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What can you buy for around $300,000?

Photo: Realtor.com

In Detroit, $300,000 can buy you six-bedroom home with stained glass windows and a wet bar. In New York, it can buy a low-amenity studio with a small kitchen.

Since the housing market started recovering two years ago, affordable real estate has rapidly diminished. In places like San Francisco, $300,000 will buy you almost nothing at all. The lowest-priced condos are priced at or above $350,000.

San Francisco's not alone here: More than half the homes in major American cities are currently unaffordable, based on an analysis by Zillow.

It's a stark contrast from the way the market looked in 2011 and 2012, when markets bottomed out. Even in more reasonably-priced places like Detroit and Miami, investors, developers and builders are snatching up inexpensive, distressed properties, remodeling them, and then re-selling and renting them out for higher prices. At this rate, affordable may soon mean homes that are just under half a million dollars in many cities.

So what can you buy for $300,000 these days? And how much have prices increased since the dark days of the housing crisis? Here are 10 properties you can buy for around $300,000 across the country.

"What Can You Buy" is a series that looks at what type of house and amenities you can get at particular price points in various locations across the U.S. Be sure to check out a few of the other posts in the series: What can you buy for $40,000?, What can you buy for $25,000 (or less)?, What can you buy for $100 million?

Atlanta

Photo: Realtor.com

This three-bedroom, two-bathroom, brick bungalow is on the market in the Edgewood area of Atlanta for $275,000. It comes with a modern kitchen, two deck areas and several parking spots. The property was last sold in 2009, just as the market turned sour, for $126,500. It was re-listed at $225,000 in 2011, but didn't sell at that price point and was delisted a few months later.

That's not surprising, given that cheap foreclosures were flooding Atlanta's market at the time and even more homeowners were underwater and on the edge of losing their homes. The market has since turned around, but it's still slow to recover. Sales are still down by 22.5 percent year over year, according to Trulia.com. While prices haven't exploded back to their pre-crisis levels, homes in this area are going for twice what they were worth when the market tumbled.

Chicago

Photo: Realtor.com

This three-bedroom, two-bathroom, modern condo in the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago is currently listed at $299,900. It features a luxury master bathroom with double marble sinks and a Jacuzzi bath tub, fireplace and exposed brick walls. The home's price hasn't grown much in three years: It was listed for as little as $275,000 in 2011.

The condo's stagnant prices track similarly to Chicago's relatively stagnant growth post-crisis. Last month's Zillow Chicago market forecast reported that it could take 11.7 years before the city's home values return to what they were before the housing crash. But the outlook isn't entirely bleak: Chicago's values have increased by 8.8 percent in the last year.

Dallas

Photo: Realtor.com

Located in the Ridgewood Park area of Dallas, this three-bedroom ranch house is on the market for $259,900. The home has 1.5 bathrooms, new plumbing and kitchen appliances and a large backyard. Though the price has dropped since it was initially listed at $314,900 in February, the asking price has gone up significantly since it was listed in June 2011 at $189,000.

Now is not a bad time to sell your home in Dallas. Prices are up 12.4 percent since last year, and while this can raise affordability issues, the current median home value of $113,200 is a significant improvement from June 2011, when the median home value in the region was $96,000 and dropping, according to Zillow.

Detroit

Photo: Realtor.com

This six-bedroom Detroit colonial is on the market for $329,995. The home's numerous features include several stained glass doors and windows, a separate suite with a bathroom and sitting area, a pantry area, an attic, a wet bar and a dog run. The home didn't find any buyers at a reduced price of $299,000 in 2011, and was taken off the market until 2014.

Most homebuyers hoping to purchase a 4,700-square-foot property aren't looking in Detroit these days. The city is full of small, single-family homes that are generally selling cheaply if they sell at all.

New York City

Photo: Realtor.com

For $289,000, you can own this Manhattan studio at The Broadmoor. It has one bathroom, hardwood flooring, a doorman and concierge and a landscaped roof deck. Apartment prices in the building remained relatively stable throughout the housing crisis, and recently started listing for slightly higher than years past.

Most buyers know that you can't get a lot of space for a little money in New York City. The popularity and population of the city keeps home prices consistently high and square footage to a minimum. For around $300,000, you can expect to move in to a one-bedroom or a studio like this one -- if you can find one at all. The average price per square foot in the city is $1,396, compared to $214 in Chicago.

Kansas City

Photo: Realtor.com

You can buy this three-bedroom, two-bathroom Kansas City bungalow in the Rockhill Heights area for $260,000. It offers a basement with a utility room, a kitchen pantry, a walk-in closet and a two-car garage. It was listed at $249,999 in 2011, but after a price reduction it was taken off the market. Since it was listed at $275,000 earlier this month, the price has now gone down by 5.45 percent.

For the neighborhood, this property is a steal. The average listing price in the area is around $2.7 million. The divided Kansas City real estate market is currently experiencing both highs and lows, depending on where you look. Overall, home sales and prices are slowly and steadily climbing upward.

New Orleans

Photo: Realtor.com

This four-bedroom, 2.5-bathroom shotgun house in the Mid-City district of New Orleans is for sale at $259,900. It was built in 1888 and has been renovated with new windows and plumbing, air conditioning and an alarm system. The home has been on and off the market several times in the past several years. It was listed at $137,500 in 2011 before landing at $299,900 earlier this month.

The current median listing price for homes in New Orleans is $185,000. Now, according to Freddie Mac's new Multi-Indicator Market Index, New Orleans' real estate has returned to the "stable range."

Miami

Photo: Realtor.com

This three-bedroom, 2.5-bathroom condo in the Kendall neighborhood of Miami is currently listed for $250,000. As part of the Palace Royal complex, it offers access to a community pool and garden. Features include an attached one-car garage, a bar with built-in cabinet storage, a kitchen island and even a bidet in the master bathroom. The property's price has gone up by more than 60 percent since it was sold for $150,000 in January of 2011.

Miami real estate prices are rising quickly, but 90 percent of buyers are from other countries, according to Integra Realty Resources. Many of them are investors, and they're contributing to a condo boom that has some real estate analysts and Miami residents concerned about overblown valuations.

Phoenix

Photo: Realtor.com

For $298,000, you can get a five-bedroom, four-bathroom house in Phoenix. This property features a separate guest house, private pool, game room, fireplace and view of the mountains. In May 2011, it was listed for $295,000 -- a similar price. It has gone off and on the market seven times since then, with its highest price increase occurring in June 2013, when it was listed at $375,000.

The home's pricing shifts reflect a larger housing trend in the city: Volatility. According to a 2013 Zillow and Bloomberg report, 22.2 percent of homes are at risk of losing value today.

San Francisco

Photo: Realtor.com

This 835-square-foot, two-bedroom apartment in the Bayview neighborhood of San Francisco just sold this week for $304,010. The unit was set aside by the Mayor's Office to provide a more manageable option for first-time homebuyers. It has been listed and delisted seven times since April 2010. In March 2011, the price was $224,311.

Housing in San Francisco is notoriously expensive -- median home prices are around $1 million -- and the average price per square foot has gone up 16.4 percent since last year. Bayview is on the cheap end, but redevelopment efforts in the area have sparked new demand these days.

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