Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the richest cities in America.
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According to a recent study, if you earn about $95,000 a year, you’re optimally happy. Any more than that, and you’re not. Surprised by that? We were. I think just about everyone who’s reading this would think, “Give me a million bucks, I’ll be happy as heck!”
Happiness isn’t the metric we’re measuring, today, however. It’s pretty easy to see where the richest people live. You just have to measure how much money people make, and who has the best jobs in every city. Or, you could just see where people like this live and try and get on their good side.
Where do you go if you want to see the richest people in the nation? We’re not talking about individuals. We mean, specifically, which parts of the country.
The general assumption is going to be suburbs of major cities where people live in big homes, away from the grimy, packed downtown areas. Yes, we took that into account, but you also have to assume the richest cities in America are going to be where people have amazing jobs.
The cities we’re about to mention are pretty wealthy, overall.
Is everyone in these places loaded? No. But are most of their bank accounts pretty fat? Yeah they are.
So, what’s the richest big city in America according to the data? Per the most recent ACS data, the richest city in America is Centennial, CO.You can check out how CO ranked overall in our richest states in America.
To see exactly how we calculated these rankings, read on.
Or if you’re simply not interested in reading about the high and mighty, and you don’t care about this list, check out:
The 10 Richest Cities In America For 2020
Source: Wikipedia User Jeffrey Beall | CC BY 3.0
Rank Last Year: 3 (Up 2)
Median Income: $105,974 ( best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.4% ( best)
More on Centennial:Real Estate | Data | Photos
We’re climbing higher and higher up the money tree, as we visit the very wealthy city of Centennial, Colorado. Folks here have great jobs, work hard, and hardly anyone in town struggles to make ends meet.
This is where a lot of the rich and fancy residents live with their families. People here earn on average, the 10th highest incomes overall, and only 3.42% of people who live here don’t have a job. For a state this large, that’s crazy low.
In fact, People in other parts of the nearby areas generally stereotype this part of the state as being wealthy and stuck up. Well, that’s probably because the students have better cars than their teachers.
There’s a lot of old money here, too. Rich people can spend all their money and then they’re broke. But wealthy people – like old money people will never spend all their money. They can’t even do it if they tried. People come here to find jobs and for a more peaceful and better quality of life.
Crazy Rich Asians would maybe even consider buying a home here.
Source: Flickr User nan palmero | CC BY 2.0
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Income: $127,133 ( best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.7% ( best)
More on Frisco:Real Estate | Data | Photos
Where’s our 2nd richest city in the entire nation? That would be Frisco, Texas — a little nook just outside of Dallas.
It’s sorta like Dynasty. Many people here are loa-ded. Just about all households who live here earn well over $100,000 a year annually. Some parts of this area are just off the charts out of touch with reality. Households here vary between two-income homes when both parents have great jobs, or households where there’s one primary earner in the top tier of their industry. Doctors, lawyers, business owners and entrepreneurs.
Most of the well to do here frequent Whole Foods, Starbucks, Core Power or LuLuLemon.
Do you think they know they’re the richest people in the state? I think that’s a safe bet.
Is it snobby here? Maybe from an outsiders standpoint, but it might be more of a shallow suburban type of vibe. Does being rich make you out of touch with reality? Perhaps.
But money does indeed buy happiness. Just ask someone without it.
Source: Wikipedia User Grguy2011 | CC BY-SA 3.0
Rank Last Year: 1 (Down 2)
Median Income: $102,891 ( best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.4% ( best)
More on Pearland:Real Estate | Data | Photos
Who are the 3rd richest people in the entire country? That would be the people in Pearland, Texas. And you can bet that many of the residents here are aware of the fact that they’re only the second richest people in the state, too.
Here, the average income per household is much more than you and I would earn every year. It’s the kind of place where you see soccer moms running errands in the middle of the day, where landscaping crews do their duty, and where the everyone’s biggest concern is who is going to try and take their money away from them.
There is no struggling here. It’s a different type of place from the rest of the state. Everything is just…peaceful. If Scrooge McDuck was real, he’d probably have a home here, don’t you think? This rich little enclave is just outside of Houston. Folks here rank 15th for income levels, and 3rd-lowest for number of people living in poverty (3.77%).
Source: Wikipedia User Alexisrael | CC BY-SA 3.0
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
Median Income: $101,079 ( best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.5% ( best)
More on Cary:Real Estate | Data | Photos
Here in Cary, North Carolina, things couldn’t be more rich. Cary is just a perfect little slice of heaven outside of Raleigh. At least that’s what the locals would tell you.
Only 3.49% of residents here are without work, and if you drive around town long enough, it’ll be clear; anyone who wants a job here can get a job. If you’re out of work in Cary, it’s your own damn fault.
It may not be a very large place, but people’s bank accounts are pretty large. Families earn the 3rd highest incomes in the whole state. It’s a great place to raise kids. It’s safe. You won’t see too many police officers around, but when they police are called, they show up in minutes.
Source: Wikipedia User David Ball | GFDL
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
Median Income: $127,374 ( best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.1% ( best)
More on Fremont:Real Estate | Data | Photos
Our next stop, Fremont, California, probably won’t come as a surprise to anyone who lives in the state. When you think of wealthy areas in California, some people may think Beverly Hills or Sunnyvale. But in fact, it’s the jam-packed east bay city of Fremont that’s the wealthiest in all of the Golden State. Households here make earn the 2nd highest incomes. The residents here aren’t necessarily famous, but they’re definitely rich.
