US Income Extremes in 2017

In this article we’ll highlight income extremes across the US and identify the states, counties, places and ZIP codes with the highest and lowest median household income and average household income. The national median and national average income level is provided for a frame of reference.

The data is based on July 1, 2017 demographic estimates.1

US HOUSEHOLD INCOME
The median annual household income in the United States was $56,124 and the average annual household income was $80,875. Half of the US households were above the median value and half were below it.

STATES
Maryland had the highest median household income with $76,754 per year while Mississippi had the lowest with $40,486.

New Jersey had the highest average household with $104,717 while Mississippi had the lowest with $57,179.

COUNTIES/COUNTY EQUIVALENTS
Loudoun County, VA had the highest median household income with $124,885 while Quitman County, MS had the lowest with $23,279.

Falls Church, Virginia had the highest average household income of $161,930 while Hancock County, TN had the lowest with $34,086.

Note that Falls Church, VA is one of 39 independent Virginia cities that are not part of any county. For statistical purposes, the US Census Bureau considers independent cities county equivalents.

PLACES
The “Places” database includes incorporated cities, towns and villages as well as census designated places (CDPs).

Census Designated Places are the statistical counterparts of incorporated places, and are delineated by the US Census Bureau to provide data for settled concentrations of population that are identifiable by name but are not legally incorporated under the laws of the state in which they are located.

When we rank places based on median household income, there are 78 places that appear to be “tied” for first place based on available data for July 1, 2017.

This apparent tie for first place is due to the fact that the reported median household income for these 78 places are “top-coded” at $200,001. In economics and statistics, a top-coded data observation is one for which data points whose values are above an upper bound are censored.

New York has 24 places in the list of the top 78 cities, towns and CDPs with the highest median income level. California comes in second with 12 places, Maryland is third with 10 places, Texas is fourth with 9 places and Virginia is fifth with 6 places. The complete list of the top (and bottom) 200 places in the US based on median household income is readily available on www.HomeTownLocator.com.

The Town of Chevy Chase Village, MD has the highest average household income with $336,107 and the Town of Tchula, MS has the lowest with $22,293.

Note that there is one place, a CDP, with a lower average household income than Tchula, but this CDP is a college campus and the average household income of college students living in group housing is not particularly relevant for the purposes of this exercise.

ZIP CODES
When we rank ZIP Codes by median household income, there are 27 that seem to be tied for first place. This apparent tie is again based on the fact that the median household income is top-coded at $200,001.

California has 8 ZIP Codes with a median household over $200,000, New York is a close second with 7 ZIP Codes in the top-tier. Massachusetts and New Jersey tie for third place with 3 each.

If we exclude all ZIP Codes that are immediately adjacent to college campuses, then Rochester, NY 14604 with a median household income of $11,862 appers to be the ZIP code with the lowest median income.

Short Hills, NJ 07078 has the highest average household income with $306,267.

The small community of Trosper, KY 40995 with 88 residential addresses, 48 PO Box addresses and 5 business addresses appears to be the ZIP Code with the lowest average household income, $21,536, when we exclude ZIP Codes that appear to have a high college student population from consideration.

The complete list of the top (and bottom) 200 ZIP Codes in the US based on median household income is readily available on www.HomeTownLocator.com.


GAZETTEER RESEARCH TOOLS

1 The annual census demographic estimates and 5-year forecasts are based upon data produced by Esri Demographics. Their estimates and forecasts use the latest US Census Bureau annual American Community Survey (ACS) as a starting point. They then combine additional data from multiple sources including residential postal delivery counts from the USPS; a time series of county-to-county migration patterns from the IRS; building permits; housing starts and local data sources that tested well against the most recent census. For more detailed information: Methodology Statement: 2017/2022 Esri US Demographic Updates.

2017 Demographic Data Updates With New Parameters

The just released demographic updates now available on the HomeTownLocator State Gazetteers are point estimates for July 1, 2017. As usual, the update also includes forecast growth rates for the next five years for every incorporated city, town, village, Census Designated Place (CDP), county and county equivalent, ZIP Code Tabulation Area, and neighborhhood (Census Block Group) in each of the 50 states.

The four new population parameters added with the 2017 update include:

  1. Daytime Population: Workers
  2. Daytime Population: Residents
  3. Total Daytime Population (TDP)
  4. Ratio of TDP/Total Population

If the ratio of the TDP to Total Population is greater than 1, the location gains population during the day when commuting workers are present. If the ratio is less than 1, the location is more of a bedroom community where people commute to another place for work.

