San Francisco rent prices are falling

Demand is down as tech employees find cheaper places to live in a remote work world

National Weekend Edition /
Dec.December 13, 2020 02:00 PM
Prices for studio and one-bedroom apartments in San Francisco are down 35% and 27% respectively. (Unsplash)

Prices for studio and one-bedroom apartments in San Francisco are down 35% and 27% respectively. (Unsplash)

 

San Francisco rent prices may still be too damn high, but they’re falling fast.

The median rent for a studio apartment was down 35 percent to $2,100 in November year-over-year, according to Realtor.com data as cited by Bloommberg. One-bedroom units are down 27 percent over that period, to $2,716.

The drop is significant even from earlier this year. The median rent for a studio in September was $2,285 — $185 more than last month.

Studio rents have been falling on a year-over-year basis since March when the coronavirus pandemic forced lockdowns in San Francisco and many other parts of the country. It took until May for rents to begin falling for one- and two-bedroom units.

Rents are falling in many major cities across the country, but the drop is most pronounced in San Francisco, and it’s notable considering the city’s notoriously high rents.

Realtor.com chief economist Danielle Hale said she expects rents to recover, but that will depend on how quickly people return to their offices.

Tech “companies have been among the most flexible with allowing people to work remotely and a lot of workers are taking advantage of that,” she said.

Office vacancy in the third quarter hit 14.1 percent, nearly three times what it was a year prior and the highest percentage since 2011.

[Bloomberg] — Dennis Lynch


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