While you may see people in this city driving around in fancy cars, odds are people you meet there are really comfortable. In fact, people here are more likely to downplay their money than show it off. One reason people are ‘rich’ in Fremont is the fact that salaries are so inflated because the cost of living is so high. So, you’re not as ‘rich’ in Fremont as you would be in, say, Cary, NC.
And while it might be easy to scoff at the success of folks here, you have to remember, just about everyone here worked their butts off to get to where they are.
Source: Wikipedia User Ichabod | CC BY-SA 3.0
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 3)
Median Income: $85,318 ( best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.1% ( best)
More on Olathe:Real Estate | Data | Photos
The HomeSnacks money train takes its next stop in Olathe, Kansas. Okay, thanks Mr. Obvious. Just about everyone in Kansas knows these people are loaded. This place has a ton of money. Overall, the average households bring in pretty big salaries every year. This might sound like a decent chunk of change, but when you think about how much it costs to live here, suddenly it might not seem like a lot.
You won’t see condos here. There are very little liquor stores or smoke shops. Crime is something that happens in other cities, not here. While it’s idyllic in many places, it can be quite…boring.
How does 20% of Kansas rank as the wealthiest cities in the nation? Well, maybe there’s a lot less about the midwest than you thought you knew, kiddo. Frankly speaking, Kansas is one of the best places you can live. It’s safe, friendly, and there are great schools. It’s just plain boring is all. But hey — you could spend your days counting your money, right?
Source: Wikipedia User Nightryder84 | CC BY-SA 3.0
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 3)
Median Income: $82,651 ( best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.4% ( best)
More on Overland Park:Real Estate | Data | Photos
We continue our money train tour of the state as we stop in the city of Overland Park, Kansas. What? How in the heck did they get so much money here?
They have to be doing something right in here. Families earn the 7th highest incomes in the state. In addition, this city has a low unemployment rate, and one of the state’s lowest poverty rates. Only 1 in 11 people here lives in poverty. While that might seem high, for an entire city, it’s really low.
Do people work hard in this city? After all, it has a stereotype as being a very snobby city. But snobs can work hard, can’t they? In fact, most have bigger bank account than you will ever have.
Ca Ching, Ca Ching, Ca Ching. Great jobs, low unemployment and a really low cost of living makes this Prairie State city one of the best places you could live if you wanted to earn a great living.
Source: Public domain
Rank Last Year: 7 (Down 1)
Median Income: $115,167 ( best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.8% ( best)
More on San Mateo:Real Estate | Data | Photos
Welcome to San Mateo for its first appearance on this list jumping up six spots and knocking off Napervolle.
This rich suburb has appeared on a number of our lists this year thanks to being rich, safe, and a generally awesome place to live.
We actually had an office here for our previous company and could see how it could be considered rich.There’s a ton of great, expensive Asian food downtown and a pretty solid shopping center. We’d highly recommend getting some teriyaki steak and eggs at Nini’s Coffee Shop if you can afford it.
Source: Wikipedia User Jelson25 | CC BY-SA 3.0
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 2)
Median Income: $112,283 ( best)
Unemployment Rate: 4.0% ( best)
More on Bellevue:Real Estate | Data | Photos
Welcome to Bellevue, Washington, our 9th most richest city in America. Some of these neighborhoods are where you go to for sell Girl Scout cookies or candy bars or where all the poor kids go trick-or-treating on Halloween.
Their workforce is also among the best-educated in the state, too. Better-educated workers tend to make more money. This city has it all – Grand houses. Great schools. Excellent tennis instructors. The very best groundskeepers and gated-subdivision on-call security guards around.
If you’re a kid here, your allowance is probably more than your teacher’s salary.
Source: Wikipedia User Coolcaesar at E | GFDL
Rank Last Year: 8 (Down 2)
Median Income: $116,257 ( best)
Unemployment Rate: 3.8% ( best)
More on Santa Clara:Real Estate | Data | Photos
Santa Clara provides another California city to the richest in America while knocking out Bellevue from last.
Residents here earn the 6th-highest incomes in the entire nation. The fact that its close to San Jose and San Francisco with its booming tech scene really helps drive up the local salary numbers.
What do rich people in Santa Clara do? Well it looks like you could spend a day at the Intel Museum getting your geek on or try out California‘s Greate America to get your thrill on. We’d imagine you could also just roll around in your cash if you wanted to.
I love Frisco, specifically Frisco Square, with its cozy vibe. It’s a small area, but it has great restaurants, a library, movie theater, and senior center to keep it alive. In the winter, the whole place is alive with lights that create a very picturesque scene.
The people and restaurants stand out. The people are nice wherever you go, and there is a diversity of delicious restaurants, whether you’re looking for casual or formal dining.
Review Where You Live
Teacher’s in cary are very kind and helpful, and can give you the best education you can get. So far as a child I’ve lived in cary all my life and I want it to stay like that, you can also get very kind, respectful and caring Neighbors.
My favorite places are either restraints because I love.. food or trampoline parks because they are very fun and enjoyable for about anyone. There isn’t really anything to watch out for because Cary, NC is the most safest city in America.
Review Where You Live
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