When it comes to housing, the median price per square foot can vary wildly depending on whether you’re in a “hot” housing market like New York City or a less popular market like Cleveland. In a graphic created by PropertyShark, the research company puts these differences into perspective by showing, comparatively, how much home a person could buy for $200,000 – the median home price for the US.
In Cleveland, where the median price per square foot is $53, one could buy a 3,700 square foot home – enough to fit a few spare rooms. But in Manhattan, where that number is nearly $1,600 per square foot, you’d barely be able to afford a closet (at that rate, $200,000 would only get you 126 square feet).
San Francisco, Boston and San Jose are in a situation similar to Manhattan. The market is hot and prices are sky high.
But cities like San Antonio and Memphis have an affordability that’s closer to Cleveland. For $200,000, you could buy a 400 to 600 square foot home in Los Angeles and San Diego.
Or you could buy a home as large as 2,000 square feet in Nashville or Orlando, the latter of which can be seen as a kind of alternative to LA.
Or if you have your heart set on a major US city – but want something that’s slightly more affordable than LA – you could find a decent living in Miami for $200,000 (it would get you 835 square feet), Portland (773 square feet) and Chicago (1,102 square feet).
The American South has some of the best deals. If you don’t mind the heat, Austin (1,341 square feet) and Dallas (1,824 square feet) are strong candidates. For $200,000, you could live comfortably in a 1,119-square-foot home in Atlanta. In Charlotte, you could get 1,619-square feet.
Regardless, even in second- and third-tier cities, the revival in many urban real-estate markets means you’ll probably need more than the US median price to afford a home.
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