Battle Royale: Hayes Valley or Haight Ashbury, if you had to choose

We’ve been having lots of fun with the other Battles: Outer Richmond v. Outer Sunset and Pacific Heights v. Marina, so today we give you Hayes Valley or Haight Ashbury. The choice is yours. As always, we provide the data, and hope you provide the insight. Have fun. Sorry for the tech difficulties, it’s not us.

Correction on the Outer Richmond/Outer Sunset post. The charts we posted from Altos research were actually median prices for condos, not sfr’s. It is now fixed.


Hayes Valley Stats (source: SFAR MLS)


Haight Ashbury Stats (source: SFAR MLS)


Haight Ashbury zip 94117 (Median: source Altos Research)

Single Family


Hayes Valley zip 94102

Single Family


When looking at these charts, keep in mind that they are based off of zip code, not property type and exact street delineations as in the San Francisco Association of Realtors District Map.

11 thoughts on “Battle Royale: Hayes Valley or Haight Ashbury, if you had to choose

  1. I’m going to get this started. I personally would take Hayes Valley. Much cooler vibe. Less riff-raff and derelicts hanging around than on Haight. Property seems to me to still be a bit undervalued in Hayes Valley and it is definitely up and coming, if not already up and gone. This is not to say I don’t like the Haight area, especially if you count the homes between Haight and Oak. Very nice there. The shops and restaurants on Haight are top notch and so is the architecture in the whole area and places sell and they sell fast. I still choose Hayes. Much more potential in my opinion in that area. In other words, I’d think it a good investment, and that is where I’d put my money.


  2. I’ve lived in both neighborhoods. And I agree that Hayes Valley might be undervalued, and would be a better longterm hold for purchase. I also like the city sort of vibe down there. But then again, the Haight contains Cole Valley which is really a great and very safe neighborhood, with a number of lovely homes.

    My main gripe with Hayes Valley is that it will continue to be troubled by a few blocks for the conceivable future. The Buchanan corridor is pretty dangerous, and a lot of bad stuff happens on Webster between Grove and Haight. These are blocks that, truth be told, segment Hayes Valley into different pockets. The Hayes street pocket of commerce not only has two thoroughfares between it and Lower Haight, but some scary (at times) blocks.

    So I’d probably choose the Haight, although it too, is sort of chopped up. You got Haight street proper and the Panhandle versus Cole Valley. And yeah, it’s a nuisance to deal with rif raff on Haight. But better riff raff than gangsters.

  3. Kenny,

    Good points. I still choose Hayes Valley. There’s just something about it. Especially Suppenküche, and of course you all should know by now I am a huge Blue Bottle Coffee fan. Those two establishments right there make it worth it for me, not to mention all the cool furniture stores popping up in the area. Haight is cool for the whole “Haight” vibe and don’t get me wrong it is a great area, especially with Cole Valley factored in, but Hayes gets my vote. It feels a little bit more urban, but definitely more “modern”…if that makes any sense.

  4. Hayes Valley. Hayes has really done a great job at revitalizing the neighborhood and it’ll only get better. Haight seems to be pretty stagnant.

  5. Even though they are in the same 6b district, Lower Haight and Hayes Valley are quite different. I think of Hayes Valley as the few blocks around Hayes/Gough… And the area around Haight/Filmore to be more of Lower Haight. So putting Upper Haight, Lower Haight, and Hayes Valley together, I’d live in Hayes Valley still (even though if I lived around Noc Noc I would hang out there every night — except on the weekends when the Bridge & Tunnel crowd takes over). The Hayes seems to attract some very unique stores — Gimme Shoes and Bulo, The Chinese antique shop, the original Fritz, etc. The sourcing in most of the retail stores are great. I find stuff I can’t easily find elsewhere. It’s “artsy”, compared to Haight’s “grungy”. I vote for Hayes, and the sales of the new condos in “the Hayes” complex on Gough and Page will be very telling…

  6. Hayes all the way. No question. Good shops and restaurants. I’m sorry but the Haight is dirty and just not appealing (lower that is).

  7. The Lower Haight is in the Hayes Valley real estate district. So if you are going by that map, I take the Haight Ashbury easily. Much cleaner, nicer and with less crime.

    Upper Haight is a little beat up, but it is not actually dangerous to walk around at night, like so much of Hayes Valley, especially the are around The Projects.

    There are a couple of nice spots in Hayes Valley but it is really only a couple of blocks.

  8. Being in the Haight means you have the best worlds: retail and restaurants on Haight, low density housing and all this within walking distance of Golden Gate Park, the Panhandle, Buena Vista Park. A bit of nature with urban living is why I choose the Haight over Hayes Valley any day!

  9. i would say cole valley but NOT haight proper, too grungey and it’s more dangerous at night now with street people holding citizens up at knife point etc

    for money of course

    and money goes for drugs

    also Hayes is near projects

    CV is best, safest etc

  10. i recently rented in cole valley near haight border

    now i wish i were closer into Cole valley as the haight is getting very funky with drunks in doorways at night and i have been intimadated by the guys with dogs to the point of feeling very afraid to go out past 7 pm! avoid the haight as far as Hayes it’s nice but i would feel too vulnerable there it’s close to alot of stuff on Buchannan etc

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