• Local Expert 62 points
  • Reviews 2
  • Questions 0
  • Answers 0
  • Discussions 0


4/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 2/5
  • Safe & Sound 2/5
  • Clean & Green 3/5
  • Pest Free 2/5
  • Peace & Quiet 3/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 2/5
  • Parking 2/5
  • Cost of Living 5/5
Just now

"Great views, but not much else"

I live on top of the hill on Dwight street, across from the high school. The view of SF and the entire bay make it almost possible to forget climbing up the extremely steep hill, the rampant car theft, the cars flying over the hill and honking their horns all hours of the night and the lively skunk population. I mean, where else can you see fireworks from every part of the bay area on New Year's and 4th of July from your living room?
  • Spectacular views
  • Affordable
  • Fairly quiet
  • Car theft
  • Steep hill
  • Little parking
2/5 rating details
  • Neighborly Spirit 3/5
  • Safe & Sound 1/5
  • Clean & Green 2/5
  • Pest Free 3/5
  • Peace & Quiet 4/5
  • Eating Out 1/5
  • Nightlife 1/5
  • Parks & Recreation 5/5
  • Shopping Options 1/5
  • Gym & Fitness 1/5
  • Internet Access 5/5
  • Lack of Traffic 3/5
  • Parking 1/5
  • Cost of Living 4/5
  • Public Transport 3/5
Just now

"Decent neighborhood, cheap rent"

I have lived in Portola for a little over a year now. I previously lived in the East Bay where Oakland, Berkeley and Emeryville all meet up. While I do feel slightly safer walking around Portola at night, my car has been stolen (and unharmed upon recovery) not once, but twice, from a few houses down the street. Both times, when at the Bayview Police Station, I flipped through the rap sheet and noticed many other car thefts in the neighborhood as well. If you want to move here and have an older model car, BUY A CLUB! Or install a kill switch or something. Protect your car!

Other than the abundance of car theft, I have had few other problems. My apartment is spacious with a great kitchen and an AMAZING view of the entire Bay Area. Close proximity to the high school does mean alot of noise from band practice (I swear, they only play ONE song). Being atop the hill also means parking is a nightmare if you don't have a spot to claim directly in front of your house. Also, there I have often seen and smelled skunks that stalk the area where I live. In fact, one night coming home from work, I had to wait until my downstairs neighbor parked in front the house and scared away the skunk that was hanging out right outside the entryway to my place. But these are manageable problems, and walking up the hill is a great way to get some exercise everyday.

The reason I moved here was the rent is way more affordable than anywhere else I looked in SF and I can get to and from work in less than 10 minutes by car. 15 if there is traffic. After commuting on BART and MUNI from the east bay and then driving across the bridge for a while, the practically non-existent commute makes it pretty much worth it for me.

Sure there aren't many lively social spots or great restaurants, but McLaren park is barely more than a stone's throw away and you can hop on the freeway and be in the heart of SF in 15 minutes. Sure, it would be nice not to have to worry about my car all the time and to be closer to all the great stuff SF has to offer. But there are way fewer gunshots at night than there were in the East Bay and you can't beat the rent.

Overall, its a decent place to live if you prefer affordable housing to nightlife and fancy restaurants, if you can tolerate the inconvenience of occasionally having your car stolen and if you don't mind skunk odor every now and again.
  • Affordable Houses
  • Great Parks
  • Difficult parking
  • Abundant car theft
  • Close to Crime

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