What’s A “Middle-Class Income” Where You Live?

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Adé Hennis
June 12, 2024

Between the 1950s and the 1970s, someone earning an annual income of  $100,000 was seen as living high on the hog. In some states, that is now at the high end of a middle-class income range  A recent report shows how that range in each state has moved upward since 2012.

From 2012 to 2022, the average household income required to be considered middle class in the U.S. increased by 41.67%. Oregon saw the largest increase, at 53.15 percent, while Alaska had the smallest, at 23.53%.

In Maryland, New Jersey, and Massachusetts, the highest 2022 salary considered middle class is around $190,000. “Our financial well-being is not an objective number,” says Brad Klontz, a certified financial planner. It’s subjective and based on who we compare ourselves to.”  But there are other factors, too.

Factors such as how much money Americans are actually pocketing play a role. A 2024 survey shows that two-thirds of the people earning $50,000-$100,000 annually are living paycheck to paycheck.

Income data were gathered from the U.S. Census American Community Survey. The data are current as of April 2024.