The United States of America is home to various famous metropolitan cities, well known for the opportunities that they provide in terms of education and career. One of the most popular urban centres is the city of San Francisco, California.

Living in San Francisco
Photo by Thomas Haas on Unsplash

Pros and Cons of Living in San Francisco

The city, with its increasing per capita income every passing year and its rich blend of cultures from various parts of the world, has grown to become the financial and cultural centre of Northern California.

History of San Francisco

The early inhabitants of San Francisco were Native Americans and the city was discovered by Spanish explorers led by Portola. The Spanish explorers were the first to produce a map of the San Francisco region.

In 1821, Mexico broke away from Spain along with California and later in 1846, the region was annexed by the United States. The discovery of gold in the California foothills led to a boost in the population as a result of immigration and soon, the region was one of the main ports for gold trade.

This period of time was rightly named the gold rush. During the 19th and 20th century, the steadily developing region faced widespread fire, earthquake and a plague outbreak but it still rose from the ashes to become the multicultural, densely populated metropolitan city that it is today.

Pros of Living in San Francisco

There must be a reason for San Francisco being the second most populated city in the United States. Let’s get into it!

1. Plenty of Opportunities

At the peak of its technological development with major companies like Google, Netflix and Apple situated in the city area, San Francisco provides never-ending job opportunities. Other sectors like healthcare and hospitality are also booming.
With enough resources, creating a startup here is also a pretty good idea.

2. Transportation Services

Being a resident of San Francisco does not require you to buy a car as the public transportation system allows you to access any part of the city with ease and at a quite affordable rate.
Uber and Lyft are also some great options if you want to avoid public transport.

3. A Diverse City

The city is known to be welcoming to everybody regardless of their race, religion, gender etc. The Hispanic culture of the city is quite evident in the Mission district while the Asian, mainly Chinese culture is seen in the Chinatown area, which is also the oldest in the US.
The city is also a pretty loud supporter of the LGBTQ community which is shown in the way the city organises pride parades and events.

4. Free your Creative Spirit

To please the aesthete in you, the city has some of the greatest collections of museums, art galleries and opera houses.

San Francisco also has the most expressive residents when it comes to fashion and street-style. So, feel free to dress as per your heart’s desire.

5. Recreation Opportunities

Situated at the bay, there are plenty of water sports to participate in all year round like swimming, surfing, sailing etc. There are plenty of parks and beaches for you to stop by to take a breather from a hectic schedule or to enjoy with your family.
Sports teams are also a pretty big deal around here and the festivities special to San Francisco are also not to be missed.

6. Fantastic Cuisine

As a home to many Michelin star restaurants, we can’t deny the fact that the cuisine here is no joke. With restaurants at every street, you are sure to find one that matches your taste.

7. Weather

The region has a temperate coastal climate, where the temperature never reaches the extremes. It is always suitable weather to take a stroll around the neighbourhood. This is one of the main reasons why the locals of the city are so fit.

Cons of Living in San Francisco

1. An Expensive City

Most of the facilities in the city are known to be more expensive than the national average. While eating outside, one must be aware of the fact that they’ll be spending much more than they used to in another city. Healthcare and gas rates are also quite high which makes this city a difficult one to adjust to when it comes to financial factors.

2. High Rent

Rent in San Francisco is among the highest in the US. Due to the increasing demand for houses, the rent in many neighbourhoods has touched the sky.
The average rent in the city is almost 3 times the national average.

3. Prone to Earthquake

The city is located asking the fault lines and may experience small tremors every now and then. However, there is always a lingering fear that it may be ‘the big one’.
It is advised to have an emergency kit available at all times.

4. Homelessness and Crime Rate

The city has a significantly noticeable homeless population, most probably due to the increasing rent and lack of space.

Crime rates in the city are also quite high. Though there are areas which are safe, the overall view doesn’t look very safe. With both the violent crime rate and property crime rate being higher than the national average, the city is quite dangerous.
The homeless population, at times, adds to the growing crime rate.

5. Terrible Traffic

With a population as large as that of San Francisco, the traffic here is justified in certain ways. During the rush hours, things are even worse.
It is advised to have plenty of extra time when going to an important place so as to avoid being late due to the traffic.


Many people worry about the weather being too foggy and gloomy and though the city does go through a foggy period, the overall weather of the city is quite likeable.
It is, of course, a given fact that living in San Francisco requires a lot of money and you could be earning 6 digits but still be struggling to buy a house. Apart from that, San Francisco is no less than the dream city.

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