Cost of Living in San Francisco

Summary of cost of living in San Francisco, CA, United States:

Edit Range
Meal, Inexpensive Restaurant 25.00 $ 18.00-35.00
Meal for 2 People, Mid-range Restaurant, Three-course 107.50 $ 85.00-150.00
McMeal at McDonalds (or Equivalent Combo Meal) 12.00 $ 10.00-15.00
Domestic Beer (1 pint draught) 8.00 $ 5.00-12.00
Imported Beer (12 oz small bottle) 8.00 $ 7.00-15.00
Cappuccino (regular) 5.52 $ 4.00-7.00
Coke/Pepsi (12 oz small bottle) 2.72 $ 2.25-4.00
Water (12 oz small bottle) 2.26 $ 1.99-3.00
Milk (regular), (1 gallon) 5.92 $ 4.00-7.57
Loaf of Fresh White Bread (1 lb) 4.27 $ 2.99-7.99
Rice (white), (1 lb) 2.91 $ 1.40-5.00
Eggs (regular) (12) 5.27 $ 2.99-8.00
Local Cheese (1 lb) 9.38 $ 4.99-24.00
Chicken Fillets (1 lb) 6.89 $ 4.00-12.00
Beef Round (1 lb) (or Equivalent Back Leg Red Meat) 9.30 $ 5.00-14.00
Apples (1 lb) 3.00 $ 1.50-4.69
Banana (1 lb) 1.47 $ 0.80-4.00
Oranges (1 lb) 2.36 $ 1.00-5.00
Tomato (1 lb) 3.38 $ 1.36-4.99
Potato (1 lb) 1.97 $ 1.00-4.00
Onion (1 lb) 1.71 $ 1.00-3.99
Lettuce (1 head) 2.92 $ 1.50-4.00
Water (1.5 liter bottle) 2.34 $ 1.00-3.50
Bottle of Wine (Mid-Range) 17.75 $ 12.00-30.00
Domestic Beer (0.5 liter bottle) 2.55 $ 1.73-4.29
Imported Beer (12 oz small bottle) 3.19 $ 1.80-5.00
Cigarettes 20 Pack (Marlboro) 14.00 $ 13.00-15.00
One-way Ticket (Local Transport) 2.67 $ 2.50-4.00
Monthly Pass (Regular Price) 92.50 $ 81.00-100.00
Taxi Start (Normal Tariff) 4.15 $ 3.75-5.00
Taxi 1 mile (Normal Tariff) 3.25 $ 3.25-3.25
Taxi 1hour Waiting (Normal Tariff) 39.00 $ 39.00-39.00
Gasoline (1 gallon) 5.19 $ 4.57-6.00
Volkswagen Golf 1.4 90 KW Trendline (Or Equivalent New Car) 32,000.00 $ 30,000.00-36,753.89
Toyota Corolla Sedan 1.6l 97kW Comfort (Or Equivalent New Car) 27,336.48 $ 25,000.00-30,000.00
Utilities (Monthly)
Basic (Electricity, Heating, Cooling, Water, Garbage) for 915 sq ft Apartment 250.82 $ 150.00-400.00
Mobile Phone Monthly Plan with Calls and 10GB+ Data 50.62 $ 30.00-80.00
Internet (60 Mbps or More, Unlimited Data, Cable/ADSL) 63.92 $ 50.00-100.00
Sports And Leisure
Fitness Club, Monthly Fee for 1 Adult 102.46 $ 49.99-150.00
Tennis Court Rent (1 Hour on Weekend) 19.00 $ 10.00-40.00
Cinema, International Release, 1 Seat 17.00 $ 13.00-20.00
Preschool (or Kindergarten), Full Day, Private, Monthly for 1 Child 2,903.03 $ 2,400.00-5,000.00
International Primary School, Yearly for 1 Child 31,333.33 $ 25,000.00-37,000.00
Clothing And Shoes
1 Pair of Jeans (Levis 501 Or Similar) 61.79 $ 40.00-99.00
1 Summer Dress in a Chain Store (Zara, H&M, ...) 44.67 $ 30.00-70.00
1 Pair of Nike Running Shoes (Mid-Range) 105.62 $ 60.00-150.00
1 Pair of Men Leather Business Shoes 135.53 $ 50.00-300.00
Rent Per Month
Apartment (1 bedroom) in City Centre 3,145.96 $ 2,500.00-3,700.00
Apartment (1 bedroom) Outside of Centre 2,690.91 $ 2,100.00-3,100.00
Apartment (3 bedrooms) in City Centre 5,499.77 $ 4,800.00-7,000.00
Apartment (3 bedrooms) Outside of Centre 4,623.81 $ 3,800.00-6,000.00
Buy Apartment Price
Price per Square Feet to Buy Apartment in City Centre 1,093.12 $ 899.99-1,199.99
Price per Square Feet to Buy Apartment Outside of Centre 985.71 $ 799.99-1,199.99
Salaries And Financing
Average Monthly Net Salary (After Tax) 7,655.65 $
Mortgage Interest Rate in Percentages (%), Yearly, for 20 Years Fixed-Rate 6.57 6.00-7.75

Prices in San Francisco, California

This city had 1332 entries in the past 12 months by 210 different contributors.
Last update: June 2024
Sources and References
Distribution of Expenses Using Our Statistical Model:
Sign Up for Our Newsletter:
Your Email Address:
Leave a comment:

Your name: Sign In

Your email address (optional):

Your comment (no HTML):

7 Comments so far
Xandra on Jun 12, 2024:
This couple left California for The Netherlands :

Very informative and interesting to watch !
Victor on May 24, 2024:

Cheapest city in the US ? You're hallucinating if you think so.

