San Francisco Real Estate – To Build, Build, Build?
San Francisco’s high housing cost is a tough problem: too many people want to live here.
However, to just build and build and not create a supportive infrastructure just won’t work.
Our traffic problem is horrible. The streets are a mess with potholes and our bus system is inefficient. The sewer system is currently being upgraded but will it be large enough to meet the needs of the burgeoning population? Do we have enough water? What about our power grid?
The city is known for its beauty but its beauty is being eroded away by many new tall ugly structures and as Supervisor David Campos says, just building and building will not be enough to solve the housing problem. Yet, as David Campos and Supervisor Scott Weiner also believe as I do something more can be done: San Francisco real estate policy should focus more on providing housing units for moderate income people. Plus, how about some affordable housing close by in the Peninsula and East Bay? And the truth must be told—most people of moderate means will have to choose to live elsewhere. San Francisco is only 7X7 square miles.
Even the solid middle class have a genuine concern that it is harder and harder to find affordable housing in San Francisco.
And this real estate crunch can be detrimental to the cultural and demographic makeup of San Francisco. Still, the premium that is paid to live here seems justified. Here are a variety of reasons: our very strong economy, our favorable climate, our unique neighborhoods and homes, our spectacular views, our proximity to other desirable areas: the coast, Napa, Lake Tahoe, and Yosemite, our wonderful dining spots and entertainment venues, our good schools, and our plethora of leisure activities—to name a few.
Simply put: this real estate problem is the result of supply versus demand.
Industry new source “First Tuesday Journal” reported that in the past five years, the San Francisco area has added 480,000 private sector jobs and only around 50,000 housing units. If you want to live in SF or any metropolitan city, you will have to pay the price.
Since bottoming out in early 2012, prices in the San Francisco area have risen by 73 percent, compared with 31 percent in America as a whole. Still, it could be worse. The price per square foot for a home in San Francisco is far below that found elsewhere. According SF.Curbed.com, citing a Knight Frank Wealth Report for 2016, a home in Monaco averages $5,464 per square foot. In Hong Kong, it’s $4,651. Fourth place New York City is the most expensive American city on the list, for $3,436 per square foot. Beijing rounds out the top ten at $1,602. In San Francisco today, the price hovers around $920 per square foot. SFGate.com just published a Career Trends study that ranks the 50 cities in America with the highest cost of living. No metro-politan area from Texas is included on the list, so if you are looking for a low cost of living, that state might be your best bet.
Granted the San Francisco real estate market is expensive, but most people think it’s worth it.
San Francisco has always appealed to the best and the brightest from around the world. It doesn’t seem likely that is going to change anytime soon. If you don’t want to pay the high prices, find something else cheaper to live and come visit us anytime. There is always BART!
For more valuable real estate advice and compelling stories you can go to Amazon.com to purchase Paula’s popular new book, Getting the Property SOUL’D – A Breakthrough System for Successful Stress-Free Buying and Selling.
Be aware that any clients’ names have been changed to protect their privacy. Furthermore, Paula Pagano does not accept any liability for the content of any Blogs and this Website or for any actions you take or resultant consequences of actions taken based on the information provided in this communication. Any advice is my opinion after being a 35 year experienced real estate agent in San Francisco.