2012-2013 expectations for San Francisco professional sports teams

People choose to move to large metro areas for many reasons. Cities with booming housing markets offer discount property listings and quality homes situated within minutes of entertainment, dining and shopping options. However, one thing real estate experts cannot predict is the positive impact successful sports teams have on a population's quality of life.

Homes for sale in the Bay Area are situated near a number of historic sports franchises, and local residents always enjoy rooting for the home team. This season, check out some of the following teams if you have just moved to the San Francisco area.

San Francisco 49ers
Back in the 1980s, Joe Montana led this NFL team to four Super Bowl championships, and in 1994, Steve Young hoisted the Lombardi Trophy, giving the franchise a total of five world titles.

The 49ers began the 2012-2013 season with a bang, defeating the feared Green Bay Packers by 30-22, and many sports pundits are predicting a return to the big game. The offense, led by veterans Frank Gore, Vernon Davis and Randy Moss, is finally at the same level as the team's dominant defense.

San Francisco Giants
As the final month of the regular MLB season begins, the Giants are currently sitting atop the National League West division, guaranteeing a playoff berth. Barring an unprecedented collapse, it looks like this baseball club will be making a run for the NL pennant. Everyone is calling the Washington Nationals World Series favorites, but don't discount the Giants - if Melky Cabrera and Buster Posey keep slugging while Matt Cain continues to pitch wins, the Giants could be back to the World Series for the second time in three years (the team last won in 2010).

San Jose Sharks
While this resident NHL team plays to the south of San Francisco proper, the lack of a regional rival makes many local NHL fans support the Sharks. Led by Joe Thorton, one of the elite players in the league, the Sharks have made the NHL playoffs for eight seasons in a row.

Though they lost in the first round to the St. Louis Blues last year, the Sharks have been busy during the offseason, adding veteran defenseman Brad Stuart and forward Bracken Kearns. With a revamped offense and defense, the Sharks should be a powerhouse in the Western Conference this season.

With all three teams poised as potential championship contenders, it is certainly an exciting time to live in and around the Bay Area.