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Manhattan: Rent
Manhattan: Rent
Median home price: $1.31 million
Median annual rent: $42,370
Price-to-rent ratio: 31

Manhattan has, by far, the most out of whack buy-rent ratio in the nation. In this city, it almost always makes more sense to rent. But, rents are gaining, according to Jonathan Miller, of Miller Samuel, a leading appraisal firm.

"The unemployment rate is going down and rents respond more quickly than home prices to changes in unemployment," he said. That means rents firm up quicker than prices

Manhattan is a tiny island -- just 23 square miles -- that's home to more than 1.6 million people plus a dense concentration of commercial buildings. The limited space has driven up the cost of all real estate. And because there's practically nowhere left to build, supplies are low and demand is high.

NEXT: Miami: Buy
Last updated January 25 2011: 8:31 AM ET
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