Bay Briefing: ‘Shrinkflation’ in the Bay Area’s housing market

New data from real estate listings site Zillow shows that while sales of million-dollar homes has reached record levels in recent years, buyers are getting a lot less house for that $1 million than they used to, especially in the Bay Area.

Here, $1 million homes are considered less expensive. In the San Jose metro, the typical home value is more than $1.5 million and homes that cost $1 million or more make up 72% of the housing market. In the San Francisco metro, the typical home value is $1.46 million and $1 million-plus homes account for 62% of the market.

So, it stands to reason that buyers with $1 million to spend in the Bay Area are getting the least square footage, said Matt Kreamer, a data spokesman for Zillow.

“Just like toilet paper rolls and candy bars, houses have experienced ‘shrinkflation,’” he wrote in an email. “As the price of homes has skyrocketed over the past couple years, you just don’t get as much for your money as you used to.”

Read my story here.

• This new S.F. tower with condos and office space is a $1 billion bet on the city’s recovery.

Today’s forecast

Californians have endured scorching heat for what seems like an eternity, which in the Bay Area resulted in record temperatures including an all-time high of 117 in Fairfield on Tuesday and a record of 109 in San Jose on Tuesday.

So we could all definitely use a break.

Thankfully, Thursday signals the slow withering of the ridge of high pressure that’s resulted in this heat wave as the sea breeze pushes closer and closer to shore, writes newsroom meteorologist Gerry Díaz.

San Francisco residents on the west side will be the first to welcome cool, moist Pacific clouds, which will eventually spread along the rest of the coast. This will bring wind gusts of up to 25 mph at times, and afternoon highs in the upper 70s.

While the sea breeze will travel into the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, East Bay cities will still need to put up with the stubborn 100-plus-degree heat today. And active wildfires may bring some moderately bad air quality to the Bay Area.

Meteorologists say we’ll see a cooldown starting Friday and through the weekend, with temperatures declining further early next week.

• State power grid strained again Wednesday by extreme demand, braces for Thursday.

• California wildfire in Tahoe National Forest produces massive pyrocumulus cloud.

What to eat and drink

 Bay Briefing: Shrinkflation in the Bay Areas housing market

The bacon-wrapped burrito from Taco Mama Cuca in Oakland.

Courtesy Maria Marquez

When you think of bacon and burritos, a breakfast burrito probably comes to mind. But what about a bacon-wrapped burrito, or baconrito?

Yes, this is a dish that exists at an Oakland home restaurant called Tacos Mama Cuca. Owner Maria Marquez fills a pliable flour tortilla with asada, grilled mozzarella cheese, chorizo refried beans and Anaheim pepper, then wraps it in bacon and toasts it on a plancha until crisp.

Associate restaurant critic Cesar Hernandez tried the burrito and you can read his verdict here.

What to order at this buzzy S.F. pizza restaurant from a former Mister Jiu’s chef.

• Here’s seven of the best new restaurants in the Bay Area.

• This Napa wine’s secret ingredient? Straw. Yes, straw.

Around the Bay

 Bay Briefing: Shrinkflation in the Bay Areas housing market

The BART system is celebrating its 50th birthday.

Jessica Christian/The Chronicle

BART at 50: After decades of growth and tumult, the transit system is stuck in a massive financial hole.

A big spike: New data shows the homeless population in this East Bay city nearly doubled. Fifth Mission podcast: How California is rethinking homeless shelters.

Municipal property as reparations: This Bay Area city will be first to allow an Indigenous group the exclusive right to use city land.

Claim debunked: No, Newsom’s push for electric cars isn’t the cause of potential blackouts in California. Also: Newsom just signed fast-food worker protections into law. There’s already an effort to overturn them.

Judge ruling: Controversial S.F. supervisorial candidate Leanna Louie can’t be on the November ballot. Also: Alison Collins and her husband list S.F. home for $2.9 million despite unresolved building compliance violation.

A free-speech nightmare? Critics denounce California bill punishing doctors who spread COVID misinformation.

Taken into custody: Alameda deputy accused of “execution style” slaying of married couple surrenders to authorities.

Questions raised: She starred in an anti-Prop 27 ad — after her organization got $50,000 from a top anti-Prop. 27 funder.

100 years of the San Francisco Opera

 Bay Briefing: Shrinkflation in the Bay Areas housing market

San Francisco Opera conductor Eun Sun Kim at War Memorial Opera House in San Francisco.

Scott Strazzante/The Chronicle

Tonight the San Francisco Opera’s new season opens, which is particularly meaningful this year because the company is celebrating its centennial anniversary.

Today, only the legendary Metropolitan Opera in New York can claim a longer history among the nation’s principal opera companies, writes classical music critic Joshua Kosman.

“The San Francisco Opera is such a great and important company,” said Marc A. Scorca, CEO of the industry umbrella group Opera America. “Even at times when it was in a small city that seemed far away from the cultural center of the country, it’s a company that, in many ways, has punched above its weight.”

Revisit the S.F. Opera’s history through this timeline of the past 100 years, and the seven general directors who have shaped the artistic and financial direction of the company.

If you plan to attend a concert, here is everything you need to know including what’s new this year, the full season schedule, dress and etiquette, and COVID protocols.


• Netflix’s “Knives Out” sequel will open the 45th Mill Valley Film Festival. Here’s a look at the full lineup.

Bay Briefing is written by Kellie Hwang and Anna Buchmann and sent to readers’ email inboxes on weekday mornings. Sign up for the newsletter here, and contact the writers at and

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