Let’s face it moving anywhere is a big adjustment even if it means across the hall or down the street. Take it from a well seasoned Gypsy-current count is 9 diff. cities, 4 diff. states, 3 diff. countries and 19 diff. homes all after the age of 5 (before this I don’t remember but my baby pictures are in Virginia Beach, so I’m thinking I lived there as well/you’d think I was an orphan right?). Conclusion, moving sucks no matter how many times or where too. This past spring I made the big leap after a decade in the Midwest and moved to San Francisco, there are many reasons why, however for now I will break it down and list out the most important things to know if you’re thinking of doing the same:
- When people say the west coast is expensive, it’s their way of saying: “if your thinking about it, get your S^%$ together because you’ll be making a couple of sacrifices.”
- Sacrifice #1, say goodbye to all that sq. footage, get use to the idea that 500sq. ft is plenty of space, and paying $1,600-3,000 a month is a bargain.
- Sacrifice #2, parting with all your furniture. Again you will not be able to fit all that junk, only keep your mid-century modern furniture, for this in San Francisco is worth its weight in gold.
- Starbucks no more! The city of San Francisco is known for being a great supporter of local businesses, although you can find franchises like Chipotle and Starbucks around the tourist hotspots, you can def do better than this.
- If you are offended easily by Nudity, Sex Jokes, Marijuana, Homosexuality and people being straight forward and honest, San Francisco is definitely not the city for you. Basically your shock value goes way down after 3 days in SF.
- If you’re a Germaphobe, scared of public transportation and fear parallel parking, again San Francisco is not for you.
- The wheels of your car when parked uphill go towards the street; the wheels when parked downhill go towards the curb.
- Architects (the ones who people think draw pretty pictures): Unlicensed with 0-4yrs, make between 49,000-70,000K. Software Engineers make 80,000-130,000K.
- Unlike people’s ideal of California. San Francisco is a city of Micro Climates the average temperature year round ranges from mid 40’s to high 60’s. They have an Indian summer which falls in Sept-Oct and have misty rain during the winter months. The Beach is always cold and the only crazy mammals to swim in it are surfers in dry suits and sea lions.
- San Francisco is a city of renters and rent control, because of this finding a place to live is a bit tricky and very competitive, it takes patience and being a tad aggressive. To rent an apartment in San Francisco you need: a perfect credit score, two letters of recommendations from previous landlords, a pay stub or job offer letter proving you make 3 times as much rent per month, print all, place in manila folder along with a check for first and last months rent and get ready to ride the crazy apartment hunting scene. However if you have 20% of 600K-1.0 million dollars you will have no problem in finding a nice condo or house in the outer neighborhoods of SF.
I hope you didn't find any of the above comments a deterrent because the truth of the matter is San Francisco is expensive for a reason, it holds some of the country’s most prized scenery and the smartest and most innovative professionals in the country. In conclusion if you visit you’ll understand why we crazy butts pay so much for rent. =)