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What Can You Rent for $20,000 a Month?

Many of you may have seen the show "Selling New York," where some of the wealthiest in the world search for the New York City home of their dreams.

A good number of them are looking for a "pied-à -terre" where they can hang their hats while in town on business but these jet-setters don't want the long-term commitment of home ownership. Instead of buying that gorgeous penthouse with views of the city, these rich and sometimes-famous choose to rent, making payments every month that are more than many people make in a year. It sounds crazy, but when you've got millions to spend the world is your real estate market.

We've already figured out what you can buy for $5 to $10 million and it's pretty spectacular: More than 12,000 square feet in Orlando, 10,000 square feet in L.A. and just over 5,000 square feet in Aspen. And while one of these homes may be the stuff your dreams are made of, it might also be just one of many homes in a multi-millionaire's real estate portfolio.

Assuming a well-to-do buyer put 20 percent down on a $5 million dollar home and took out a 30 year fixed rate mortgage â€" something that's unlikely, considering most of the super wealthy pay in cash â€" the mortgage payment would hover around $20,000 a month. And while that's a fortune to most of us, it's a drop in a bucket to someone with that kind of budget.

So what do you get when you spend your would-be mortgage payment on a luxury rental? Quite a bit, it turns out.

All photos courtesy

Beverly Hills, California

When most people think of swanky they think of Beverly Hills. Home to unrivaled shopping on Rodeo Drive, amazing restaurants and loads of museums and cultural attractions, it's no wonder so many of Hollywood's rich and famous settle down here.

Situated between ocean beaches and gorgeous foothills, Beverly Hills is convenient to everything Los Angeles has to offer. For $20,000 a month, the richest of renters can have the amenities of home and the short-term convenience of leasing.

This gorgeous estate features 6 bedrooms and 6 baths, a heated pool, high-end finishes throughout and more than 6,000 square feet of living space. It's the perfect place for a multi-millionaire to call home for a few months.

Los Angeles, California

Home to historic landmarks like the Kodak Theatre, Mann's Chinese Theatre and the famous Hollywood sign, L.A. is the perfect place for a wealthy cinephile looking for a second home near the entertainment industry.

Los Angeles residents have the best of everything right outside their door: world-class dining, tons of unique shops and great weather that is perfect for enjoying outdoor activities. That convenience doesn't come cheap, but many average Americans can find something in their price range somewhere in the city.

If you're über-wealthy and average just won't do, check out this enormous mansion listed at "only" $19,800 per month. You'll get a little more square footage for your money here than you would in Beverly Hills: This secluded estate offers around 9,000 square feet of living space. In addition to gorgeous finishes and a 600-foot-long private drive, this home has views of the Hollywood Hills from almost every room.

Dallas, Texas

Dallas is one of the most popular destinations for business travel and home to a number of corporate headquarters, making it a prime location for a billionaire to lease a short-term pad. They would be in good company: Dallas is home to 17 billionaires!

There is more to the city than famous barbeque and the Dallas Cowboys. Residents can enjoy the bustling Arts District downtown, one of the beautiful city parks or an indie music venue in the Deep Ellum entertainment district. No matter what your interests, Dallas has something for everyone.

So if you're a billionaire searching for your own little slice of this big city, rent this Mediterranean-style villa for $16,000 a month (with $4,000 left over for catering in the fab kitchen). With over 11,000 square feet, 6 bedrooms and 7 baths on 1.2 acres, you'll have more than enough room for lavish parties and entertaining. On nice summer nights, relax and enjoy more than 1,500 square feet of terrace space.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago is known as the "Second City," but residents and visitors of this Midwestern mecca might disagree with that sentiment. The city is incredibly diverse and offers tons to do in each one of its many neighborhoods â€" shopping, dining, nightlife and more.

Even though it's a big cement city, Chicago has plenty to do outdoors. Take a stroll on the lakefront path, an architectural boat tour down the Chicago River or a walk through the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum and gardens.

Like New York and L.A., the Windy City has its fair share of multi-millionaires who lead a lavish lifestyle. An extravagant abode that meets the standards of even the most discerning buyer does not come cheap, even if that home happens to be a rental. For $20,000 a month, this 3 bedroom, 4 bathroom condo on famous East Lake Shore Drive can be yours. The detailed woodwork, fabulous terrace and enormous windows are just as elegant now as they were in 1913, the year the building was built.

New York, New York

When most Americans think wealth and business, they think New York. The Big Apple is home to more than 50 Fortune 500 headquarters and is a worldwide influence on banking and the financial markets. Plenty of people from all over the world come to New York to visit or make it their home, and some of those people are multi-millionaires in town for long-term business trips.

In addition to the vast number of business opportunities, New York offers plenty to do for fun. Take in a Broadway show, shop on Fifth Avenue or explore one of the city's many boroughs. With all the economic and recreational opportunities in New York, it's no wonder the ultra-rich love to make this their home, even if only for a short while.

There's something for every taste in the $20,000 and up price range, but much of the high end real estate is in Manhattan. Take this beautiful West End Avenue apartment, for example. The 3 bed, 4 bath layout with a renovated kitchen and original details is the perfect blend of modern and vintage, giving the lessee all the comforts of home with the convenience of New York City living.

If money was no object, where would you live?
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Ilyce R. Glink is the author of several books, including 100 Questions Every First-Time Home Buyer Should Ask and Buy, Close, Move In!. She blogs about money and real estate at ThinkGlink.comand The Equifax Personal Finance Blog, and is Chief Content Strategist at, a community for real estate investors.
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