When looking at which states are the richest ones in the United States, there are a few different factors that we can look at and consider. While of course all states have people who are very wealthy as well as people living below the poverty level, there are some states where the median income is higher than others. In order to determine which states are the richest, researchers have done studies that look at a few different factors including the median household income, the unemployment rate, and how many people in the state live below the poverty level.
We’ve collected a list of the top 10 richest states in the United States, and some of them might actually be surprising.
Washington comes in at the bottom of the list as it has a median household income of $70,979. Another interesting fact about this state as that it has a median home value of $339,000 dollars which is actually the fifth highest in the entire county. Even though the state is overall well off, it has a fairly high unemployment rate of 4.8% which is over the national average of 4.4%.
When you consider the beautiful views and landscape in Washington and the allure of cities like Seattle, it’s not surprising that it’s not a cheap place to live.
Many of the states that are the richest are ones that are smaller and on the East Coast. The median household income of Virginia is $71,535 and the unemployment rate is lower than the national average at 3.8%. One other fact to note is that adults who live in the state are some of the most likely across the country to have a bachelor’s degree.
This could contribute to why the median household income is higher than average. There is also a large presence of government jobs here and many people commute to D.C. for higher-paying jobs.
California is probably a state you wouldn’t be surprised to see on this list. California is a huge state with a wide range of cities and towns. While it’s home to some of the richest places in the country such as San Francisco, Beverly Hills, and Malibu, it also has a high unemployment rate of 4.8% and a large percentage of people living under the poverty level at 13.3%.
However, the amount of people with extremely high paying jobs brings up the median household income to $71,805.
Alaska might not be a place you would think is on this list. While there are certain cities in the U.S. where it’s known that a lot of wealthy people live, Alaska is often seen in the lower 48 as a rural place that’s all about the outdoors. However, the median household income is $73,181. However, the unemployment rate here is quite high at 7.2%.
Oil dividends and tourism likely help bring the median income up, even though there are clearly economic issues for many people living in this state.
6 NEW HAMPSHIRE
There are quite a few small states in New England that do well financially. New Hampshire is the first on the list with a median income per household of $73,381. They also have one of the lowest unemployment rates at only 2.7%.
This means that most of the people living in this state have a good amount of economic security. While not a large state, things such as healthcare and tourism industries in the state contribute to such stable jobs.
Connecticut is another state in the New England area that is one of the wealthiest in the country. In fact, the median household income in the state is $74,168. Also, Connecticut has one of the lowest poverty levels in the county with only 9.6% of people in the state living below the poverty line.
It’s also interesting to note that this state has the second-highest percentage of households in the country who have over a million dollars. Unfortunately, the unemployment rate here is over the national average at 4.7%.
As the list enters into the top five of the richest states in the country, Massachusetts takes the number four spot. This state is yet another that is in New England, and it has a median household income of $77,385. Their unemployment rate is also lower than average at 3.7%. Massachusetts has the highest percentage of adults in the country with bachelor's degrees.
This is definitely not surprising considering Massachusetts is home to some extremely prestigious universities including MIT and Harvard.
Hawaii is the other of the two states outside of the mainland 48 who are in the top ten list of richest states. Hawaii has a median household income of $77,765 and an unemployment rate that is extremely low at 2.4%. While the state can be expensive, the tourist economy contributes to there being a lot of jobs around.
Plus, federal defense is a large industry that provides thousands of jobs. But, because of all this, the median home value is the highest of all the states at $617,400.
2 NEW JERSEY
New Jersey is the first state on the list with a median household income that breaks over 80 grand. The median household income is $80,088. While people might think of New York City when they think of expensive cities with rich inhabitants, it’s actually people in New Jersey with high incomes overall.
In New Jersey, 13% of households make over $200,000. This means people in this state are more likely to be considered wealthy than anywhere else in the United States.
The number one richest country in the United States goes to Maryland. The median household income is $80,776. The reason for this is likely the close proximity to Washington D.C. This means that a large percentage of those in the workforce commute to D.C. for federal government jobs.
While Maryland might seem like an unassuming state that you wouldn’t expect to top the list, as far as median income is concerned, it is the wealthiest.