Happy Friday everyone! Nabewise recently sent out an email with their rankings for neighborhoods in San Francisco that are best for families. The votes come from locals, but I’m still fairly surprised with the results. If you ask me what neighborhood is best for families, I’d tell you that whatever neighborhood you will be the happiest in will be the right place for you. Some buyers want a little yard and the proverbial white picket fence, while others want to be able to walk to plenty of playgrounds, stores, and public transit.
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The nabewise family rankings, to me at least, really seem to reflect the suburban story of child rearing – a single family house with a private yard, a garage that you drive into and out of, and dependence on a car as your primary means of transport. And it seems to me that if this is your vision, then perhaps the suburbs are where you should buy a house?
Coming in first in the nabewise rankings is the Saint Francis Wood neighborhood, a neighborhood known for its large and expensive homes – the median price in 2010 for St. Francis Wood was $1,909,000 with a median size of over 2,400 square feet. Coming in behind St. Francis Wood was a tie between Sea Cliff and Monterey Heights – neighborhoods that again are known for large single family homes. And for being expensive! Sea Cliff had a 2010 median home price of $2,540,000 and a median square footage of over 2,600.
Where do mere mortals with children live? Or must you be a hedge fund manager to afford children in San Francisco? Wait, wait… don’t answer that. Diamond Heights comes in a three way tie for third place with Laguna Honda and Balboa Terrace. Diamond Heights has a smattering of mainly 1960’s vintage single family homes (think Eichler), and also a large concentration of condominiums in large complexes. Given its reputation for wind and fog during the summer, I am surprised to see it rank so high. With a 2010 median home price of $520,000, Diamond Heights is by far the most affordable neighborhood of those ranked so far. (caveat: the large quantity of studios and 1BR condos in Diamond Heights pulls the median price down, don’t be tricked into thinking you’ll pick up a single-family in the neighborhood for that price).
So there you have it… the most family friendly neighborhoods according to NabeWise. Do you agree? Disagree? I’d love to hear your thoughts.