It’s not the increase in number of units that the city drastically needs, but San Francisco rentals housing is increasing in one important way: new units are bigger than in years past.
San Francisco apartments are the fifth smallest in the nation, according to Yardi’s RentCafe; the average size here is 737 square feet. But the city’s new units are bucking a national trend of shrinking square footage. San Francisco’s developers “are building units 13 percent larger than the ones delivered 10 years ago,” according to RentCafe. New apartments reaching completion in the city in 2018 were on average 840 square feet in size. “This increase in size, though, was accompanied by a steep hike in costs: rents surged here by 65 percent compared to 2008.”