At Apartment List, we know that people care about a lot of factors when they’re searching for a home. Everyone wants a great apartment at a great price, but families look for different things in a city than young singles.
Last year, we released our list of the best cities for young families; this year, we refreshed our analysis with the latest and greatest data to help you make the best decision for your homebuyers. This report is specifically tailored for San Francisco.
The Apartment List methodology
Our analysis centered around the four factors that we identified as being important to families:
- Safety (35 percent): We used FBI data to rank cities by the number of violent crimes and property crimes per 100,000 residents.
- Housing cost (30 percent): We used census data to calculate the percentage of the median renter income required to rent a 2-bedroom apartment.
- School quality (25 percent): Cities were ranked on high school graduation rate for public school districts based in that city. Comparing schools across different states can be challenging, but using high school graduation rate data from the Department of Education gives us a good estimate of overall school quality.
- Child friendliness (10 percent): Communities with a greater percentage of children tend to be more child friendly, so we used census data to score cities based on the percentage of the population that’s under 18.
We weighted these factors using the percentages listed above, and used this index to assign grades and rankings to the nearly 500 cities in our study.
San Francisco family-friendly factor
San Francisco’s scores were as follows:
- Crime score: 8.8
- Child score: 1.2
- Education score: 53.4
- Housing score: 85.6
- Total score: 42.2
San Francisco received an extremely low child score, with only 13 percent of its overall population being under the age of 18. Next lowest was its crime score, with a rate of over 6,000 crimes being committed per 100,000 people. Things started to look up for SF around its education score, with a graduation of 82 percent, and the Golden Gate City scored relatively well for housing.
In order to rent a two-bedroom apartment in San Francisco, it requires 29 percent of the median renter income, meaning that the average San Francisco renter is not cost-burdened.
Overall, San Francisco may not be the best place to have a family, but it is by no means the worst place!
Yuki Graviet Knapp is a Content Marketing Associate with the Growth Team at Apartment List and is a resident of the Bay Area.