The HomeTownLocator gazetteers have very easy to use tools to help you explore local information. As an example, the Florida Research Tools page helps you find information or do comparisons of locations within a single state.

The State Demographic Data Comparison Tool allows you to easily compare states to one another.

If you’re interested in comparing cities, towns, counties, and ZIP Codes nation wide, then you’ll find the Compare Selected City, Town, County & ZIP Code Data Tool very easy to use.


The data used in the annual updates are produced by Esri Demographics. Their estimates and forecasts use the latest US Census Bureau Annual American Community Survey (ACS) as a starting point. They then combine additional data from multiple sources including residential postal delivery counts from the USPS; a time series of county-to-county migration patterns from the IRS; building permits; housing starts and local data sources that tested well against the most recent census. For more detailed information: Methodology Statement: 2017/2022 Esri US Demographic Updates.

 

Hyperlocal Data, Demographics & Directory

An Address Based Research Tool
Input an address and get data & demographs for the local area. The data is for the appropriate Census Block Group which is the smallest geographical unit used by the Census Bureau for reporting certain types of data. You’ll also get a customized searchable map and a customized directory that are based on the geographic coordinates for the address.

An input form for the Hyperlocal Data, Demographics & Directory Tool is contained on the home page of each HomeTownLocator state gazetteer.

Data & Demographics
The data includes population, housing and income information including:

  • The percentages of owner occupied, renter occupied and vacant homes,
  • The average and median home values,
  • The average and median household incomes,
  • The number of people living in group quarters such as dormatories, group homes, correctional facilities, etc.

Customized Searchable Map
The searchable maps are centered on the geographic coordinates for the address. You can search by either a business name or a business category.

Customized Directory
The customized directory also uses a search radius that is centered on the geographic coordinates for the address.

Higher-Level Geographic, Political and Administrative Units
The higher-level geographic, political and administrative units that are applicable to both the specific address of interest as well as the Block Groups are identified and hyperlinked. This will include the Census Tract, county, county subdivision and ZIP Code for all addresses. As appropriate, it will also include the incorporated city, town, village or census designated place (CDP) that encompasses the address.

School Attendance Zones (SAZ)
Where applicable, we identify the elementary, middle and high school that has a school boundary that includes the address of interest. Currently, we have SAZs that cover over 88% of the U.S. student population.

Sophisticated Data Compilation Based on Reliable Resources
The data, demographic estimates and forecasts in the HTL website are based upon July 1, 2015 updated data produced by Esri Demographics, which use the latest US Census Bureau annual American Community Survey (ACS) as a starting point. They then combine additional data from multiple sources including residential postal delivery counts from the USPS, a time series of county-to-county migration patterns from the IRS, building permits, housing starts and local data sources that tested well against Census 2010.

New School Boundary Maps for 2015/2016

HomeTownLocator has just updated the school boundary maps in all 50 of their state gazetteers for the new 2015/2016 school year.

The new school boundary map for a particular school (also called a school attendance zone or SAZ map) can be located in seven different ways. In the schools section of each state gazetteer (such as http://florida.hometownlocator.com/schools/) you can locate schools by name, city, county, school district or ZIP Code.

You can also search for schools by simply inputting a residential street address in a search form and selecting the type of school (Primary, Middle or High) that interests you. Here’s an example:

Click the image to enlarge it.FindSchoolByAddress

You can also use a simple “Point & Click” method on a map. You’ll find a state map on the homepage of the schools section of the gazetteer. Using standard Google maps tools to zoom-in, zoom-out and pan the map-window in any direction, you can locate a place of interest. When you then “Point & Click” on the map, the web application will drop a pin in that location and immediately locate the appropriate Primary, Middle or High School for it. If the appropriate school can not be identified, then the school district is mapped and contact information for the school district is provided.

In addition to the school attendance zone map, the individual school profile page also provides contact information for the school, a link to information about the school district as well as a list of all of the schools in that district, and basic information about the number of students, teachers, number of students by grade, etc. Here is an example:

Click the image to enlarge it.VBhighSchoolProfile

What are the data sources for the school attendance zone maps and other data about individual schools and school districts?

School attendance zones are individually compiled by Maponics utilizing (1) GIS data, textual descriptions, address lists, and printed maps obtained directly from individual school districts; (2) the National Center for Education Statistics, (3) the US Census Bureau, and (4) state departments of education. Maponics has been the leading provider of commercial school data attendance zone GIS information since 2010. HTL, Inc. licenses this data for use on our 50 state gazetteers. 

