Welcome to City-Data.com Forum!
U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > California > San Francisco - Oakland
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
Old 09-17-2011, 08:37 PM
 
Location: San Francisco
2 posts, read 46,881 times
Reputation: 10

Advertisements

My husband and I live in San Francisco (Pacific Heights), but are looking at other housing options. We pay $2,000/mo for a large one-bedroom apartment without parking. My work is 2 blocks away. He has a 10 minute commute by bus to North Beach. Other factors are: we have 2 small dogs, 1 car that is currently parked on the street (at times difficult), I have overnight call once a week (but can come home at night as long as I can be back at the hospital within 45 minutes by car or transit), and he frequently works until 11pm. We're in our late 20s, love good food, and aren't into partying/nightlife.

Where we currently live is a pretty ideal location, quiet and safe, but we're trying to find a way to cut down on expenses, and would love to be able to drastically decrease our rent - preferably to $1500 or less for a one-bedroom. Any ideas on areas that are safe, inexpensive, near BART (as we only have one car), and a 45 minute or less commute would be greatly appreciated. Or if you think it makes more sense to stay where we are now, given the costs of commuting and time, your opinion is also helpful.

So far I've been looking at Daly City and Oakland, but I'm sure there are other great places I haven't considered.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 09-17-2011, 08:51 PM
 
Location: South Korea
5,242 posts, read 13,076,457 times
Reputation: 2958
a) BART only runs until around 12:30am or so, so keep that in mind, plus after around 8pm the trains don't run very often, maybe every 20 minutes or so. Driving to/from the East Bay at night is pretty fast (but the tolls add up) but if you need to take public transit back to the East Bay (or Daly City) after 11pm it would be inconvenient.

b) BART is expensive, riding it to and from North Oakland to downtown SF alone for 20 days a month (working 5 days a week) is $140 a month so that eats into your rental savings. There's no monthly pass like with Muni unless you only ride it within SF and get a monthly Muni+BART pass.

c) BART is pretty quick once you get on the train but getting from the BART stations to anywhere in SF on public transit is a pain in the butt because of how pokey Muni is and how badly its transit lines are set up, plus it costs you that much more to ride it on top of your BART expenses.

d) that said, you can get a 1br for around $1000-1200 in the nice parts of Oakland. I live in Rockridge and it's pretty easy to park in, the areas around Lake Merritt are cheaper but I think harder to park on the street in.

What I would probably recommend is looking for a cheaper place in SF. Pacific Heights is pretty expensive. You could probably find a 1br for around $1600-1800 pretty much anywhere in the city, it's not as big of a savings in rent as you'd get if you moved to Oakland but the shorter commutes and lower commuting expenses and not being tied down by the limited BART schedule I think makes SF a better option. Oakland and the East Bay are great places to live but are really only best if you work near downtown SF and don't have to work really late. Daly City is cheaper than SF but not by a lot and it's so damn foggy.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-17-2011, 09:03 PM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
28,226 posts, read 36,864,430 times
Reputation: 28563
Oakland is an easy choice. Try Rockridge for BART proximity and street parking availability. 1 bedrooms are harder to find, but you might find a house to rent as well! My friend is renting a cute 2 bedroom craftsman for I think $1650 (renovated, garage, hot tub, washer and dryer). BART + Bus/walking to North Beach would take about 40 minutes. If you don't mind a slightly further route to BART (within about 1 mile) you can also consider Grand Lake/Adam's Point or Piedmont Ave areas. They all have bus access to SF, with a bus ride of 25 minutes or less (generally).

I live near Piedmont Ave (a bit further from BART, 1.25mi) and 1 bedrooms on my street are generally around 1050, 2 bedrooms are about 1200-1350. Most places include a parking space free. Generally in the area, parking adds $60/mo (typically in the building). Street parking isn't plentiful, but it is definitely possible. You wouldn't need to drive around for 30 minutes. You might need to look on an adjacent block. Lots of dogs in the area, and you can use the Rose Garden or Glen Echo Park for some green space. Or the dog park in Piedmont, a few more blocks away. If I don't drive to BART, I take the bus (1 block away) and it is 10 minutes or less to MacArthur BART. This bus runs until about 12:30am -- the 57. You can also hop on the 11 and get to the 19th St BART station in the same time frame.

In between Rockridge and Piedmont Ave is Temescal. This is closer to BART than Piedmont Ave or Adams Point, but a little less safe. (I think comparable to Lower Pac Heights in terms of crime)

Adam's Point is below Piedmont Ave area and closer to downtown Oakland. Not as well served by transit and harder to find street parking.

Rockridge/Temescal/Adams Point/Piedmont Ave are all very comparable in transit time to SF, driving time to SF and safety. The neighborhoods have different vibes, but all have good access to good restaurants, grocery stores, drug stores, basic services, whole foods, trader joes, and farmers markets.

Berkeley is generally overpriced. There is lots of competition with students and tons of traffic if you drive into SF. If you are 3 miles from the Toll Plaza on 80 or 3 miles from the Toll Plaza on 580, 580 is at least 10 minutes faster when there is traffic. And 5-7 minutes faster on a regular day.

