According to new data from the rental startup Zumper, median rents in San Francisco fell slightly. (Zumper)
According to new data from the rental startup Zumper, median rents in San Francisco fell slightly over the past two months. (Zumper)

There is some early evidence that rents in San Francisco, which have generated widespread concern in recent years, might finally be leveling off.

According to data gathered by the rental startup Zumper, median rents for one- and two-bedroom apartments actually fell slightly between May and July.

The company, which says it carries the “vast majority” of listings in the city, calculates the median one-bedroom rent at $2,695 in July (down from $2,764 in May). The median rent for a two-bedroom also dipped slightly, from $4,000 to $3,950 over that two-month period.

The median is the numerical value separating the higher half of a data set from the lower half.

For the first time this year, according to the data, Russian Hill has edged out South Beach as the most expensive neighborhood in San Francisco for a one-bedroom apartment.

As of July, the median price for a one-bedroom in Russian Hill is $3,500, which is $50 more than a similar unit costs in South Beach.

While rents fell slightly for the city overall, Zumper co-founder and COO Taylor Glass-Moore says rents in northern parts of the city like Pacific Heights and Russian Hill are “likely due to people paying premiums for summer rentals during America’s Cup. I’d expect the prices in those areas to drop a bit once the race is over.”

“Zumper has the vast majority of (rental) data in San Francisco,” says co-founder & CEO Anthemos Georgiades, “and it’s all posted to us directly by landlords and brokers so we’re confident in the data.”

Georgiades cautions that when studying its data, people should know that ”these are for available units listed onto market this month, and not a reflection of what some people may be historically paying in these neighborhoods.”

He says the company uses median rents ”to discount outlier listings and so as to not over/understate the real prices.”

At the other end of the spectrum from Russian Hill and South Beach, according to Zumper, the most affordable neighborhoods to find a one-bedroom in the city include the Outer Richmond ($1,835), the  Outer Sunset ($1,950), the Outer Mission/ Excelsior ($1,975) and  the Bayview ($1,995).



  • Andrew C.

    Glad to see KQED tracking rents in SF on a more regular basis. This info is very useful. Keep it up! Now if only we could get the City to add more housing inventory…

  • Rick R.

    interesting to see Russian Hill beat South Beach by $50. thanks for the data!

  • Rick R.

    interesting that Russian Hill edged out South Beach. thanks for the data.

  • Walter Hoss

    How does this info stack up against other sites that are tracking rental pirces like Trulia, Zillow, Kwelia and others? Your link in the story “posted to us directly” goes to another post on your blog but not one about rentals or Zumper–I think it might be wrong.


David Weir

David Weir is KQED's senior editor for digital news.  He previously worked at Rolling Stone, Salon, Wired Digital, Excite@Home, Mother Jones, and as a co-founder and executive director of the Center for Investigative Reporting.

Over the past 40 years, he and his teams have won dozens of awards, including a National Magazine Award, an IRE Award and a Webby. He has authored or co-authored four books, including (with Mark Schapiro) Circle of Poison.

He has a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Michigan, and has taught journalism at the University of California at Berkeley, Stanford and San Francisco State.

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