California is exhorbitantly expensive with anything you can imagine.
Danya on Apr 22, 2024:
San Francisco is the cheapest city in the US and the 3rd cheapest city in the world when comparing prices/salaries, it has very high purchasing power so you can earn a lot of money/put a lot of money away from your net average salary after all monthly expenses
Kyle D. on Oct 07, 2023:
@Julie :

California is worse than the UK, believe me. Crime, pollution, Expensive as hell, and don't end up in hospital here, if you don't want to spend a second mortgage on surgery. It's sunny yes, including the endless smog because of congested highways.
Julie Bryan on Jun 10, 2021:
Hello folks

Firstly I am from England. Another place where things are stupidly costly on the money we get. I am wanting to know from someone that isn’t going to bull **** me what to expect for a monthly cost of living in Manhattan.

I’m going to give you an example of my current circumstances and I want as many responses as possible to compare. Realistic ones mind you. I am not interested in sharing with some loud drunken hormonal idiots.

I live near Sheffield. That’s Yorkshire for them that don’t know. The centre of Britain. In 2008 the cost of a city centre apartment with hardly enough room to swing a cat - was about £625 rent for a 1 bedroom maybe 2. In 2020 it’s now £925. So I now live in a house.

Here unless you are from a rich family with good jobs life sucks. You have to work long hours and put up with a lot of rubbish!

Monthly costs:
Water £60
Child support £200
Council tax (not including income tax and national ins contribution)
Rent £475
for a two bedroom is cheap normally it’s £700 for somewhere good.
£6 a week tv
£50 cable tv and internet
£20 month phone
£100 a month food if you don’t like eating a lot
£50 a month credit card

I have bad credit and no savings so I couldn’t get a mortgage.
If you earn a bit more then you can get a car. If you have a mummy and daddy they’ll pay for your car. They’ll get you started. Your £100 hang bag and make up and clothes. Whatever.

Here The average monthly wage is £1350
But they’ll claim it’s £2200 Your lucky if you get that.
Jobs are so hard to get because of the amount of applicants and I have 12 years experience and a degree!
That would be for a customer service, call centre, admin, business support, supervisory role. Sales.
You might make £2000 a month with overtime but you get taxes on this. They claim the average salary is £28000 a year maybe it is but you really have to work a lot and maybe you’ll get that if you a manger or tradesman.

Now compare that with yours. For my house worth £250k I can buy a house with a pool in America. For doing a customer service job in California(minus all the ridiculous costs on fashion you lot are into) I’d get £60-80k a year but need an American degree for that. A green card. A back up plan. I’d have to commit to long hours and we’ll if they don’t line you they can get rid.

You have no idea how lucky you are. No idea.

But your net pay is shocking.
Let’s say your in a £75000 a year job - which is a good job but you work long hours in California for that and will probably have no life) spending hours commuting. Putting up with pollution, crime etc and high living costs.

But you’ve all the deductions. Tax etc

I’ve seen hundred of 1-2 bed apartments in a good area in one of your skyscrapers with a gym (rubbish one) and some innovative design - THats between £3000 and £6000 alone - but what they don’t tell you is how much from your net pay you lose before it hits ya bank!!!

I’ve seen apartments in worser areas for less but not much less.
I’ve seen pay slips online and they claim £75000 dollars - a year
Your net pay is £2,500 a month. Before rent!!! Is this true??

Regardless because I’m a writer I have to spend time over there after lockdown. If you guys ever follow the rules.

What can I expect?

Gemme a run down


How much do you take home after deductions?

Be good to finally know the truth!

USA is sweet......I need friends in US cause I feel bored all the time I'm spending here....Yo can text me on my number (409)-292-3527.
Anonymous on Jan 01, 2021:
Hopefully covid19 will eliminate the majority because I need less travel time to shop
Anonymous on Sep 21, 2020:
San Francisco is a really great place to live for young or non-married folks.
Weather - Amazing weather all year long
Job opportunities - Extremely good. Tech, finance, arts, construction, barista, any and all jobs are out there
Compensation - Top of the market. You won't get paid better for the same job elsewhere
Cost of living - (bad) Really high.
*But if you're one to save, you can do what I did and get the high paying job (relative to other cities), and have a lower cost of living (smaller apartment, make my own coffee, bike around the city). Doing this, I was able to make and save a lot while living in SF.

But if you're going to come here, get paid a lot, but spend a lot, kind of defeats the purpose of getting the high comp.