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New-home data show rural trend

Rustic living is on the rise. The recently releasd Annual Housing Survey, prepared by the US Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, said 35 percent of the nation's rural homes had been built in the decade from 1970-80. Percentagewise this was nearly double the proportion built in and around cities.

Some 79 percent, the report continued, of the rural homes were owner-occupied , compared with some 60 percent of those of city dwellers.

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Although average rents in rural areas were cheaper than rents in cities, the median gross rent rose faster in the countryside.