When the word “iconic” comes to mind, one of the first things we think about is San Francisco. This city is one of the top-five biggest places to live in the Golden State, offering you many places to call home, great views of the Bay, and some pretty fun attractions, too.

Whether you’re fresh out of college and looking to start your career or hope to have kids in the near future and want somewhere family-friendly but fun to move to, San Francisco might just be your golden ticket. 

Today, we’re going to share some of the best up-and-coming neighborhoods in San Francisco to help you figure out where a good place is to put down roots. (And hey, if you need some friendly San Francisco movers to help out with the big move, you know who to call!)

The 5 best up-and-coming neighborhoods in San Francisco

We’ve scoured far and wide to come up with a list of the best up-and-coming neighborhoods in San Francisco for you. Here are some of the top contenders: 

South of Market

One of the absolute best neighborhoods in San Francisco for young professionals

South of Market (aka SoMa) is a massive district that contains both Mission Bay and South Beach. The neighborhood is chock-full of warehouses, but don’t be fooled. There are plenty of incredible amenities, attractions, and more that make this neighborhood one of the best places to live in the San Francisco Bay area. 

According to the San Francisco Travel Association, the neighborhood was developed in 1847.
People began opening businesses in SoMa due to how close it is to shipping centers and realizing that having stores around would really benefit the people who lived there. 

Over the years, SoMa has turned into one of the best, most vibrant places to live in the Golden City, being home to popular attractions (the Museum of Modern Art, Pier 24 Photography Museum, Folsom Street Fair, SF Giants Baseball games, and Westfields San Francisco Centre–to name a few) and all the amenities you could want. 

If you’re looking for a suitable place to work in San Francisco, this neighborhood also has you covered, as many software companies have set up shop there. At the top of our head, we can think of Swrve, TekRevol, Onfleet HQ, Airtable, and Granular, Inc. 

And if you’re moving your family to SoMa, you have tons of schools to choose from, including the Chinese American International School, Bessie Carmichael Elementary School, Bessie Carmichael Middle School, Proof School, and Five Keys Charter School. Most people rent in SoMa, but if you choose to buy, the median home value is $970,578.

Golden Gate Heights

One of the best neighborhoods to buy in San Francisco

Hop in your car, and go toward Inner Sunset. In the middle of that neighborhood and Forest Hill, you’ll come across one of San Francisco’s best-kept secrets, Golden Gate Heights. This neighborhood is full of hills and curvy one-way streets, but it has some pretty scenery as well. After all, it encompasses two of the city’s most prominent hills, including Larsen Peak (Golden Gate Heights Park) and Grandview Park. 

Developed in 1927 with some of the earliest houses dating back to the ‘30s, it has come to be one of the best San Francisco neighborhoods to live in. The neighborhood is smaller than many (with a total population of 14,880), but there are lots of things to do there, such as checking out the 16th Avenue Tiled Stairs. 

If you plan to move there with your kids, here are some of the schools: the Maria Montessori School of the Golden Gate Co., Gates & Bridges Preschool, Jefferson Elementary School, Herbert Hoover Middle School, and Abraham Lincoln High School. 

You can get a home in Golden Gate Heights for a median value of $1,387,704, or if you want to start out by renting, you can expect to pay about $2,373, says Niche. Whichever option you choose, you’re sure to love it there. 


One of the overall best places to live in the San Francisco Bay area

Another on our list of up-and-coming neighborhoods in the Bay area is Parkside, a neighborhood in southwest San Francisco to the north of Pine Lake Park and Stern Grove. The neighborhood was mapped out way back in 1905, with the goal of putting in a new residential neighborhood between Golden Gate Heights all the way to 33rd Avenue, as well as between Sloat Boulevard and Quintara Street. 

The neighborhood started development just a few years later, in 1907, beginning with small, charming cottages and eventually transitioning to Mediterranean-style homes. (You can buy a home for a median value of $1,068,718 in Parkside or rent for just over $2,400 on average.)

