The country’s most expensive cities — places like San Francisco, Boston and New York — command a much higher price per square foot than the cheapest cities. A new infographic by lending company TitleMax visualizes what $500,000 will get you in America’s 30 largest cities, and the results are stunning.
Half-a-million dollars will land you 5,952 square feet (aka a mansion) in Cleveland, where the median price per square foot is just $84. Compare that to San Francisco, the nation’s most expensive place to live, where the median price per square foot is a staggering $507. You’ll get about 986 square feet in the City by the Bay — a difference of 4,966 square feet from Cleveland. For perspective, a normal-sized bedroom or living room is usually between 300 and 400 square feet.
Not surprisingly, New York is among the most expensive places, only trailing San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego and Boston, respectively. The median price per square foot is $234 in New York, so you can get about 2,137 square feet of living space with your $500,000. Significantly more than San Francisco, but less than half of what you’d get in Cleveland.
The prices differ greatly by region: the Northeast is the most expensive place to live, at $149.25 per square foot, while the South is the cheapest, at $87.80 per square foot, according to TitleMax. Among the cheapest cities are places in the Midwest and South, including Houston, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh and Detroit.
Of course, people residing in the most expensive cities are usually given higher salaries or cost-of-living adjustments to ease the burden of living in a (overpriced) broom closet.
Here’s the top 30 U.S. cities and where they rank: