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The Most Expensive Cities in America

Thinking of buying a new home? Well, there are some locations you're going to want to avoid. Forbes magazine has compiled a list of the most expensive cities in America, where real estate costs are high and the expenses of living are through the roof. If you want to find a new spot to live, or a place to invest in property or rental housing, these are the cities that cost the most. First on the list is New York City. This doesn't come as a surprise; the Big Apple is known for its through-the-roof rental rates and housing prices. On average, a two-bedroom, unfurnished luxury apartment in Manhattan will cost you around $4,300 a month.

Second on Forbes' list is Los Angeles, California. This metropolis boasts high housing costs, and a long, expensive commute downtown. Most people live in suburbs surrounding Los Angeles and drive into the city every day, spending thousands of dollars in gas per year. The housing and rental costs are all incredibly expensive in this City of Angels. Both NYC and L.A. attract go-getter, outgoing people who want to live life near a big city. In a housing boom a few years back, many people moved out of the middle of the U.S. to these cities on the coast, hoping to enjoy life in the shadow of the skyscrapers. Yet when the costs caught up with them, these people started to drown in underwater mortgages and suffer from the high unemployment rate.

After Los Angeles, the next most expensive city is White Plains, New York. Following that is another large metropolis, San Francisco, California. Many people move here in hopes of enjoying the Northern California beauty, and then end up losing their homes to the high costs. Honolulu Hawaii also makes the list at number five. People who are hoping to live in paradise may want to rethink the option, especially with the costs of living there. Everything in Honolulu is more expensive, from homes to groceries, because of the amount of tourists who travel there.

Number six in this countdown is the city of Miami in Florida. People flock to this warm and sunny spot, but often have to pay a big price to stay there. Chicago, Illinois, is another very expensive city, with Boston, Massachusetts close on its heels, price-wise. Next up is Houston, Texas, which is followed by Washington D.C. In all of these cities, it is very rare for anyone to obtain a large piece of property. The cities are crammed with people, so everyone is given a minimal amount of property. Admittedly, if you need to live in one of these locations, you may want to rent an apartment instead.

A best-case scenario may be to live in a suburb outside of the city, where you can commute in every day. You will want to weigh this option with the gas prices that you will have to deal with. Sometimes it may not be worth it, especially if you will be in traffic everyday like Los Angeles residents are. As unemployment stays high and property values dive downward, it is harder and harder to Americans to make ends meet. City dwellers are no exception to this rule. However, you may have an easier time finding a job in the big city than you would in a small town elsewhere. This is one of the pros you will have to weigh against the cost of moving to a place where housing is hard to afford. Many times these cities are filled with fun nightlife, exciting events, and intriguing new activities. While they have a lot to offer, you'll want to take a look at your pocketbook before signing a lease or a house title.

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