The graphs below and above tell a tale of apartment hunting in the Mission.  The data spans from 2009 when lots of apartments were available to today when it is hard to find a place.  2009 saw an almost complete halt in construction in the city.  Planned and permitted residential housing construction was dead in its tracks.  Financing was impossible and there seemed to be plenty of space available. Then, the recovery began.

In 2010, the excess inventory began to be absorbed, while new construction remained slow.  Better general economic conditions combined with an internet and biotechnology expansion stoked demand. In December of 2011, availability hit rock bottom.  Listings were snapped up in an instant.  That dynamic continues today but new construction is providing more availability. Nice places are still gone in a matter of days.  Some listings have abnormally high rates with short term leases.  This says to me: “Land here and look for the perfect place.”


The rental rates asked for apartments have continually increased from mid 2010 to today.  The plots for studios, one and two bedroom apartments have shown steady increases and have enough units available to make the averages more meaningful.  The sample size for larger apartments is small so the averages have a lot of variation.   The data shows rather consistent increases in rent rates since 2010.


To put the averages in better perspective I have plotted every listing appearing on  As we all know there are many multiple listings of the same space.  Some listings are for roommates or sublets.  I didn’t include those data.  The little red balls represent each individual offering made on  The “y” axis plots monthly rental rate asked.  The “x” axis is a series of listings.  The list is ordered by the number of rooms and then by rental rate. So, the first group of plots represent individual studio apartments offered.  The second plot is for one bedroom and so on.  This chart provides a look at the distribution of listings.  It is a little arcane but it lends more perspective to the rental rate averages listed.


If you look at today’s plots within nearly 6 year perspective, what do you see?  Your comments and speculation are welcome.  Keep it civil.  Also, remember that this coming year will see more residential projects completed than ever before in the history of our fine city.

If you would like to use these data please get written permission from and Mission Local.

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George Lipp has long lived in the Mission. He’s our volunteer extraordinaire – always out taking photos or running across crimes in progress.

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