Going to San Francisco? Put Cash In Your Hair

Cold hard currency is running the game in San Francisco these days

If you can't afford a place in San Francisco, join the club. Population: nearly everybody. Unless you have a suitcase -- and possibly an entire luggage set -- full of cold, hard, cash.

Even well-off "techies" and other folks who would be squarely in the 1 percent elsewhere in the country are getting squeezed out of the city, according to a CNET report.

"It's nearly impossible to buy a home unless you have hundreds of thousands of dollars in the bank," the Web site reported, noting figures from Zillow and other real estate tracking companies that the median home price is still hovering around $1 million and that the media rent is $3,600 a month -- but that only tells part of the story.

There are thousands of newly-minted millionaires thanks to the successful IPOs of the likes of Twitter and Facebook, CNet reported, and they're fueling the bidding wars over the few available living spaces.

(In case you'd missed it, there are too few housing units available to meet swelling demand, thanks to a combination of no available space to build and restrictive zoning laws. That, and all that tech cash driving up prices.)

One-third of home sales in SF are now all-cash, according to realtors. Apartment-hunting is similar: A couple spent two years hunting for an apartment after leaving New York. But after bidding 16 percent over the list price, they finally found a place... on their 18th try.

If you're coming to San Francisco, don't forget the cash. You may need every last penny.

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