 

Interactive Gazetteer Maps

The six most popular interactive gazetteer maps are:

  1. Place Maps – incorporated cities, towns and census designated places (CDPs)
  2. Maps of Physical & Cultural Features
  3. Congressional District (CD) Maps
  4. School Attendance Zone Maps
  5. ZIP Code Maps
  6. County Maps

As an example, here is a map for the Florida 8th Congressional District:

CDmaps2

On the Congressional District (CD) Maps you can interact with the map in several ways:

  • You can “Point & Click” anywhere on the map and the appropriate Congressional District will be outlined along with contact information for the Representative.
  • You can use the “Select CD Drop Down” list of Congressional Districts in the upper-right of the map.
  • You can input a street address or even just a city or town name in the “Search [StateCode] Box” in the upper-left.
  • You also have standard Google map controls on the left side of the map for zooming in or out and panning the map in any direction.

The Maps of Physical and Cultural Features (Example) have a “Search the map for:” search box underneath the map. You can search for nearly anything and the search function will be centered on the feature location.  These maps also have a link to a larger map as well as driving directions from nearly anywhere.

The School Attendance Zones Maps (Examplecan be located by searching for a school by name, city, county, ZIP Code,  School District or a street address. The search box for address searches is in the upper left of every map in the school section of the gazetteer. You can specify the school type (Primary, Middle, High or Other/Mixed) using a check box in the search form. You also have the option to “Point & Click” on any school map and the appropriate school attendance zone map will be displayed along with a link to the school profile page.

There are two types of ZIP Code Maps. One type highlights all of the ZIP Codes for a city. The example below is Vero Beach, FL ZIP Codes.

vbZIPcodes

The second type is for a single ZIP Code (32960).

Map32960

The ZIP Code Maps include an address search box in the upper-left, a drop-down list of all of the cities and towns in the state in the upper-right and the same type of “Search the map for:” function mentioned in the section about Physical & Cultural Feature Maps.

The County Maps (Example) function in a nearly identical manner as the Congressional District Maps. You can “Point & Click” on the map and the county will be identified; input an address in the search box in the upper-left; select from the drop-down list of counties in the upper-right; or use standard Google map controls on the left side of the maps to pan in any direction as well as zoom in or out.

The state gazetteers also have two other map types:

  1. A Geocoding Map that allows you to input an address and get the coordinates for that location, and
  2. A Reverse Geocoding Map where you place a marker on a map and get both the coordinates and the nearest address for that location.

 

Most & Least Diverse Places in America

The Diversity Index (DI) is a scale of 0 to 100 that represents the likelyhood that two persons, chosen at random from the same area, belong to different race or ethnic groups. If an area’s entire population belongs to one race and one ethnic group, then the area has zero diversity. An area’s diversity index increases to 100 when the population is evenly divided into two or more race/ethnic groups.

When all incorporated cities, towns and census designated places (CDPs) in the  United States are ranked by Diversity Index from highest to lowest using July 1, 2015 estimates, which ones have the highest DI and which ones have the lowest DI?

The top-five MOST diverse locations in the US include:

  1. Lost Hills Census Designated Place in California has a DI of 98.8.
  2. Kennedy Census Designated Place in California had a DI of 97.8.
  3. The City of Wapato in Washington has a DI of 97.2.
  4. Chamita Census Designated Place in New Mexico has a DI of 96.9.
  5. Alcalde Census Designated Place in New Mexico has a DI of 94.4.

Here is a list of the Top-Two-Hundred MOST diverse Places in the US.
Here is a list of the Top-Two-Hundred MOST diverse ZIP Codes in the US.
Here is a list of the Top-Two-Hundred MOST diverse Counties in the US.

The top-five LEAST diverse locations in the US include:

  1. Pathfork Census Designated Place in Kentucky has a DI of 0.5.
  2. Payne Gap Census Designated Place in Kentucky has a DI of 0.7.
  3. The Borough of Central City in Pennsylvania has a DI of 0.7.
  4. The City of Eitzen in Minnesota has a DI of 0.8.
  5. The Village of Livingston in Wisconsin has a DI of 0.8.

Here is a list of the Top-Two-Hundred LEAST diverse places in the US.
Here is a list of the Top-Two-Hundred LEAST diverse ZIP Codes in the US.
Here is a list of the Top-Two-Hundred LEAST diverse Counties in the US.

