San Francisco’s low-income residents are moving out

Young woman carrying several large moving boxes across the street.

A growing number of fast-expanding technology companies, from Twitter to Salesforce, and their well-paid engineers and executives now call San Francisco home.

But that’s increasingly difficult to do for individuals who make less than $35,000 a year, according to a recent report by the San Francisco Federal Reserve Bank.

“Over the past five years, low-income individuals have been moving out of San Francisco at a much higher rate than they have been moving in,” William Dowling, a research associate with the SF Fed’s Community Development department said in a report published last year.

That’s not surprising.

The median price for a home in the City by the Bay is a million dollars, and the average asking rent is more than $3,000 a month, he said.

The financial crisis has taken its toll on people who are trying to make ends meet with less than $35,000 a year.

More than 125,000 people in that income bracket packed up and left San Francisco from 2008 to 2013, compared to less than 95,000 who moved into the city, according to the report.

During that same time period, low-wage jobs actually edged higher by 1 percent between 2008 and 2013, the report said.

While this may at first seem like good news, it means that “workers are forced to commute farther for their jobs and may become disconnected from local economic opportunities,” Dowling wrote.

“Innovative ways of thinking about affordable housing  and transportation are attempting to address some of these issues, but there is no panacea, and the community development field is still trying to understand the breadth of the problem,” he added.

You can read more about the report Are San Francisco’s Low-Income Residents Moving up or Moving Out?

The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of the management of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco or of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.