HomeShare is the startup determined to place prospective residents into condo luxury. Operational in Los Angeles and now San Francisco, the company offers a streamlined approach for transplants to easily assimilate into some of the most beautiful neighborhoods on the West Coast.
HomeShare is currently leasing units in two San Francisco luxury towers, including 1222 Harrison Street in SOMA and 6401 Shellmound St. in Emeryville. The three other apartment complexes listed on the site are fully leased, but interested housemates are instructed to ‘check back soon.’
The three living options available are Converted (a partitioned space in the living room with a small closet and access to a shared bathroom), Private (an enclosed bedroom with a closet and shared bathroom), and Master (a spacious enclosed bedroom with a walk-in closet and ensuite bathroom). This layout varies between apartment buildings, but generally speaking, the housemates share a kitchen, dining area and occasionally a living room.
HomeShare matches interested residents with housemates after filling out a short questionnaire — sidestepping the days of living with Craigslist strangers entirely. The company piles on the comforts of home, while purposefully appealing to the Millennial eye with free Netflix for the first year, a courtesy “white gloves” cleaning service and a dedicated WiFi router. Monthly rents are now priced between $1,000 and $1,900.
Housemates are encouraged to take advantage of their building’s luxury amenities, which include fitness centers, coworking spaces, game lounges, outdoor grilling areas, landscaped parks and more.
Residency also includes access to a mobile app that connects the community of ‘Homies.’ The community aspect is emphasized on their website, with an entire page dedicated to how one should interact with housemates. The company asks Homies to “Serve: Make the world a better place, even in small ways,” as well as to “Learn: Always be learning… See what the community could teach you.”
San Francisco Magazine recently took a more critical stance on HomeShare, but pointed out that “nearly 22,000 units have been built or approved in San Francisco (excluding the massive Candlestick Point development). Of these, 19,500 — 89 percent — are “above moderate,” meaning they can likely only be afforded by individuals making more than $90,000 a year.” The article then quotes Patrick Carlisle, Chief Market Analyst at the Paragon Real Estate Group, who states, “Lenders seem to be fearful that we are reaching a saturation point for these sorts of units.”
While some have accused HomeShare of capitalizing on San Francisco’s severe housing shortage, the company maintains that it is making luxury condo living more affordable and filling units that would otherwise remain unoccupied. It’s not a perfect solution, but it may keep you from staying up all night, worrying about whether your Craigslist roommate moonlights as a blackmarket organ snatcher.