This Is the Least Affordable City in the World

Jan 26, 2016

New Yorkers may have made a sport out of complaining about high real estate prices, but according to the new survey they have it pretty good compared to other cities around the world.

The Demographia International Housing Affordability Survey, an annual report covering markets across the globe, found that Hong Kong's median housing price was 19 times its median income, rendering it "severely unaffordable." In fact, the city-state's median multiple, as the survey distinguishes the score, is the largest in the 12 years the survey has been performed. So Hong Kong isn't only the least affordable city right now -- it's possibly the least affordable city ever.

Sydney is currently the second most unaffordable city to live in, with a median multiple of 12.2, followed by Vancouver at 10.8. New York City isn't even in the top 10, though three U.S. cities are -- all in California (San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles).

The survey measured housing prices in 378 markets in nine countries, including the U.S., Canada, China (Hong Kong), Ireland, Japan, Singapore, New Zealand, Australia, and the United Kingdom. A "severely unaffordable" market is classified as anything with a median multiple of 5.1 or higher.

San Francisco is the most unaffordable market in the U.S., with a score of 9.4, while New York--where median real estate prices are kept in check thanks to relatively inexpensive properties in Staten Island and the Bronx--scored 5.9, seeming downright affordable.

Read next: MONEY's Best Places to Live

This is the sixth year in a row Hong Kong has been deemed the least affordable, though it's jump to 19 this year from 17 last year is a notable increase. Not that things are looking better elsewhere: Sydney's 12.2 score is the worst outside of Hong Kong in the survey's 12-year history.

Ireland was ranked as the most affordable place to live, with a 2.8 score.

The Most Unaffordable Cities in the World

CityMedian Multiple
Hong Kong19
Sydney12.2
Vancouver12.8
Auckland9.7
Melbourne9.7
San Jose9.7
San Francisco9.4
London8.5
San Diego8.1
Los Angeles8.1

The survey bemoans the state of housing prices across the globe, which it says have been rising much faster than income. "The resulting stagnation or even decline in household discretionary incomes is at least as much a threat to prosperity and job creation as the limited gross income gains," the report stated.

The good news? Of the 367 markets, 89 were deemed affordable, and 75 of those are in the United States. The most affordable markets according to the study are Buffalo, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Rochester, Pittsburgh, Detroit, Grand Rapids, Oklahoma City, St. Louis, Columbus, Indianapolis and Kansas City, all scoring median multiples under 3. Building your life in a wealth-building city has never seemed more practical.

Want even better living options? Check out MONEY's ranking of the best cities in the U.S.

MONEY may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.

Quotes delayed at least 15 minutes. Market data provided by Interactive Data. ETF and Mutual Fund data provided by Morningstar, Inc. Dow Jones Terms & Conditions: http://www.djindexes.com/mdsidx/html/tandc/indexestandcs.html. S&P Index data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. Terms & Conditions. Powered and implemented by Interactive Data Managed Solutions