Trip Advisor has put out its list of the top 25 travel destinations in the US and, while looking through the list, I realized maybe the reason they’re such popular places to visit is because the average family can’t actually afford to live in them. Now when I say ‘average family’ I mean the average family size of 3.14 people per household according to the 201o census. When I refer to an average home, I’m also going off the 2010 census evaluation of a single family residence being an average of 2,392 square feet. Many of us live in a lot less space with a lot more people, while others live in a lot more space with fewer people, but for the sake of this article we’re going with census averages. Okay? Okay.
So what might it cost to live downtown in some of the most popular tourist and travel destinations in the United States in a 2,500 square foot single family residence? Here’s a look at the top ten.
To Visit New York 1 of 20
New York is one of my favorite places to visit (also the most expensive). There isn't anywhere else like it, but I could never live there (for reasons beyond the expense).
New York City Average Hotel Cost: $281
To Live in New York 2 of 20
This 2,700 sq. ft. 5 bed/4 bath home on New York's Upper West Side will only run you $3.4 million dollars.
No big deal.
Chump change, really.
To Visit San Francisco 3 of 20
I love you San Francisco -so much to see, so much to eat, so much to do. It can be expensive and stressful to get around (THE HILLS!), but well worth the journey.
San Francisco Average Hotel Cost: $158
To Live in San Francisco 4 of 20
This 4 bedroom 3.5 bath 2,600 sq. ft. home in San Francisco is only $1,350,000.
Bonus? 3 car garage, New York didn't have a 3 car garage.
To Visit Chicago 5 of 20
If you like big cities but don't love the big expense of New York, Chicago is the place for you. Walkable, good public transit, and plenty to see, eat and do. (My favorite hotel is Hotel Allegro.)
Chicago Average Hotel Cost: $119
To Live in Chicago 6 of 20
Great news! This 3 bedroom 2 bath 2,500 square foot penthouse in Chicago has just been reduced! Only $895,000.
It sure is pretty. I could manage living here.
To Visit Las Vegas 7 of 20
To Live in Las Vegas 8 of 20
This 4 bedroom, 3 bath, 2,500 sq. foot home in Las Vegas, Nevada will run you $224,900. Not bad! I mean, if you don't mind oppressive heat with nary a seasonal change in sight.
To Visit Orlando 9 of 20
To Live in Orlando 10 of 20
This 4 bedroom, 2 bath 2,500 sq. ft. home in Orlando is quite the bargain, at only $74,900 you could afford to go to the beach every weekend. The bad news is the sale is pending. Our loss.
To Visit DC 11 of 20
History is ALL OVER Washington. There is SO MUCH to see in such a small area, and all of it is fascinating. (I also like to play "which tourist is actually a secret service agent?" while on the Mall.)
Washington DC Average Hotel Cost: $140
To Live in DC 12 of 20
This 4 bedroom 3.5 bath 2,500 square foot townhome will run you $1,299,00, without a garage.
To Visit Boston 13 of 20
To Live in Boston 14 of 20
This is it. I'll take this one. This 2,550 sq. ft. 3 bedroom 2.5 bath home in Boston. LOOK AT HOW PRETTY IT IS. I mean, ignore the $2,999,999 price tag and just enjoy how lovely it is.
To Visit Los Angeles 15 of 20
LA is also not my place. While New York may be busy and expensive, I can at least walk around or take public transportation to get around. This is not really an option in LA. Traffic is everywhere and traffic is terrible. Driving in LA will push your patience to the edge. (It is always sunny and warm though!)
I really like the Culver Hotel.
Los Angeles Average Hotel Cost: $116
To Live in Los Angeles 16 of 20
4 bedrooms, 3 baths, 2,500 square feet, the smell of Hollywood and the all the traffic LA can muster for only $1,699,00.
To Visit Honolulu 17 of 20
To Live in Honolulu 18 of 20
This one overlooks the beach from its own private island. 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath and 2,500 square feet. You can have my $697,000 Hawaii, who cares that a gallon of milk is $6. THE BEACH.
To Visit New Orleans 19 of 20
To Live in New Orleans 20 of 20
7 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms in 2,500 square feet for $425,00? Those have got to be some tiny bedrooms. The real estate in New Orleans varies the most, with some rundown wooden houses for $40K and some elaborate mansions (the same size) for over a million.
Find more of Casey’s writing on her blog moosh in indy or her Babble Voices site Shutterlovely. She’s also available on twitter, facebook, flickr and Instagram. If you can’t find her any of those places? Check the couch, she’s probably taking a nap.