We’re diving deep into the realm of economics and personal finance today with yet another calculator for you. This is our Household Income Percentile Calculator. Whether you’re looking for an overview of the economic landscape or just curious about your standing, this insightful tool offers invaluable insights. So, let’s unpack it and explore how it can help you navigate your financial journey!
If you’re looking for a calculator for benchmarking individual income, please try out our income percentile calculator for individuals.
Household Income Percentile Calculator
To get going, just enter your household income and hit Calculate. For additional color you can enter data in the other fields. The terminology used for the inputs in this calculator might be a bit confusing, so please do refer to the Usage Guide below for additional help.
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This calculator uses data from the US Census Bureau and hence the terminology used here reflects the terms that they use. Here is some additional information about the various inputs:
- Annual Income: This is the only mandatory input. Please include all the earners in your home and not just your individual income.
- Householder Age: This is the age of the householder.
- People (#): This is the number of people staying in a household.
- Family: This is a dropdown menu which lets you declare whether the group of people in a household are family or not. If you select “All”, the results are shown for all types of households – family and non-family.
- Own Children: This field is used to declare whether there are any unmarried children below the age of 18 who is/are a son or daughter by birth, a stepchild, or an adopted child of the householder. Note this relation is to the householder specifically, and not to other members in the household.
- Race: Select the race of the householder.
If you find this amount of information overwhelming, please start first just the Annual Income field. Then add the details of each parameter, one-by-one and you can see how the result evolves.
This calculator takes your information and slices and dices it to compare to a large amount of data generated by the Census Bureau, so it might take a few minutes to digest it all. Just as reference point, the dataset has information on nearly 128 million households!
The calculator presents the results in several different formats. First, the calculator shows how your household income compares against the rest of the households in the US. The result is shown in percentile format. If you select a Race, it will also show your household income percentile by race.
A chart with the income distribution for the households is shown. Use the drop-down menu here to see the chart for the various combinations of inputs that you entered.
The table then shows the percentile and median income for each specific combination of input entered. This includes household income percentile by age, household income percentile by age, household income percentile by race, household income percentile by family or non-family status, and finally median household income by whether there are related children in the household.
For certain combinations, data for percentile or medians may not be available, so those are omitted in the table.
What’s the median household income in the US?
The median household income in the USA, according to the latest government census, is $69,717. This is likely to change year on year, but it’s a fairly safe benchmark to work with.
The median income for a household classified as a family is $85,806. Once you factor in data points such as a household consisting of 4 people and that has own children, the median income climbs to as high as $105,433.
There are numerous factors that drive these figures and so I recommend playing around with the inputs of the calculator to see the different results.
Once other factors such as single-income households are considered along with all the other variations, the median family household drops to $91,160.
However, again, you’ll need to consider the median income for your state or region. The median household income in New York state is $74,314. The median household income in Mississippi is much lower at $48,716. That’s a big difference! So, it’s healthy to look at income statistics on a national and state level as well.
Understanding Income Percentiles: Household Vs. Individual
Income percentiles can seem confusing at first, but with a clear understanding of the terms, it becomes a valuable tool in assessing economic health. Among these terms, two stand out: ‘household income percentile’ and ‘individual income percentile’. Let’s explore these concepts and their differences to better comprehend their implications.
Individual Income Percentile
This term refers to where an individual’s income stands in comparison to others. The percentile is calculated based on the income of all individuals, regardless of their household status. For instance, if you fall into the 70th individual income percentile, your income is higher than 70% of all individuals. This measure provides insight into an individual’s economic standing on a personal level. See more here.
Household Income Percentile
On the other hand, household income percentile takes into account the total income of all people living in a single housing unit, whether they are family or not. This includes income from wages, investments, and any other sources. For instance, if your household falls in the 80th percentile, this means your household income is higher than 80% of all households in the US.
The main difference between these two lies in the unit of measurement. Individual income percentile relates to one’s personal income, while household income percentile aggregates the income of all members in a household. Thus, a high household income percentile does not necessarily equate to a high individual income percentile. It might simply be that multiple income earners live in the same household.
Even the total number of data points will illustrate the difference. When looking at the dataset for individual incomes, our datasets have the aggregate statistics of 168 million to 173 million individuals.
In comparison, the household dataset has information on around 128 million households.
Definitions can get very confusing quickly and I’ve noticed that often the meaning of many of these terms is not clear. Let’s go through some of the key terms to ensure that there is no confusion.
As mentioned above, we use the US Census Bureau for our data in this calculator, so we stick to both the phrasing and the meaning used by them to ensure consistency.
What is a Household?
A ‘household’, as defined by the Bureau, comprises all individuals living in a singular housing unit. A housing unit could be a house, apartment, mobile home, a collection of rooms, or a single room that is either occupied or, if vacant, is designed for occupancy as separate living quarters. Such separate living quarters are defined by their occupants living independently from others in the building, with direct external access or access through a shared hallway.
A household can consist of a single family, an individual living alone, multiple families cohabitating, or any combination of related or unrelated individuals who live together.
Those not residing in such households are categorized as inhabitants of group quarters – like dorms, for example.
Who is the Householder?
According to the Census Bureau, one person in each household is designated as the householder. Typically, this person is the owner, purchaser, or renter of the property, and is often the one listed first on the survey questionnaire. In instances where no one fits this description, any adult member of the household who is 15 years or older may be identified as the householder.
What is a Family?
The definition is exactly what you would expect it to be: whether the group of people in a household are a single family, or a group of people (say roommates or friends) living together.
More formally, as per the census bureau, a family consists of a householder and one or more other people living in the same household who are related to the householder by birth, marriage, or adoption. All people in a household who are related to the householder are regarded as members of his or her family. A family household may contain people not related to the householder, but those people are not included as part of the householder’s family in tabulations.
Before You Go…
I hope you enjoyed using this household income percentile calculator, please do try out our household income percentile calculator by state. That calculator lets you dive into specific data for your state, so you can get an even deeper data dive.
If you do spot any errors, please feel free to leave a comment below or send us an email.
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