San Francisco Real Estate Markets
The San Francisco real estate market is still one of the hottest on the planet. Driven by mountains of venture capital, tech startups and IPOs, this California metro area is one of the most desirable to live and work in, and which can demand some of the highest price tags in the world.
San Francisco is the second most populated city in America. As a primary statistical area (PSA), it has the highest GDP per capita in the USA. Among companies with headquarters here today are Dropbox, Mozilla, Fitbit, Airbnb, Wikimedia, Craigslist, Yelp and Uber.
The city was officially founded in 1776, and named after St. Francis. Though archaeological evidence points to inhibition going back to at least 3,000 BC. It was a big California gold rush town, and much of that wealth seems to have stayed.
Today’s architecture runs from the historic sites of Alcatraz and the Golden Gate bridge to traditional mission styles and hyper modern glass offices and hotels.
The San Francisco real estate market has long been one of the most expensive in the world, and especially within the Americas. Yet, it continues to attract countless entrepreneurs hoping to become as famous as the aspiring actors who move to LA to wait tables each year. It is a top choice for international investors of all levels, and a favorite home of those in the VC and business world.
The San Francisco Housing Market
In addition to having some of the priciest commercial property space, residential San Francisco real estate prices are also notoriously high. So much so that the city has also become synonymous with the new American affordability crisis and homelessness.
This is a situation which has been compounded by the new trend in Airbnb and short term rentals. In 2018, analysts found that it would take earning over $60 an hour to be able to afford a modest 2 bedroom apartment here, or in excess of $125k per year. Compared to just $22 an hour nationally.
Smart Asset data proclaims San Francisco is by far the most expensive place to rent in America, and almost twice as pricey as Los Angeles. In fact, everything cost a lot more, from milk to rice and healthcare. While the top 50% of Facebook employees may be able to afford to live here, those working for Intel, Tesla and PayPal don’t make near enough to be able to afford housing in the city according to Curbed.
Many local workers are living out of their cars, with families sharing RVs, as well as all of those on the streets.
This pressure began a correction in 2016 and 2017 which saw rental prices fall almost $400 per month. A trend which many feared would topple housing prices and the performance of investment properties, and trigger a new housing and financial crisis. However, the latest data shows that may have slowed, if not turned around by the end of 2018.
San Francisco House Prices
The median home price in San Francisco, CA according to Zillow is now $1,381,700. That’s up almost 7% over the past 12 months. With expectations of another 6.4% growth in local home values through 2019.
This change of fortunes continues to make the city a very hot sellers market, with plenty of demand and not enough inventory. The average days on market for a home as of October 2018 was just 37 days.
Only 10.5% of local house listings show a price cut. Average rental rates appear to be slightly ticking up again to $4,194 per month.
Valuing San Francisco Home Prices
If you are thinking about buying or selling a home here, it can be very tempting to be caught up in bidding wars and end up paying far over the asking price. Though sellers also need to keep an eye on the overall US housing market and time exits well before a new correction deepens.
The most obvious way to evaluate a fair price for a property is using the recent sales prices of comparable homes. This can be done with an appraisal once a contract has been signed. Or by using a free home value tool in advance to get an estimate of home values.
As property styles and locations can vary quite widely here, many may also choose to estimate value and fair prices by looking at houses by sf. The average San Francisco home price by square foot is $1,035.
This may be significantly lower for those willing to move to the surrounding areas of San Jose, Fremont and Oakland, CA.
Finding San Francisco Homes for Sale
Finding and securing a contract on a home for sale in San Francisco is obviously still quite challenging. Things move so fast that many online house listings may be gone before you call. In hot markets like this it is also common for sellers and their real estate agents to hold house listings offline privately as ‘pocket listings’. You’ll need a relationship with a fantastic local Realtor in order to find them, and make an offer that has a chance of being accepted.
Still, that doesn’t mean there aren’t deals and value to be found. These four local San Francisco real estate agents have over 9 years of experience, and provide buyers and sellers substantial savings when listing and making offers on properties here. Sellers can expect to save an average of over $20,000 in real estate commissions when using this free service provided by UpNest.
Despite the rumors, San Francisco home prices are still going strong. Rents are still high. The market is very competitive. Yet, both buyers and sellers can save big and find value by using smart new services like UpNest to save thousands on their next real estate transaction.
Find a Top 5% Realtor for Free with UpNest today!
Guaranteed to Save Thousands. Free, No Obligation Service.
Join UpNest as a Top Realtor and compete with the best of the best!
Use this free home value estimator to find out the value of your home from multiple sources: Home Value Estimator