DENVER (KDVR) — In 2023, a household can rake in a quarter of a million dollars a year and still be middle class, depending on the city.
Payscales for in-demand professions in business, management, health and STEM-related positions have boosted a middle-class income threshold in some cities.
Denver has the nation’s 20th-highest threshold for a “middle class” income, according to an analysis of American Community Survey income data from financial adviser SmartAsset. The analysts used the Pew Research definition of “middle class,” which is two-thirds to two times the median income in a given area.
By that definition, a middle-class income in Denver is anywhere from $54,700 to $163,000. Anything beyond $163,000 would be considered upper class. Nationally, the median income was just under $71,000 a year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.
Use SmartAsset’s chart below to see if your income is in the middle-class range in your city.
In some cities, households can earn a quarter of a million dollars a year and still be considered middle class including in San Jose, San Francisco and Irvine, California; Arlington, Virginia; Gilbert, Arizona; and Seattle, Washington.
Fremont, California has the highest threshold. In Fremont, a household isn't middle class until it makes $104,499 a year, and stays middle class until it makes $312,000.
On the other hand, some Rust Belt cities still have low thresholds for middle-class incomes. In Cleveland, Detroit and Buffalo, middle-class incomes cap at $71,000 to $81,000 - much closer to the national median household income.