Silicon Valley has just been worsted by the Big Apple in the race for becoming the most expensive city to live in the U.S.

Most Expensive City in the U.S.

San Francisco and New York City are the two more expensive cities to live in the United States, the former often coming on top with median rent costs around $3,490 for a one bedroom apartment and NYC following closely at $3,280. But a new research shows that the Big Apple may have finally gained an upper hand over Silicon Valley. In comparison to other cities in the United States, Manhattan is the most expensive place to live in with apartment prices as high as $1,773 per square foot.

Manhattan’s real estate value is the highest in the US

Meanwhile, prices per square footage have fallen to $1,185 in San Francisco. Boston comes third on the list of most expensive cities with $751 per square foot for an average apartment. Researchers went a step further and analyzed Manhattan’s apartments with the lowest price per square foot in comparison to similar properties in San Francisco. Manhattan came out as the most expensive city once again. Even more surprising was the finding that some two-bedroom apartments in NYC were as expensive as large hillside home in California.

Data from the study also showed that the cheapest apartment in Manhattan could cost around $437 per square foot whereas a similar apartment in San Francisco costs $359. Similarly, the priciest apartments in cities across the U.S. felt cheap in comparison to Manhattan’s priciest property overlooking central park which costs $4,298 per square foot. The stunning apartment, spanning over 5417 square feet, is currently being offered on the market for $56 million.

How Expensive Is NYC?

Apartments for rent in Upper Manhattan

New York City is undoubtedly one of the most expensive places to live, even after taking rent out of the equation. In comparison to the country’s average overall consumer price index of 75.94, NYC’s CPI is 100 (excluding apartment prices and rent).

Renting a tiny apartment in the cheaper boroughs in Manhattan like Queens and Astoria can cost around $2,000 per month whereas a family-sized property on the Upper East Side can cost $20,000. But it isn’t just the price point that stops people from living in New York. It is also one of the most densely populated cities in the U.S. with a vacancy rate of 2 percent. Even finding a place to live here can be near-impossible, let alone finding something that is reasonably priced and conveniently located.

It’s not just the housing market in NYC that is expensive. Statistics show that almost every item sold in supermarkets and grocery stores are 10 percent more expensive than in Chicago. Items like bottled water and beer are more modestly priced because of intense competition. Dining out in New York City can also be an expensive affair. According to statistics, a three-course meal for two people at an average mid-priced restaurant can cost you $75 whereas, in Chicago, the prices are 36 percent lower.

All the same, New York’s extremely saturated restaurant market means that you have plenty of inexpensive options to choose from as well if you know where to look for good deals and promotions. The city currently boasts a restaurant count of 16,000 full-service food businesses as well as an additional 18,780 counter-service takeout joints. Combined, that’s more restaurants than in any other city in the U.S.

Expensive But Worth It

Despite being the most expensive city in the country, Americans dream of living in New York and those who already live there never want to leave. The city offers a range of activities and sites that can’t be found anywhere else. You can try a different restaurant every day and still not run out of options for the next 10 years. There are plenty of options for window-shopping (or real shopping, if you can afford it) and there is a museum on every corner.

While the city has an extremely high cost of living, there are plenty of great opportunities for finding your dream job or starting a business that makes the city worth living in. Of course, having a high income can making living here much easier. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average household income in New York stands at $65,793 in 2018 in comparison to Chicago’s $60,584.

What is your favorite city to live in?






7 Comments

  1. What more do you expect from NY? It’s the financial capital of the country, of course it’s expensive to stay there!

  2. Callie Blackstone on

    Although California is also an expensive state to live, I’d rather be there since I love hitting the beaches!

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