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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Pick-UpBnB Not So Far Removed from Real San Francisco Rent Market

Posted By on Wed, Jul 30, 2014 at 2:12 PM

click to enlarge flatbed.png
Now that San Francisco might have to kill its 43-year-old ordinance against car dwelling, a new coterie of entrepreneurs has alighted on cars — or rather, the beds of cars — as the next battlefront in the sharing economy.

Sure, Pick-UpBnB appears to be a work of satire. But given the current housing crisis in San Francisco, we could see how its offer of a shared bed in a 1999 Ford Ranger might appeal to some famished apartment hunters. The "roomy" 4 x 8 flatbed includes street parking close to the verdant environs of Golden Gate Park, with "all the amenities the park has to offer" (water fountains, public restrooms, buffalo, paddle boats, bike paths, etc.) An "almost new" camper shell protects tenants from inclement weather and harmful UV rays, while providing "maximum hide-ability" from SFPD at night.

Compare that to a more earnest add that appeared on Craigslist yesterday, for a "sleeping room" in a rent-controlled Haight-Ashbury apartment that originally cost $1,250 a month. The 200-square-foot room was later reduced to $1,150, and then removed from Craigslist altogether, but you can still check out its various amenities (a dishwater gray carpet and a sink) on this video tour: 

That was enough to inspire an apoplectic post from local blogger SFCitizen, who pointed out that the sleeping room violates a state civil code requiring rental property to be in a "habitable condition" — the room in question lacks a kitchen, which makes it unsuitable for dwelling.

By that logic, the truck bed wouldn't be legal either. But its proprietors seem to know that. Apparently, that's why they invoked the term "share."
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About The Author

Rachel Swan

Rachel Swan

Rachel Swan was a staff writer at SF Weekly from 2013 to 2015. In previous lives she was a music editor, IP hack, and tutor of Cal athletes.


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