As bad as renting in Los Angeles is, buying a home can be worse.

Sure, we're America's least affordable rental market, and the increases keep coming.

But buying even a TLC-needing, median-priced home (which will now set you back nearly $600,000) requires nearly a six-figure family income. The median price of a house on the Westside has surpassed $1.2 million.

Real estate listings site Trulia this week released its latest “Rent vs. Buy Report,” which put L.A. on its top 10 list of cities where buying a home is not as economically reasonable as it is in the rest of the nation.

The site looked at March home and rental listings in 100 U.S. markets.

Buying still has its advantages. It's just that, in Los Angeles, the advantages are slimmer than elsewhere.

“Buying is 34.8 percent cheaper than renting on a national basis,” Trulia's report states.

But in L.A. that advantage is cut down to 27.1 percent.

That figure made us No. 10 on a top-10 list of cities with the “slimmest” economic advantage for buyers. The loser on the list was No. 1 Honolulu, with only a 14.1 percent advantage for home purchasers, Trulia found.

The report found that it's actually more expensive to buy than to rent in a few regional communities, including La Habra Heights (where it costs, on average, 8 percent more to buy) and Arcadia (2.7 percent more).

Nationally, New Orleans is the place you want to be if you want to enjoy a huge (52.3 percent) advantage when buying versus renting, Trulia says. The median home price there is … wait for it … $168,870.

But then you'd have to leave this wonderful, overpriced city.

Credit: Trulia

Credit: Trulia

LA Weekly