Renting SUCKS in the bay, but I will say we complain too much. We live here knowing it sucks. The ridiculous salaries, the opportunity to learn from the best and the luxury of being surrounded by so many beautiful people, is a far cry from horrible and I honestly feel like I'm living in the future.
I've never been around so many smart, creatively insane people in my entire life- it's really inspiring. I contest unaffordable rent is well worth it to live among some of the most influential and unique people in the world. Although, right now, at this exact moment, it's hard for me to be fair and stick to my original argument.
Back to rent, here's why it sucks:
Let's first point out the obvious, 894324039824032 million people live in this area. Okay, that was a stretch. Google says 7 million, with ~850,000 in the 47.35 mi² of land we call San Francisco. The 7 million includes Sonoma, Napa and Salano counties so there's room for protest..but still, things are limited.
There are many different walks of life here. Oddly enough, this is the number one reason why I moved 2,500 miles away, but it does narrow down the housing options. For instance, I don't want to be involved in a 50 Shades of Grey situation, nor is it ideal to live in a backyard. For some this works, for me it doesn't.
People live in garages, rent out their car or even a closet— "cozy" is the warning sign here. Also, it's acceptable to rent out an apartment without a kitchen. Sometimes they are nice and have a microwave available for you. "Light cooking privileges" really makes me cringe. I'm not going to pay an insane amount of money for a place I can't make dinner in. You are a terrible human being and should be ashamed of yourself.
Renting also tends to ruin your romantic life, many places have "no overnight guests" policies.
Oh, and sorry meat eaters, plenty of living situations have strictly vegan or vegetarian kitchens and very specific guidelines for usage.
Case in point:
It's expensive. By expensive, I mean finding a room with multiple roommates, for less than 1,500 dollars/month is tough- if you want to live in a somewhat comfortable, non-sublet situation. Typically washer/dryer are not included and dishwashers are considered a luxury. I don't know why, but the in-unit w/d thing really twisted the dagger for me. Coming from the Midwest, I've always known this to be a pretty standard feature. I'm ignorant.
As I mentioned before, there is stiff competition. You go to a showing only to find 30 people there with the application filled out, cash in hand and references all set to go. How the hell are you supposed to be a shining unicorn among a sea of thirsty apartment hunters all with amazing jobs, an 830 credit score and can move in today?! You better bring your bag of tricks.
In closing, I've gathered some of the more entertaining listings I've found throughout my hunt to leave you with. Enjoy.
AMAZING! Only 600 dollars to live in a 39 x 74in box..in a garage.
Even if you live outside on a patio, you still can't have any overnight guests.
Ha! $725 to live in ONE room with THREE people.
Little long, but definitely worth reading the whole way through. Why do you need a good credit score live in a tent.. on a plot of land that's free?
Super convenient if you're looking for a boyfriend and a place to live.
What a steal! 1,200 dollars for a living room? Definitely the BEST price I've seen.
Dying -- "Nothing sexual would be expected at all, although it would be great if the chemistry is there and also if we shower together in order to save money and water"