The 1883 Victorian home, center, made famous by the television show "Full House." Eric Risberg/AP

If you want to live like a classic TV family, prepare to pay up.

Superfans of the late-1980s family comedy Full House (or its weirdly popular Netflix reanimation, Fuller House) can now explore the real-world limits of their sitcom love by renting out the three-bedroom Victorian in San Francisco that was used in exterior shots on the show: It’s available for almost $14,000 per month, according to an online listing. (And it comes with a gardener.)

The home’s stratospheric rent, and the growing improbability that its TV residents could afford to live in it, have now made it something of a poster child for the Bay Area’s white-hot housing boom. (It was listed for sale this spring at $4.15 million and later sold for $4 million.) But the Tanner family home isn’t the only classic sitcom domicile to experience some radical value inflation. Take a gander at Richie Cunningham’s family’s stately Colonial: In Happy Days, this was supposed to be the home of a circa-1955 Milwaukee hardware store owner. When it last sold, in 1995, the six-bedroom home (which is actually in L.A.’s Mid-Wilshire neighborhood) went for a still-attainable $422,000. Zillow’s current value estimate is a little north of $3 million.

Similar stories can be found up and down the TV dial. Mike Brady’s North Hollywood rancher was listed for $2 million in 2008. Happy Days spin-off Mork and Mindy, set in Boulder, Colorado, prominently featured exteriors of an ornate Queen Anne-style home—a historic private residence known as the McAllister House—that’s valued by Zillow today at a tad under $2 million. That same price should also get you in the door of Mary Tyler Moore’s bachelorette pad in Minneapolis, which is on the market right now (and looks spectacular) for $1,995,000.

Relatively few spunky career gals could afford to live in Mary Richards’ apartment in Minneapolis on a solo salary these days. (Realtor.com)

Perhaps you are saying: “Hey, I like classic television, but I do not have $2 million.”

Then you may have to settle for the blue-collar world of 1990s hit Roseanne, where a modest bungalow in Evansville, Indiana, provided the exterior for the Conner family home. It’s a relative bargain in the world of sitcom housing, selling for $129,000 in 2013, complete with knotty pine-paneled basement rumpus room. Still, the authentically downscale environs of Roseanne remain something of an anomaly in the cities of American television, where striving young urbanites reside in ludicrously vast apartments and even Archie Bunker’s place in Queens is worth about $600,000.

The message: Even as most U.S. metropolitan areas continue to report shrinking shares of middle-income residents, on TV, at least, we’re all still comfortably middle class.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. photo: a commuter looks at a small map of the London Tube in 2009
    Maps

    Help! The London Tube Map Is Out of Control.

    It’s never been easy to design a map of the city’s underground transit network. But soon, critics say, legibility concerns will demand a new look.

  2. photo: a Tower Records Japan Inc. store in Tokyo, Japan.
    Life

    The Bankrupt American Brands Still Thriving in Japan

    Cultural cachet, licensing deals, and density explain why Toys ‘R’ Us, Tower Records, Barneys, and other faded U.S. retailers remain big across the Pacific.

  3. Transportation

    How Media Coverage of Car Crashes Downplays the Role of Drivers

    Safety advocates have long complained that media outlets tend to blame pedestrians and cyclists who are hit by cars. Research suggests they’re right.

  4. Life

    Suburban Jobs Are Growing Fastest, But Urban Jobs Pay More

    New labor data show that the suburbs have the fastest job growth in the U.S. But we shouldn’t assume the future of employment will be suburban.

  5. photo: A vacant home in Oakland that is about to demolished for an apartment complex.
    Equity

    Fix California’s Housing Crisis, Activists Say. But Which One?

    As a controversy over vacancy in the Bay Area and Los Angeles reveals, advocates disagree about what kind of housing should be built, and where.

×