Living in San Francisco | City Guides | Long Distance USA Movers

What’s Living in San Francisco Like – All the Perks of Life in the Bay Area

If you talked to a few people about living in San Francisco, you might have heard some contradictory info. So, which ones of them are true? We’re here to bust some myths – before you get cross country moving services, let’s see what life in San Francisco is really like.

San Francisco houses
SF can be a great place to call home

This unique hilly and foggy city has set up a reputation in many aspects. One of them is the fact that there are many misconceptions about what’s it like to live in San Francisco. Many people have very strong opinions about it, but most of them are completely opposite. Some may say that the weather here is beautiful, while others say it is foggy all the time. Some think that it is affordable, while others claim that only the millionaires have the answer to how to live in San Francisco after cross country moving. So what is true? We’ll try to give an accurate answer.

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What Is It Like to Live in San Francisco, Bay Area?

If you’re considering moving to San Francisco, and you’re still not sure whether it is a good idea, we might help you with that. This location is perfect for all of those who are work-driven, motivated, and active. SF never sleeps, there’s always something going on and if you love the hustle and bustle of a metropolis, you’re meant to get long-distance moving services and reside here. SF is small compared to other big cities – its area is less than 47 square miles, while LA covers 502 square miles. It is clearly one of the best places to live in California for young adults with all of the exciting things it offers – from amazing views to street performances.

Living in the San Francisco Bay Area Has Its Bad Sides as Well

It’s not all fun and excitement in SF – as every other town, it has its pros and cons. Even though the stuff you might dislike here after moving cross country depends on your preferences, some are unarguable. The first one is ridiculously high rent which makes residing here impossible to afford for the vast majority of people. Another fact that affects this is the gentrification of many areas, causing people to leave their current homes because they can’t afford them anymore. Even though this is one of the richest cities in the US, homelessness is a huge problem. You will see a multimillion-dollar home right next to a tent where a few homeless people sleep.

Living in San Francisco Is Notoriously Expensive, but It Is Doable

You probably know this already, but the cost of living in San Francisco is extremely high – even the highest in the nation according to estimates. It is on par with the cost of living in New York, and it is for $2,000 more expensive than the monthly costs you’d have when living in Los Angeles. If you’re creating a moving out for the first time budget, keep in mind that you’ll need around $1,200 monthly, without the rent. Depending on where you choose to reside after moving state to state, renting prices vary from $2,800 to $6,300 or even more.

What Salary Do You Need to Live Comfortably in San Francisco?

Have you been wondering what kind of salary do you need to live in San Francisco? It has to be said that SF is overpopulated, and so many people move here each year. So, how do they make it? For starters, the minimum wage in SF is $15.59 per hour, while the US average is $7.25. Another fun fact is that the average salary here, after all taxes, is a whopping $8,500.

There are also more commodities in many companies here – some are paying for breakfast and lunch for their employees, and also for the gym and all health-related things. There’s also a chance that your employer will pay for your phone bill if you have to talk to your clients over the phone. With this overview, SF easily becomes the answer to where to live in California. Take a look at how a couple from SF makes it every month without spending too much.

If You Decide to Live in San Francisco, You’ll Have Quite a Few Beautiful Neighborhoods to Choose From

There are so many areas that can claim the name of the best neighborhoods in San Francisco to choose from, and it is crucial that you do because where you reside impacts all other impressions you’ll have when you hire a long-distance moving company and come here. SF is known for its beautiful architecture, so some of the best places to live in San Francisco have gorgeous Victorian-style houses. If you want to fully enjoy your life in SF, try to find a home in some of the following neighborhoods:

  • Mission District – This neighborhood is known for the cultural and art scene, and it’s perfect for singles, young couples, and young families. It does get crowded because of the tourists, but it is very fun to reside here. Plenty of bars, coffee shops, and eateries are very close by, and it’s in the warmer part of SF.
  • Hayes Valley – Another trendy neighborhood here that’s pretty safe and walkable with easy access to everything you might need. Even though SF might not be one of the best cities to raise a family in California because of the costs, this community is suitable for raising children.
  • Noe Valley – Close to Mission and Castro neighborhoods sits this clean, safe neighborhood with a local vibe. It is very well connected via public transportation, but it’s pretty quiet. If you’re looking for a community with plenty of nightclubs working late, you might want to pass this one.

Is It Dangerous to Live in San Francisco?

Even though it has beautiful areas, SF also has a large number of homeless people. There are also drug addicts, so it is not uncommon to find needles on the floor in certain blocks of SF. If you’re moving with dogs and walking them, take a good look at what might be on the ground. Car burglary and window breaking aren’t uncommon, so try not to leave anything inside your car after you parked.

