Where to live in Bay Area - couple w/ commutes to Redwood City & Oakland
July 10, 2014 10:29 PM Subscribe
My boyfriend currently pays $1500/month for a studio in a less than stellar area of San Francisco (his car has been broken into 5+ times in the past year), and works in Redwood City. For various reasons now, he's sick of the city and wants to move. The idea is that eventually we would move in together. Since I work in Oakland, we're having trouble imagining where we might live that would make commuting at least not soul-sucking for both of us.
posted by girasol to Home & Garden (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Here's what he's looking for (possibly a unicorn?)
-Commute within 45 min of Redwood City (driving)
-Rent: $1500/month (if possible - we'd need the rent to be affordable on just his income initially, but we could pay up to $2,300 together)
-1 bedroom (not a studio) with free parking
-Safe, interesting enough enough area (i.e. we're not going to be worried about car break-ins, and neighborhood should have some character)
-Challenge factor: Location also offers a reasonable commute to Oakland (by public transit if possible). We're not ready to move in together now, but are considering for the future. But - I work in Oakland. I love my job and want to stay for at least another year. (I could potentially get a cheap car and suck it up, but I'd need to reduce my driving anxiety with my therapist first). I work at a nonprofit and imagine my next job would be in the easy bay/SF. I know this is a lot to ask for, but we've realized how important a reasonable commute is and would like to prioritize this if possible. I'm very open to being challenged on this.
The goal is to free ourselves from the fog and city pace (and break-ins), have enough space for co-habitation, and live below our means so we can save. Right now I'm pretty worried that there's just no middle ground, and am feeling fearful and kind of trapped given a) how expensive the area is, and b) the crappy commuting options (especially public transit). I want to be able to carve out a niche for myself and my boyfriend eventually, but I worry that just might not be possible.
So my questions are:
1) What recommendations do you have for where to live, given our situation?
2) Is what we're looking for totally non-existent? If so, what compromises do you suggest we consider making?
3) How can I reframe my fear that we won't be able to create a home in the bay area, given the expense, poor commuting options, and our east bay/Peninsula workplace situation?