness club can cost up to $175.00 while the cheapest fee is $90.00. While in other cities, $90.00 can already give you the same premium membership at a nice gym. Even going to the movies is more expensive than in other cities. More often than not, the most expensive a movie ticket can cost in another city is $12.00. Here in San Francisco, the highest-priced movie ticket is $18.00. 


Clothing Costs

Since movie tickets and gym memberships can be more expensive in San Francisco than in other cities, is it a surprise at all that shopping for clothes can also cost more in this city? Well, it sort of is, considering that the Bay Area city isn't exactly a fashion capital. At least, not in the same level as New York or Los Angeles. Still, it seems clothes are very much in-demand in San Francisco if not, it won't cost around $60.10 for a pair of jeans, $89.89 for a pair of new trainers, and $147.06 for a pair fo formal shoes. 


Childcare and Education Costs

Of course, the most expensive cost in San Francisco is for your kid's education. The costs for such are pretty pricey no matter what city you're in, but of course, here, the prices are a bit higher than in other cities. The range for the tuition fee for enrolling your kid in a private or international school ranges from $1,500.00 to $3,000.00. While for primary school, the cheapest would go for $25,000.00 a term while the most expensive can go as high as $39,000.00. Fortunately, public schools are free in San Francisco. 


San Francisco Living Costs: What You Need to Know


San Francisco is one of the most fun and extremely enjoyable cities in the USA. So it's no wonder that living here is pretty expensive. You'll have to spend a lot in order to sustain a lifestyle in this beautiful and welcoming city. 

Investing in a San Francisco luxury rental will make all the other high costs in the city truly worth it. It's a smart investment when you go live in the Bay Area city!



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