Going further out into Lamorinda won't save you much and will add time to your commute. These areas are also much older/full of families.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-21-2011, 10:55 PM
 
Location: San Francisco
2 posts, read 46,881 times
Reputation: 10
Thank you both for your replies - I appreciate the input! I guess I'll just keep checking padmapper regularly to see if anything good pops up in other parts of SF, Rockridge or Berkeley.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-22-2011, 07:49 AM
 
Location: Sierra Vista, AZ
17,531 posts, read 24,691,987 times
Reputation: 9980
Get on BART heading away from the city
Ride to the end of the line
Get off and look for FOR SALE Signs
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 09-22-2011, 02:48 PM
 
3,098 posts, read 3,783,876 times
Reputation: 2580
the jack london square area may be an option
there is a free shuttle from Jls to i believe 3 bart stations

lakeshore apartment district may also be a reasonable walk to bart.

anybody have any comments on the B shuttle
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-11-2014, 12:47 PM
 
Location: Glen Cove-Vallejo, CA
1 posts, read 20,331 times
Reputation: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr.G View Post
My husband and I live in San Francisco (Pacific Heights), but are looking at other housing options. We pay $2,000/mo for a large one-bedroom apartment without parking. My work is 2 blocks away. He has a 10 minute commute by bus to North Beach. Other factors are: we have 2 small dogs, 1 car that is currently parked on the street (at times difficult), I have overnight call once a week (but can come home at night as long as I can be back at the hospital within 45 minutes by car or transit), and he frequently works until 11pm. We're in our late 20s, love good food, and aren't into partying/nightlife.

Where we currently live is a pretty ideal location, quiet and safe, but we're trying to find a way to cut down on expenses, and would love to be able to drastically decrease our rent - preferably to $1500 or less for a one-bedroom. Any ideas on areas that are safe, inexpensive, near BART (as we only have one car), and a 45 minute or less commute would be greatly appreciated. Or if you think it makes more sense to stay where we are now, given the costs of commuting and time, your opinion is also helpful.

So far I've been looking at Daly City and Oakland, but I'm sure there are other great places I haven't considered.
I can really relate to this situation. I lived in Fairfield Ca when I got a great job in San Francisco. I used carpool (casual) from the park and ride station by the bus terminal or drive to park n ride in Vallejo Ca. I was commuting 3 hours per day and it was wiping me out. I no longer had time to exercise, go to church or enjoy my friends. So I rented a small studio in Lower Pac Heights and kept my 2 bedroom apt in Fairfield where my 3 pets lived. I came home Tues, Thursday and was home for the weekends. This worked but was not always ideal. The studio really was too small and I gave up both apts to find a lovely home in Glen Cove in Vallejo and began driving in daily. I simply get up an hour earlier and came to work at 7 am rather than 8 and there was little traffic and left either earlier or later to avoid commute traffic on the way home. I found going through Richmond-San Rafael bridge was pleasant on the way despite the extra cost. Now I do find I am tired by Thursday and wiped out Friday. I too am wondering where should I live to make my commute easier. I was thinking of Marin. I am paying $1600 now and the commute is about 45 minutes with no traffic in going 80 and about 1 hour to 1.5 hours home using 101 - Richmond Bridge to 80.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-11-2014, 01:50 PM
 
Location: California
37,131 posts, read 42,200,354 times
Reputation: 35012
I'd stay put if you can deal with the parking issue. Consider if your love for good food is costing you money and then stop it if you must, until you are in a better place financially.

Also, and I hate to say this, pets are $$ and don't get why people starting out or trying to save money for something jump into pet ownership the minute they get out on their own but whatever. I only take this personally because when I have always had cats but when I moved out on my own, and before I bought my first home, I did without. I felt it was the responsible thing do to no matter how much I wanted a cat. But what's done is done. I have this argument with my own adult kids and so does every other 50+ parent I know. You know how grandparents sometimes end up taking care of their grandkids when the parents can't do it? It's like that with pets too sometimes....hahaha. I have one of those cats.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-11-2014, 01:58 PM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
2,201 posts, read 3,358,753 times
Reputation: 2844
This thread is from 2011!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 01-11-2014, 02:23 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,813 posts, read 32,491,098 times
Reputation: 38575
Quote:
Originally Posted by starteam144 View Post
I can really relate to this situation. I lived in Fairfield Ca when I got a great job in San Francisco. I used carpool (casual) from the park and ride station by the bus terminal or drive to park n ride in Vallejo Ca. I was commuting 3 hours per day and it was wiping me out. I no longer had time to exercise, go to church or enjoy my friends. So I rented a small studio in Lower Pac Heights and kept my 2 bedroom apt in Fairfield where my 3 pets lived. I came home Tues, Thursday and was home for the weekends. This worked but was not always ideal. The studio really was too small and I gave up both apts to find a lovely home in Glen Cove in Vallejo and began driving in daily. I simply get up an hour earlier and came to work at 7 am rather than 8 and there was little traffic and left either earlier or later to avoid commute traffic on the way home. I found going through Richmond-San Rafael bridge was pleasant on the way despite the extra cost. Now I do find I am tired by Thursday and wiped out Friday. I too am wondering where should I live to make my commute easier. I was thinking of Marin. I am paying $1600 now and the commute is about 45 minutes with no traffic in going 80 and about 1 hour to 1.5 hours home using 101 - Richmond Bridge to 80.
What if we took what you are spending now on commuting and add it to your house payment. Would $2000/month be about right? Then, what home price can you afford? My daughter bought a home in the Millsmont area of Oakland a couple years ago for $315,000, and her mortgage payments are about $2,000.

So, just using this amount as a baseline, I am thinking you could find something in Oakland, or what about Concord?

I"m thinking Marin will be too pricy.

I really like Redfin as a website to look at available homes. Here's a search for Oakland with max $325,000:

Real Estate Search | Redfin

Here's Concord:

Real Estate Search | Redfin

What is the possibility of taking the ferry from SF to Vallejo? Would that make your commute any better? More pleasant? Sounds like you like your home there. But, commuting really is tiring.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:


Settings
X
Data:
Loading data...
Based on 2000-2020 data
Loading data...

123
Hide US histogram


Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > U.S. Forums > California > San Francisco - Oakland
Similar Threads

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2024, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Contact Us - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37 - Top