A Guide to the San Francisco Districts

San FranciscoOne of the major cities of California is San Francisco. It is known for the hilly terrains, Victorian architecture, summer fog, liberal communities, historical sites, scenic views, and cultural diversity. Every district in this area has its unique culture. Here are the popular districts in San Francisco.

  1. Golden Gate – The fashionable neighborhoods are included in this district like the Marina District, Cow Hollow, and Pacific Heights. Great scenery and historical landmarks can be found in this area. You can see the Fort Mason, The Presidio, and the Golden Gate Bridge.
  2. Fisherman’s Wharf- This waterfront neighborhood encompasses Ghirardelli Square, Pier 39, and ferry going to the Alcatraz, and seafood restaurants and souvenir stores.
  3. Nob Hill and Russian Hill- These neighborhoods have luxury hotels, cable cars, and steep inclines.
  4. Chinatown and North Beach – These are 2 immigrant communities. Chinatown in San Francisco is the largest Chinatown outside Asia. It’s just near Telegraph Hill and Coit Tower.
  5. Union Square and Financial District – Union Square is the shopping center in the city. Theaters and great artworks are also found here. Skyscrapers are found in the Financial District.
  6. Civic Center and Tenderloin – The Civic Center and tenderloin are in contrast with one another. The Civic Center is neoclassical while the ‘Loin is grittier. There are a lot of interesting architecture and attractions found in this area.
  7. SoMa (South of Market) – This area is now the center of new construction sites for skyscrapers, museums, and AT&T Park which is the home of the San Francisco Giants.
  8. Western Addition – This is where Japantown is located. This was once the center of the Japanese population. Today, there are a lot of Victorian homes here with a lot of Japanese stores, restaurants and hotels that Japanese travelers prefer.
  9. Haight- This was once a bohemian area and now the home for the Hippie movement.
  10. The Avenues – Included the foggy Richmond, Sunset and Parkside districts. On the west is the Ocean Beach; south has Sloat Boulevard, and Golden Gate Park.
  11. Twin Peaks and Lake Merced – Found in the Southwestern San Francisco, this area has the taller hills and the Lake Merced Park. The San Francisco Zoo is found in Lake Merced Park.
  12. Castro and Noe Valley – Castro is also known as the Eureka Valley. This historical site is known for the LGBTQ community. Noe Valley on the other hand, has a lot of restaurants and shops on the sidewalk.
  13. Mission and Bernal Heights – The Hispanic Community and the urban artisans are found in this colorful area. If you love night life, then this is where you need to go in San Francisco. Local flavors are also found in this area.
  14. Southeast San Francisco- This residential area houses the lower income residents. This district has bay-side neighborhoods, parks, Candlestick Park, and the home of the 49ers NFL team.

From Its Fall to Rise: Nob Hill

Nob Hill is a steep hill in San Francisco. It is one of the San Francisco homes  that feature best of the most sophisticated hotels that provides magnificent bird’s-eye views of the city. It is where one can find the well known Big Four Hotels namely, the St. Francis, the Fairmont, the Mark Hopkins and the Huntington. Grace Cathedral

The Grace cathedral, situated in the area, has already become an global pilgrimage focus and famous for works of art like the replica of Ghiberti’s ‘Gates of Paradise’, diverse stained glass windows, De Rosen mosaics, Keith Haring AIDS Chapel altarpiece, 2 labyrinths, and medieval and modern fixtures, together with its 44 bell carillon, 3 organs, and their choirs which has been one of the 7 only remaining of their kind.

Fairmont HotelDue to its sights and its inner location, Nob Hill has become a restricted territory of the elites and other upper class people who has constructed massive estates in the place. Unfortunately, the 1906 earthquake and fire destroyed most of them and the only remaining is the James C. Flood Mansion and the Fairmont Hotel. Both of these buildings have exteriors made of stone hence, they survived the tragedy. The Fairmont Hotel still acts as one of San Francisco’s grandest hotels still in action and the Flood Mansion has become the head office of Pacific-Union Club and a tourist spot.

Nob Hill HomesNowadays Nob Hill homes still are majestic. Instead of the mansions, high-class sky scraping condominiums and hotels ruled the town. Hotels were erected above the remains of the earlier mansions consisting of the Huntington Mark Hopkins, and Stanford Court.

It is such a nice place to live in. For a traveler, witnessing its grandeur is one of the things to do in San Francisco. It has been contributing long and short sales in San Francisco due to the presence of plenty business areas. Luckily, there haven’t been any negative feedbacks published about the place yet, but sure is Nob Hill homes will make you feel classy. Not only because of the scenery and the area and places to go to, but the prices of stuff also go the same way too.

Should You Rent Or Buy A Home In Retirement?

When we retire the idea of renting a home will be far from our minds. A lot of us may want to own a home, but if you want to move after retirement then you should know the pros and cons of buying vs. renting.Retirement

If you want to make a housing decision, then you may want to know the status if the prices in homes in many parts of the country especially the area where you want to settle down. This way, you will know if you could afford to buy a home or not. You financial situation is a very important factor on deciding whether to rent or buy a property.  Try to add your total savings, the place where you want to move to after retiring and the value of your current home if you are planning to sell it.

According to the study of the website Trulia, buying a home is cheaper than renting in the top 100 U.S. metropolitan markets. If you are retiring, then the low mortgage rates right now is the best time to buy. If you will be retiring in the future, however, renting might be a good plan due to increasing home prices and higher mortgages.

Of course, mortgages typically require a down payment, which can involve coming up with a serious chunk of cash up front.

Getting a mortgage will require a down payment, but if you have sold your home or planning to sell one, the down payment may not be a problem. You may also consider using your retirement accounts, but you will have to cut down your daily expenses.  You may also lose your tax deferral when you take out cash on your retirement accounts. You may also not want to have a mortgage after you retire.

Getting a mortgage is not just about finances. A lot of retirees get a psychological boost from not having to worry about paying debts after retirement. Now, that is definitely worth something.