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California has the most expensive rental markets in 27 of the 28 top cities in the U.S. for median rent, 35 of the top 50, and 68 of the top 100. A new ranking showed that San Ramon had the highest median gross rent in 2016 at $2,348.

A new ranking of the highest median rents in 20 U.S. cities with populations of 65,000 people or more, based on 2016 Census data, show that Cambridge, Massachusetts was the only city outside of California to make the cut. Bloomberg crunched the data on highest median rents in a variety of ways, including median gross rent of one-bedroom rental dwellings. By that metric, California had 17 out of the 20 cities listed. Sunnyvale, California was number one with a median gross rent of $2,220 for one-bedroom rentals.

[Some] expressed disbelief that San Francisco or New York -- or some other city with a higher profile than San Ramon -- didn't rank in the top 20. They have something of a point: As indicated in the above table, only 28.5 percent of San Ramon residents live in rental housing, and a lot of those rentals are in large single-family homes. Its median rent isn't perfectly comparable to that of bigger, more dense cities like San Francisco or Sunnyvale.

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