Why Living in Oakland is Better than Living in San Francisco

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Oakland has an active arts scene, and is cheaper than San Francisco. It’s a city with plenty of low-income housing that isn’t gentrified yet. But what’s the deal?

San Francisco has a lot of things that Oakland does not. The city is very expensive and the traffic can be unbearable. Oakland is much cheaper and the weather is more pleasant.

Which Bay is better, East Bay or West Bay? In recent years, the San Francisco region has unquestionably grown in popularity due to its reputation for being environmentally friendly and socially progressive, in addition to its quickly growing economy as a result of the startup and tech boom. But which side of the Bay should you choose if you want to relocate here? We’re rather certain that you’ll choose the East Bay after doing some investigation. Here are some justifications for your next move to Oakland.

Just more affordable is Oakland

Your brain can start spinning after a fast look through the real estate listings or Craigslist rental listings. Living in Oakland typically costs 50% more than in San Francisco. A little bit of math crunching tells us that you’d need to be earning around $2,000 more per month to maintain the same level of life in San Francisco as you could in Oakland. Grocery costs in the East Bay are roughly 15% cheaper than over the bridge. That’s a substantial sum of money.

In Oakland, there is more room to breathe.

It’s packed in San Francisco. It just is. Based only on statistics, Oakland has 402,000 more residents than San Francisco (829,00), while San Francisco has a higher population density than Oakland (more than twice as many people per square mile). Additionally, Oakland, California has installed 10,000 additional trees and more than 300 acres of parks and open space over the last 15 years, so there is now physically more room to breathe. The quality of life in Oakland will provide you more room to stretch your figurative wings, especially when you consider the city’s substantially lower skyline profile and the picturesque Lake Merritt.

Oakland’s entertainment and arts scene is flourishing and diversified.

As San Francisco’s soaring rent rates have made studio space unaffordable, artists, DIYers, and other creatives have moved to Oakland in recent years. As a result, Oakland is awash with street art (such as the well-known telephone pole gnomes), galleries, and street festivals honoring popular culture. MC Hammer, Michael Franti, and Tupac Shakur were all born in Oakland, and the city is still home to a thriving music culture that includes everything from jazz and garage rock to a more experimental side.

It is more diversified in Oakland.

An examination of the 2014 Census by Pricenomics showed that Oakland just has a lot more diversity and variation economically, ethnically, and culturally. Housing availability plays a big factor in that, but this variety also speaks to a sense of community that San Francisco simply doesn’t seem to have anymore. When Jefferson Airplane departed the neighborhood, the artistic counterculture that formerly inhabited Haight-Ashbury Street relocated over the bridge, and nowadays drum circles and free yoga sessions may be found more often in Oakland’s parks. The city has a long history of serving as a center for multiculturalism, and the community’s pride in its variety implies that it will likely continue to do so for a very long time.

marketplaces for farmers. enough said

Urban gardening is a strong component of Oakland’s burgeoning DIY culture. Going to the market is one of the best things to do in Oakland because of backyard mini-farms, converting vacant property into community gardens, and a strong focus on eating locally. You can stay up with local news, including art exhibitions, forthcoming events, and, of course, who’s who, in addition to purchasing some pretty amazing vegetables. Nothing beats tomatoes straight from the vine from your neighbor down the street, even if you move to San Francisco where you could have access to some nice organic boutique stores.

Not quite persuaded? Find out why everyone is relocating to Oakland by reading this article! Visit our Oakland city page for a list of Oakland movers.


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Christina Brown
Christina Brown

Christina Brown is a professional moving guide specialist. She is a self-proclaimed expert in moving and has been writing for the last 5 years about different topics related to it. Her articles are informative, helpful, and filled with opinionated points of view that make you reevaluate how you think about relocating. If you face any problem don't hesitate to contact her at editor@americansmover.com

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