How much does nice office space cost in the Bay Area?


How much does office space for startups cost in the Bay Area? What are the options?

I'm thinking of startup-friendly places, including SoMa, Silicon Valley, and places in the east bay like Emeryville.

Office Silicon Valley Real Estate San Francisco

asked Dec 14 '09 at 11:40
Joel Spolsky
13,482 points
  • Adding a bounty, in case someone can add data about San Francisco itself (SoMa, Downtown, etc) and the east bay (Emeryville et al) – Joel Spolsky 14 years ago

4 Answers


For the south bay area, here are some rates from the Cornish & Carey NoCal quarterly report

Asking Rates (NNN/per SF/per Month)

  • Campbell = $1.13
  • Cupertino = $2.51
  • Fremont = $0.88
  • Los Gatos = $1.27
  • Milpitas = $0.78
  • Mountain View = $1.59
  • Newark = $1.21
  • San Jose = $1.04
  • Santa Clara = $1.10
  • Sunnyvale = $1.20

A historical perspective can be seen at here Note: I tried everyway I could think of to put this data in a table and to make the image display inline and could not make either happen. If someone knows how to make this happen please email it to me at dane "@" awrcorp "dot" com.

answered Dec 14 '09 at 13:38
1,866 points
  • NNN = triple net, I assume. How much does this add to the total cost? Places I've been, it's rare to see things quoted "triple net." Also... any idea about San Francisco? – Joel Spolsky 14 years ago
  • Depending on the type of space I would expect full service space to be $1 or more extra depending on how nice the space is. For our space in Campbell it's about $1.10. Also these rates are average and for nice space I would expect to be 30% above these rates. I don't have any data for San Francisco, sorry. – Dane 14 years ago


Office Space in San Francisco is a tricky. There's the downtown stuff for the lawyers and bankers and then the artsy stuff in the Mission. Here is what I could find out:

  • Financial District: $28-$35 per sq-ft (Full Service). You can spend more if you want a view. The food options are pretty good but it's dead after 6:00pm.
  • SOMA: $2-$26 per sq-ft. It varies so much because of the variety. It's close to the Ball park and the food options are great.
  • Potrero (Between 101 and 280): $1-$5 per sq-ft per month. The Digg guys used to be in this area (same building as The Guardian on Mississippi). It's close to the Ball Park, Freeway and Mission Bay, which has USCF Gladstone and a bunch of BioTech. The food options are OK. There are a lot of neighborhood bars and Anchor Steam has the brewery on Mariposa and De Haro (Great tour).
  • Mission Bay / China Basin: $34-$38 per sq-ft per month and probably higher if you get next to USCF Gladstone. Most of the buildings are new in Mission Bay and UCSF is building a hospital right across from Gladstone.

I don't know much about the East Bay but the rents are a lot cheaper. High Tech / Bio Tech guys tend to be in Emeryville, Downtown Oakland, Berkeley and farther out in Walnut Creek.

A lot of Software Startups are also near Oracle in Redwood Shores, Foster City and Redwood City. A lot of the office space around Oracle tends to be in the $20-$30 per square-foot range. It's nice stuff but kind of out of the way (e.g. not much to do or eat).

answered Dec 25 '09 at 03:07
Jarie Bolander
11,421 points


Check out this "Garry's San Francisco Guide to Where Your Startup Should Be" It is an interactive map that shows you details about all the hot areas for startups in the bay area.


answered Jul 27 '10 at 18:13
4,815 points


We just negotiated a lease for $1.25 for Class A space, furniture, great looking space and building, for $1.25 in Santa Clara, full service.

Update - we signed the lease and moved in. It's a killer space; we love it.

answered Dec 14 '09 at 15:45
659 points
  • wow. that's cheap. I remember when silicon valley rents were about the same as Manhattan, but that was 1999 – Joel Spolsky 14 years ago
  • (the equivalent would be $4-$5 in manhattan) – Joel Spolsky 14 years ago
  • That is cheap. What size is the space? – Dane 14 years ago
  • We had several options in this price range; 4200 sq ft, 5300 sq ft, and several 6000-9000 sq ft. These are all around Great America. Palo Alto, Mtn View are still $2+. We went with the 4200 as it's large enough for a year, and has great furniture. – Mitch 14 years ago

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