 

 

Measuring Diversity in America: Diversity Index

The Esri Diversity Index expresses the racial and ethnic diversity of a geographic area in a single number that ranges from 0 to 100. The Diversity Index represents the likelihood that two persons, selected at random from a specific geographic area, belong to different race or ethnic groups. If an area’s entire population belongs to one race or ethnic group, then the area has zero diversity. If an area’s population is evenly divided into two or more race/ethnic groups, then the Diversity Index is 100.

The United States had a Diversity Index of 60.6 based on 2010 census counts. As of July 1, 2015, the Diversity Index was estimated to be 63.0 and it is forecast to be 65.3 by July 1, 2020.

When the Unites States are sorted into ranked order by Diversity Index, the top-five states with the highest Diversity Index (DI) (as of July 1, 2015) are:

  • Hawaii, DI = 83.2
  • California, DI = 82.4
  • New Mexico, DI = 77.1
  • Nevada, DI = 75.3
  • Texas, DI = 74.4

From this same ranked order listing of states by DI, the states with the lowest Diversity Index are:

  • Maine, DI = 13.2
  • Vermont, DI = 13.8
  • West Virginia, DI = 15.7
  • New Hampshire, DI = 19.7
  • Montana, DI = 27.1

Note that the Diversity Index is reported for 99,861 locations including cities, towns, villages, counties, boroughs, ZIP Codes and census designated places (CDPs) in the HomeTownLocator series of 50 state gazetteers.

 

Virginia’s Richest and Poorest Places

On July 1, 2015, we updated the demographic data in the Virginia HomeTownLocator Gazetteer with new estimates for 591 Virginia places including 229 incorporated places (39 cities and 190 towns) and 362 census designated places (CDPs). See Gazetteer References & Data Sources for methodology.

There is population, housing and income data for the current year and forecasted growth rates for the next five years. Using a simple online data comparison tool, we’ve identified Virginia’s richest and poorest places using the July 1, 2015 estimates of Average Household Income.

The Great Falls Census Designated Place (CDP) in Fairfax County has the highest Average Household Income in Virginia with an average estimated to be $305,242. Great Falls CDP has a total population of 15,883 and 5,140 households. Average household size is 3.09 people. The vast majority of housing is Owner Occupied (89.5%) with just 3.9% of the housing units identified as vacant. Average Home Value in the Great Falls CDP is $1,126,181.

Thynedale Census Designated Place (CDP) in Mecklenburg County has the lowest Average Household Income in Virginia with the average estimated to be $47,842. Thynedale CDP has a population of 188 with 74 households. Average household size is 2.47. Owners occupy 58.8% of the housing units; renters occupy 28.2% while 12.9% of the housing units are vacant. Average Home Value in Thynedale CDP is $83,333.

See links below for more data about Virginia places and ZIP Codes:

  1. Top-Twenty Richest Virginia Places
  2. Twenty of the Poorest Virginia Places
  3. Top-Twenty Richest Virginia ZIP Codes
  4. Twenty of the Poorest Virginia ZIP Codes

Georgia’s Richest and Poorest Places

On July 1, 2015, we updated the demographic data in the Georgia HomeTownLocator Gazetteer with new estimates for 624 Georgia places including 535 incorporated places (425 cities and 105 towns) and 89 census designated places (CDPs). See Gazetteer References & Data Sources for methodology.

There is population, housing and income data for the current year and forecasted growth rates for the next five years. Using a simple online data comparison tool, we’ve identified Georgia’s richest and poorest places using the July 1, 2015 estimates of Average Household Income.

The City of Mountain Park in Fulton County has the highest Average Household Income in Georgia with an average estimated to be $177,305. Mountain Park has a total population of 564 and 206 households. Average household size is 2.17 people. The vast majority of housing is Owner Occupied (79.9%) with 11.6% of the housing units identified as vacant. Average Home Value in the Mountain Park is $621,795.

The City of Remerton in Lowndes County has the lowest Average Household Income in Georgia with the average estimated to be $27,308. Remerton has a population of 1,298 with 622 households. Average household size is 2.09. Owners occupy is just 4.4% of the housing units while renters occupy 84.2% and 11.4% of the housing units are vacant. Average Home Value in Remerton is $229.839.

See links below for more data about Georgia places and ZIP Codes:

  1. Top-Twenty Richest Georgia Places
  2. Twenty of the Poorest Georgia Places
  3. Top-Twenty Richest Georgia ZIP Codes
  4. Twenty of the Poorest Georgia ZIP Codes