Value of one square foot of this luxury SF condo equals what most Bay Area tenants pay in rent

Oh, the pain, the pain — and the cost, the cost of renting a Bay Area apartment.

A new post at the Homelight real estate blog puts it all into perspective: A luxury condo sold last month in San Francisco’s Russian Hill neighborhood for $4.35 million. It’s a two-bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath, 1,960 square-foot unit lined with walls of windows, mimicking the style of a mid-century Eichler home. Set on the 31st floor at 999 Green Street, with fabulous views out over the city, the apartment’s cost per square foot is $2,219.

“That means that just one foot of the place is more than you pay in rent for your tiny San Francisco apartment,” writes Alexa Collins of Homelight. “You could probably fit a toaster in that space. Or a corner of your bed.”

We’d like to extend the thought — the cost per square foot is basically a match for what many people pay for two-bedroom apartments in San Jose, Oakland and other Bay Area cities, too. According to a June report from the website, the median monthly rent for a two-bedroom unit in San Jose is $2,570. In Oakland, it’s $2,500.

However, to be totally accurate, we should probably point out that the value of two square feet at 999 Green — $4,438 — is more in line with what San Francisco tenants pay for their two-bedroom apartments. According to, the median monthly rent for a two-bedroom flat in San Francisco is $4,550.

Here’s the post from Homelight.

And in case you were wondering about those walls of windows: 999 Green Street is known as The Summit. It is a modern Eichler-style apartment house — “a rectangular skyscraper with a beige central concrete column that divides the building in half,” Collins writes. “You’ll find resemblance between the facade of Eichler houses and this building in the two walls of windows that make up the four corners of each unit. San Francisco’s elite (who) own property in the midcentury modern… units have sprawling views of the city.”

Developer Joseph L. Eichler built distinctive, mid-century tract homes that create the sense of bringing the outdoors into their flowing, light-filled interiors, lined with windows. From 1949-74, Eichler — while based in Palo Alto and, later, San Francisco — built 10,500 houses across the region, even entire Eichler neighborhoods, from Walnut Creek to San Jose’s Willow Glen.

Here’s the floor plan of the Russian Hill condo, courtesy of Alexa Collins at Homelight:

Photo: Luxury condo that sold last month on San Francisco’s Russian Hill for $4,350,000. (Courtesy of Alexa Collins/Homelight)


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