Was wondering about the Sunset/Ocean Beach/Richmond districts; they seem to be a bit cheaper albeit more residenal than the center of the city. Are they completely suburban, or is there a decent 'feel' to the neighborhoods? Can you walk to stuff (restaurants, grocery store), or do you have to drive/take transit? How's the trip downtown from there...decent mass transit available?
North Beach and Telegraph hill seem very cool, but I don't see much chance of us getting anything bigger than perhaps a small 2 BR for under $2k, and with the pets and my bikes and Steph's sewing, I don't see too much chance of making that work. Same issues with SoMA, Mission, and Bernal Heights, I'd assume?
Berkely seems to be a cool town, and we'd be nearer to my family, but I'm wondering about the commute to downtown. It's on the BART, so I don't see why it'd be too bad, but you never know...Biggest question is about suburbs on the penninsula like Freemont and Pacifica. Are they simply bland, generic McTowns, or is there any redeeming quality to them? Is a commute to downtown workable? (One guy at the office lives in Fremont and says it's fine...25 min in the morning, 45 in the evening...) We could get a lot of space for the money living out there, but I don't want to sacrifice the whole experience of living in/near SF for the sake of another bedroom or a garage...
Finally, what options are there north of the city? Sausalito? Anything?
He's freaking out in his own way. Occasionally our freakouts complement each other and we get some work done. I'm really hoping we can find something in Berkeley, otherwise I'd like to get as far out of the city as possible. I'm tired of little apartments.