Moving to San Francisco

Moving to San Francisco

The Giants, Fisherman’s Warf, Presidio, The 49ers, Dolores Park, Alcatraz, Golden Gate bridge- the list goes on and on. Moving to San Francisco will be a unique experience for you! With culture, techies, foodie heaven, gorgeous sights, cool temps, It’s San Francisco, what’s not to love? Here are a few tips to help you with your move:

Where to Live

Living in San Francisco is a coveted accomplishment. If you understand one thing before moving to San Francisco: neighborhoods are expensive everywhere in the city! It’s common for people to live with multiple roommates to make budgets stretch. Rather than looking for an apartment to live in on your own, look into single room rentals. Multiple roommates usually means tight quarters! Most people will have to downsize to make their living situation work. Consider renting a storage unit in the city to house extra goods or off-season items. Some companies, like U-Haul, will even offer a free month of storage with a one-way equipment rental.

How to Move Your Stuff

Keep these few tips in mind when deciding how to move your belongings.

  1. Rent the smallest moving truck your move size allows. Parking is extremely tight and hills are steep in this city, so if it’s feasible, a cargo van might be the best option for moving in the city.
  2. If you have to opt for a larger truck, it’s best to move as early in the morning as possible. This will allow you the best opportunity to find a place to double park. Double park your personal vehicle or your moving truck and then replace your car with the moving truck once it’s been rented. Double parking will also allow you to deploy the moving truck’s ramp.
  3. Consider portable storage. If you’re moving your personal belongings state to state, moving with portable storage allows you to ship and store your items. If this is the method you choose, you will need to get a temporary permit so the U-Box container can be unloaded on the street or sidewalk.  Or, you can rent a truck and load and unload your U-Box container at your local U-Haul center.  
  4. Take public transportation to pick up your moving truck.  There is often limited parking on the streets and at the moving center, so it’s best to either take public transportation or have a friend drop you off to pick up your truck.

Note: High rise apartment buildings are popular in the city. If you’re moving into these buildings, know that you will usually need an elevator reservation. It’s common to have a short window of time with these reservations – approximately a 2-hour limit. For a speedy move, look for a few extra helping hands! Ask any friends you might have in the area to assist you or you can always book Moving Help!


There are many options for you to get around in The City By the Bay. If you have to drive out of the city for work, know that a commute could be anywhere from 35 minutes to 2 hours! Other methods of transportation are as followed:

  • Muni – The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency will get you where you need to go. If you’re busing or taking a historic trolley, they have the information you need.
  • BART – If you want to catch a game or a flight, the Bay Area Rapid Transit is the best way to go.
  • Bike or walk – Biking or walking the streets of San Fran isn’t a bad way to get around. You’re exercising and enjoying the sites of such a diverse place!

Once you’re on the move, have a little fun and snap some photos on the way! Submit them here or via Instagram using #uhaulfamous to become U-Haul Famous!

For more tips on moving to San Francisco, watch the video below from the President of U-Haul of San Francisco, Joe Krueger: