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Cities Adding the Most High-Income Households – 2024 Study


High-income households may have an outsized impact on local economies, which can put increased pressure on housing markets, shift demand for services and businesses, and tax base contributions. The IRS defines high income as taxpayers making $200,000 or more. Examining the rate of growth of this cohort allows us to identify potential up-and-coming alternatives to established areas of wealth.

With this in mind, SmartAsset ranked 345 of the largest U.S. cities to determine where the proportion of high-income households grew the most over one year according to the latest U.S. Census Bureau data.

Key Findings

  • Only one Southern city made the top 10. Jackson, MS saw 125% growth in its high-income population. While this city of nearly 150,000 people has a below-average rate of high-income households at 4.5%, that’s up from just 2% only a year prior.
  • Four Midwestern cities made the top 25. Situated on the Indiana and Kentucky border, Evansville, IN placed third with 150% growth in high-income households. Dayton and Cleveland, OH placed 11th and 17th respectively, with the percentage of high-income households growing by 115% and 82% respectively. Rockford, IL placed 18th with 81% growth.
  • Three northeast cities saw high-income households grow by 125% or more. Springfield, MA placed sixth overall, with high-income households representing 5.8% of households in 2022, up from 2.4% in 2021. New Haven, CT grew to 10.4% high-income from 4.4%, earning it a seventh place ranking. Manchester, NH ranked eighth, jumping from 4.1% to 9.6% of households and making more than $200,000.
  • Bay Area cities have the highest rates of households making $200k+. More than one-third of households in these cities are considered high-income, claiming five out of the top six spots in the study: Sunnyvale (43.7%), Santa Clara (41.9%), Fremont (39.4%), San Mateo (36.9%) and San Francisco (34.9%). Bellevue, WA (37.4%) ranks fourth, between San Mateo and San Francisco, for most high-income households.
  • New York City saw 20% growth in the rate of high-income households. Between 2021 and 2022, the percentage of New York City households making $200,000 or more jumped from 12.8% to 15.3%. This netted an additional 109,144 high-income households in the city.

Top 10 Cities Where High-Income Households Increased Most

  1. Spokane Valley, Washington
    Spokane Valley saw an 183.3% growth in high-income households, with the share rising to 5.1% in 2022 from 1.8% in 2021, adding 1,510 households.
  1. Allentown, Pennsylvania
    Allentown’s high-income households grew by 163.6%, making up 2.9% of its households in 2022, which is up from 1.1% a year before. This was a net increase of 830 households.
  1. Evansville, Indiana
    Evansville had a 150.0% increase in high-income households, with the percentage growing from 1% to 2.5%. This included 816 households added.
  1. Killeen, Texas 
    Killeen increased 146.2% in high-income households. Just about 1,200 high-income households were added, bringing the rate from 1.3% to 3.2%.
  1. San Tan Valley, Arizona
    San Tan Valley’s high-income households went up by 143.9%, which made up 10% of all households in 2022. This was an increase of 4.1% with an addition of 2,344 households.
  1. Springfield, Massachusetts
    Springfield saw a 141.7% increase in high-income households, which made up 5.8% of all households. This was an increase from 2.4%, with 2,103 households added.
  1. New Haven, Connecticut
    In New Haven, high-income households grew by 136.4%. They represented 10.4% of all households, which is up from 4.4%. The city added 3,362 households making at least $200,000.
  1. Manchester, New Hampshire
    Manchester had a 134.1% growth in high-income households, which made up 9.6% of all households in 2022 after adding 2,620. In 2021, the rate of high-income households was just 4.1%. 
  1. Jackson, Mississippi
    Jackson’s high-income households increased by 125.0%. They accounted for 4.5% of all households in 2022, which is up by 2% after adding 1,554.
  1. Palmdale, California
    Palmdale had an increase of 119.4% in high-income households. In 2022, 13.6% of households made $200,000 or more, which is up from 6.2% the year before. This change included an addition of 3,306 households.

Data and Methodology

All data comes from the U.S. Census Bureau 1-Year Community Survey for 2022 and 2021. The study includes 345 cities with a population of 100,000 or more for which data was available. Cities were ranked based on the growth in high-income households as a percentage of total households between 2021 and 2022. High-income households are defined as those making an income of $200,000 or more.

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Photo credit: © Fisher