One resident says, “Parkside is a great neighborhood to live in especially if you are a student or raising a family. It is a generally quiet neighborhood with good parking (big plus in SF). Its easily accessible to SFSU, Stonestown, and Daly City so you pretty much don’t need to leave the area often.

There are also many places to get a job in and near Parkside, including Simplifi, Spryscapes Construction Inc., and Vexadev. Attraction-wise, Parkside has the San Francisco Botanical Garden, PIER 39, Lands End Lookout, Hidden Garden Steps, Crissy Field, Golden Gate Bridge, and San Francisco Zoo close by. 

In terms of schools, you can send your kids to Stratford School, Commodore Sloat Elementary School, Dianne Feinstein Elementary School, Aptos Middle School, A.P. Giannini Middle School, Lowell High School, or San Francisco Waldorf High School. 


One of the all-around best San Francisco neighborhoods to live in for singles

Mid-Market (also called Central Market) includes Market Street and goes from Fifth Street to Van Ness Avenue. Unlike other parts of San Francisco, Mid-Market is not known for Victorian houses, hillsides, or cable car tours. 

However, it is a notable city for tech, being home to IFTTT, Symless, Zendesk, CoderPad, Finley Technologies, Inc., and numerous other companies. So, if you’re single and want to meet people and work in San Francisco, Mid-Market is a great place for that. (Current home prices are up to $1,895,000, according to one report, so finding a good job in tech should help with the big move!)

The neighborhood also has a long list of attractions, including the Warfield (great for concerts), The Unreal Garden (a museum and entertainment spot), and Brick & Mortar Music Hall. Also, if you like to shop, you’ll have a blast at the neighborhood’s many stores and boutiques. Afterward, you might even enjoy stopping for a bite to eat at a restaurant such as VILLON, Rue Lepic French Restaurant, La Bande, or The Melt. 

If you’re considering moving your family to Mid-Market, there are multiple parks, including the Mission Bay Kids’ Park, Tenderloin Children’s Playground, and Margaret S. Hayward Playground. There are also many schools in the Mid-Market area, from the San Francisco Beacon Initiative, De Marillac Academy, and Tenderloin Community Elementary School to Francisco Middle School, CAIS Middle School, Presidio Hill School, and Ida B Wells High School. 

Hayes Valley

One of the coolest, best neighborhoods in San Francisco for millennials 

We can’t say enough good things about Hayes Valley. It’s a quirky, fun, exciting neighborhood situated in the middle of the Civic Center and Alamo Square. There, you’ll find a variety of home styles, including those famous Victorian San Francisco houses you see on TV as well as Edwardian townhomes. 

Over 80% of people living in Hayes Valley rent, with the median rent being $1,964. (The median home value is $1,428,626, in case you’re curious.) Hayes Valley got a big facelift over 30 years ago, and it is now considered one of the leading places to live for young professionals due to the close proximity to downtown, many restaurants and bars, thriving nightlife, and abundant places to shop. So, if you want a nice condo in the middle of where everything is happening and with many options for things to do at night, you can’t get much better than Hayes Valley. 

Anthony on Quora says, “The pros [of living in Hayes Valley] are the central location – it’s close to BART, several Muni stops, freeway entrance, and has lots of places to eat/drink/see shows. It’s also very walkable and feels kind of quaint (less so on weekend nights when the sidewalks are teeming with people).

Fun fact: in addition to being great for millennials and young professionals, the neighborhood gets an A for family-friendliness. It offers highly rated schools, such as L’Academy Mandarin Immersion Preschool San Francisco Hayes Valley, John Muir Elementary School, Roosevelt Middle School, James Lick Middle School, Urban School, and San Francisco High School of the Arts. 

Plan your move to San Francisco today 

Ready to start moving to the Golden City? The best up-and-coming neighborhoods in San Francisco await, and Bellhop can help you get there. We are the go-to local and long-distance movers in San Francisco that can help with delivery, loading, unloading, and many more tasks to help your move go off without a hitch. We also help coordinate moves for nearby cities like San Jose should you be interested!

Need to move last minute in San Francisco? We can help!

Harrison Stevens