New Yorkers who wince every time they slip a $1,500 rent check under their super’s door should consider moving to Shanghai, or maybe Berlin.
According to a new study published on RentCafe, $1,500 will buy you three times more space in Shanghai than in Los Angeles and twice as much in Frankfurt. Meanwhile, rents per square foot are five times higher in San Francisco than they are in Berlin.
Rentcafe used data from the Global Power Index and data on price-to-square footage ratios that it had collected for a previous study to compare how much space $1,500 will buy in the world’s 30 “most magnetic” cities - i.e. cities that are popular tourism hubs.
The study’s authors presented their results in an interactive graphic that allows users to compare costs between cities. Some of the most expensive markets include San Francisco, Manhattan and Zurich. Among the least expensive are Istanbul, Shanghai and Berlin.
Manhattan, for example, offers only 277 square foot (26 m2) for $1,500. In Seoul, the same amount of money will rent you no less than a 1,389 square foot (129 m2) apartment, ample space for one person.
In San Francisco, $1,500 a month will rent you a 316 square foot apartment. Meanwhile, in Austria, $1,500 will rent you 1,009 square feet – almost three times as much. Rentcafe adds that, while SF has some of the most widely regarded cultural amenities in the world, Vienna - the City of Music – has plenty of entertainment options, from museums, vintage cinemas, live shows to recreational parks and hiking trails.
That is to say that one doesn't necessarily need to pay sky-high rents to live in a fun urban environment.