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South of Market is a historic San Francisco downtown district with museums, a vibrant nightlife and a desirable mix of loft buildings and high-rise luxury condominiums.

It also happens to be the most expensive neighborhood in the U.S., as measured by price per square foot, according to a new analysis of December 2023 home listings by online real estate portal Homes.com.

The cost per square foot in South of Market — also known as SoMa — is $5,415. That’s around 2,000% higher than the overall U.S. average of $244.

Here are the 15 most expensive U.S. neighborhoods, ranked by price per square foot:

  1. South of Market, San Francisco: $5,415
  2. Northwest Auburn, Auburn, California: $4,416
  3. Old Town Carpinteria, Carpinteria, California: $4,129
  4. Downtown Bellevue, Bellevue, Washington: $3,619
  5. Port Royal, Naples, Florida: $3,375
  6. Aqualane Shores, Naples, Florida: $3,132
  7. Stinson Beach, California: $2,988
  8. Star, Palm & Hibiscus Islands, Miami Beach, Florida: $2,861
  9. Crystal Cove, Newport Beach, California: $2,771
  10. Casa del Lago, Palm Beach, Florida: $2,754
  11. West Village, New York City: $2,680
  12. Metropolitan Hill, New York City: $2,537
  13. Fisher Island, Miami: $2,511
  14. Hudson Square, New York City: $2,401
  15. Jupiter Island, Florida: $2,394

A downtown San Francisco neighborhood ranking first probably isn’t surprising, as the city has some of the highest home prices in the country. This is largely due to a scarcity of land and a large number of highly paid professionals who live in the city, which has driven up home prices. The median home price in San Francisco is $1,180,000, per Homes.com data.

Just over 120 miles away is Northwest Auburn, California, the second-highest priced U.S. neighborhood at $4,416 per square foot.

Nestled in the Sierra Nevada foothills, Auburn is a historic Gold Rush-era town within a reasonable commuting distance to Sacramento, making it a desirable place to live, especially for those who enjoy outdoor activities like hiking or kayaking.

The Old Town neighborhood of the beachside California town of Carpinteria comes in third in the rankings, with a cost per square foot of $4,129. Surrounded by mountains, space is limited in Carpinteria, which has helped to keep home prices high. Homes in the historic Old Town district have a median cost of $905,500, per Homes.com.

In contrast, the Homewood North neighborhood in Pittsburgh ranks last amongst the 20,000 neighborhoods examined for the study, with homes costing $29 per square foot. An economically depressed area of the city, Homewood North has a declining population.

The rankings are based on average price per square foot data for U.S. homes using Homes.com listing data. Neighborhoods without at least 10 sales in the previous 12 months were not included. Five states were excluded due to lack of data as well: Montana, South Dakota, Wyoming, North Dakota and Virginia.

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