Bridgeport, Hurricane, Nitro: These cities aren’t just some of the best places to live in West Virginia. They are also home to some of the richest people in the Mountain State.
Bridgeport in particular houses the richest residents in the state thanks, in part, to a median household income of $80,462 and a ridiculously low poverty rate of 4.2%.
If you’re thinking of moving to one of these towns, you’ll probably need to start saving. The richest places in West Virginia share common characteristics such as having a genius level populous, sky high home prices, and a Pleasantville level of married couples.
How did we come up with these mega wealthy cities? We analyzed Census data from the 2012-2016 American Community Survey for the 27 places in West Virginia with more than 5,000 people.
At the end of the day, here’s the set of the 10 richest places in West Virginia for 2018:
- Bridgeport (Photos | Homes)
- Hurricane (Photos | Homes)
- Nitro (Homes)
- Vienna (Photos | Homes)
- South Charleston (Photos | Homes)
- Dunbar (Homes)
- Weirton (Photos | Homes)
- St. Albans (Photos | Homes)
- Charles Town (Photos | Homes)
- Charleston (Photos | Homes)
For more on how we calculated the top ten, read on or skip to the end for the full list of the richest cities in West Virginia.
How We Determined The Richest Places In West Virginia For 2018
The first thing that comes to most people’s minds when they think about determining the richest places is to simply identify personal incomes. After all, rich people have really high salaries.
However, we don’t believe that one statistic wholly encompasses what it means to be one of the ‘richest places’. So we looked at this set of criteria from the newly released 2012-2016 American Community Survey:
- Poverty Level
- Median Household Income
- Unemployment Rate
Median household income is the most digestible way to understand how rich a place really is. The unemployment rate tries to capture the prospects for more people to become rich. If more people are employed, the richer the future looks.
After we collected the data for all 27 places with more than 5,000 people in West Virginia, we ranked each place from 1 to 27 for each of the criteria, with 1 being the richest.
We then averaged all the rankings for a place into a ‘Rich Score’ with the place having the lowest overall Rich Score, Bridgeport, crowned the ‘Richest Place In West Virginia For 2018’.
You can learn more about the top ten below or skip to the end to see the rankings for all 27 places.
Population: 8,364Median Income: $80,462
Unemployment Rate: 4.1%
Poverty Rate: 4.2%
More on Bridgeport: Real Estate | Data
Bridgeport is a city in Harrison County, West Virginia, USA. The population was 8,149 at the 2010 census.
Population: 6,460Median Income: $50,469
Unemployment Rate: 3.2%
Poverty Rate: 10.1%
More on Hurricane: Real Estate | Data
Hurricane /hrkn/ is a city in Putnam County, West Virginia, in the United States. The population was 6,284 at the 2010 census.
5. South Charleston
Population: 7,714 Median Income: $42,236
Unemployment Rate: 5.1%
Poverty Rate: 15.1%
More on Dunbar: Real Estate | Data
Dunbar is a city in Kanawha County, West Virginia, along the Kanawha River. The population was 7,907 at the 2010 census.
Population: 19,307Median Income: $39,328
Unemployment Rate: 4.4%
Poverty Rate: 16.6%
More on Weirton: Real Estate | Data
Weirton (pron. WEER-ton) is a city in Brooke and Hancock counties in the U.S. state of West Virginia. Located primarily in Hancock County, the city lies in the northern portions of the state’s Northern Panhandle region. As of the 2010 census, the city’s population was 19,746. It is a principal city within the Weirton-Steubenville Metropolitan Area, which had a population of 124,454 residents, and by extension part of the Pittsburgh Metropolitan Area.
8. St. Albans
Population: 10,788Median Income: $46,534
Unemployment Rate: 6.2%
Poverty Rate: 16.0%
More on St. Albans: Real Estate | Data
St. Albans is a city in Kanawha County, West Virginia, United States, at the confluence of the Kanawha and Coal Rivers. The population was 11,044 at the 2010 census.
9. Charles Town
Population: 5,682Median Income: $73,229
Unemployment Rate: 10.1%
Poverty Rate: 10.4%
More on Charles Town: Real Estate | Data
Charles Town, officially the City of Charles Town, is a city in Jefferson County, West Virginia, and is also the county seat. The population was 5,259 at the 2010 United States Census.
Population: 50,210Median Income: $46,720
Unemployment Rate: 6.9%
Poverty Rate: 20.0%
More on Charleston: Real Estate | Data
Charleston is the state capital and the most populous city in the U.S. state of West Virginia, and the county seat of Kanawha County. It is located at the confluence of the Elk and Kanawha Rivers. As of the 2013 Census Estimate, it had a population of 50,821, while its metropolitan area had 224,743. It is a center of government, commerce, and industry.
There You Have It – The Wealthiest Places In West Virginia For 2018
Like we said earlier, when we set out to identify the richest places in West Virginia, we weren’t sure what we’d encounter, but it ended up being some of the best places to live in West Virginia.
When you look at the data, the cities and places mentioned above meet the criteria for being at the very top of the income ladder for everyone that lives there.
If you’re curious enough, here are the poorest cities in West Virginia, according to data:
2nd Poorest: Huntington
3rd Poorest: Martinsburg
For more West Virginia reading , check out:
Detailed List Of The Richest Cities In West Virginia