Not even a phone charger, food, or old shoes. Some are suggesting unusual methods of repelling burglars, such as leaving trash inside and not washing the exterior. Ever. Car owners are seen to leave signs on car windows saying “All valuables have been removed.” One of the neighborhoods that have a bad reputation is Tenderloin, so try not to rent there.

Victorian houses in SF built more than 100 years ago
Victorian houses in SF are built to look the same as the row homes in London

This Is, After All, the Place With the Highest Concentration of High Tech Companies

How to get a job in a new city? In SF, easily. It is the home to Silicon Valley, a global center of high tech and innovation. Major social media companies such as Twitter and Facebook are also based here, and so is Uber, Lyft, Visa, Airbnb, Slack, Dropbox, and so many more. It’s the birthplace of all new tech gadgets and innovations, so you’ll see someone on the street wearing some high-tech glasses or a watch that you haven’t seen before in your life. SF also offers employment opportunities in many finance companies and also in the fashion industry. It is also one of the best cities for college grads since it is a perfect destination for anyone coming after studies looking for an entry-level job.

SF panorama
It is nearly impossible not to find a job here

Don’t Expect LA Weather

Did you know that the fog here has its name and Instagram account? Yes, that’s how present Karl, the fog, is. SF is surrounded by water on three out of four sides, so when the hot air from North California rises, it creates a vacuum for the cold ocean air, and it creates a fog. There are, however, almost 260 sunny days, but the weather is pretty changeable. You might not need a jacket in one moment, while in the next it gets very chilly and windy.

There’s also something called “microclimates” which means that not every community in the city has the same weather. Summers are warm and foggy, while the winters are wet, and it can get pretty cold (40 degrees F). If you’re looking for a community with temperatures suitable for swimming in the ocean, you might consider moving to San Diego or some other southern Californian areas. Earthquakes aren’t unusual – minor ones occur regularly.

Golden Gate Bridge in fog
Beautiful views are sometimes blocked by the fog and clouds

Traffic Is Bad but Public Transportation Works Just Fine

Congestions are an everyday thing. Residents spend hours in traffic if they’ve chosen to get auto transport services and to drive. However, there isn’t an exact need to drive here every day. SF is pretty walkable and it is fairly small compared to other cities that offer this kind of lifestyle. Also, parking spots are expensive, so don’t rush when deciding whether you want to learn how to prepare your car for shipping. Public transportation is a good alternative – you will have BART, MUNI, and CalTrain that can take you anywhere you want. Things that make SF one of the cities with the best public transportation are also the famous historic streetcars that are one of the attractions here.

If you wish to avoid wasting time in traffic here’s a tip: use your own two feet. SF is a very walkable city (and it is hilly which makes it an exercise,) so if you can, try to find an apartment close to your work. It will save you a bunch of money and it will also be very convenient.

A hilly street in SF
The walkability score is pretty high in most of the areas, but it is hilly

There Are Endless Things to Do

Beaches, hiking, biking, hanging out in parks, playing or watching sports, trying new food, going to the bars… Whatever comes to your mind, SF probably has it. You want to explore the biggest Chinatown outside of Asia? Come here. You have a unique diet and you’re wondering where can you grab a bite? In one of the best restaurants in San Francisco. This is one of the best cities for vegans and vegetarian-friendly cities in the whole nation. There are so many things to do in San Francisco, but since its nature is so beautiful, we have to emphasize that it is one of the best beach towns to live in and at the same time, one of the best hiking towns.

You can book a ride to the Alcatraz prison where Al Capone was imprisoned, have a walk at the Golden Gate Park, or simply enjoy the sunset at the Golden Gate Bridge. Museums, art galleries, science centers, and other educational venues are also endless. It will take us a whole new article to explain what you can do here, even with current coronavirus pandemics going on. Watch the following video to get a few more ideas:

Is San Francisco a Good Place to Live?

If you didn’t get to learn how to organize important papers and to find the most useful packing strategies for moving here, now is the time to do so. SF is an amazing community to reside in and coming here will bring you so many incredible memories and experiences. Get the cheapest way to move out of state or call a reputable cross country moving company and get long-distance moving services. Professional cross country movers can also offer packing services which will make moving across the country a lot less stressful.

If you’re bringing some valuable and delicate items, ask your long distance movers to provide you with moving insurance so you don’t risk anything. Professional state to state movers will also offer you storage in case you don’t find a perfect spot as soon as you come. After all, it has been a problem here for years, so it is nothing new. Now that you’re well informed, you’re ready to start your SF adventure – don’t let it just stay a science fiction thought.

Amelia Mead

Originally from Chicago, currently everywhere, Amelia is a freelance writer working on bringing all the moving tips to you.

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