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NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) - California and New York are home to the most expensive ZIP codes in the United States, according to a new index.
Duarte, a suburb northeast of Los Angeles, boasts the priciest ZIP code in the country, 91008, where the median cost of a home is about $4.3 million, followed by Atherton, 94027, and Rolling Hills, 90274, which are also in California.
"The ascent of Duarte -- for which the 91008 ZIP was created since 2000, to accommodate a growing population -- shows that wealth is still drawn to big cities, even if their post-bubble house prices have dropped," Forbes.com, which published the index of the 500 top ZIP codes, said.
"More than half the locations in our ranking of America's 500 most expensive ZIP codes are in California," it added.
The five digit postal codes have been used by the United States Postal Service for decades to improve mail delivery.
Alpine, which is across the Hudson River from New York City's 10014 which came in 5th place, is the only New Jersey ZIP code 07620 in the top 10. It dropped from first place last year to fourth on the current list.
The ranking is based on data collected by Altos Research on more than 20,000 ZIP codes in the United States. The data includes the median home price, average days on the market, median price change, median household income and inventory.
The median home price in each of the top 10 ZIP codes is $3.1 million or more, compared to $455,580 for 33154 in Miami Beach in Florida, which was ranked 500th.
Beverly Hills 90210, which gained fame when it became the subject of a hit U.S. TV series about a group of rich high school kids, came in 6th.
"The median price of America's high-end homes continues to slide, but not as fast as it did last year. Our index of 500 high-end ZIP codes saw the average home price fall five percent, to $1.2 million, from the same time last year," according to Forbes.com.
The full list can be found on www.forbes.com/zips.