Western Springs, Winnetka, Glencoe: These cities aren’t just some of the best places to live in Illinois. They are also home to some of the richest people in the Prairie State.
Western Springs in particular houses the richest residents in the state thanks, in part, to a median household income of $147,361 and a ridiculously low poverty rate of 2.1%.
If you’re thinking of moving to one of these towns, you’ll probably need to start saving. The richest places in Illinois 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 334 places in Illinois with more than 5,000 people.
At the end of the day, here’s the set of the 10 richest places in Illinois for 2018:
- Western Springs (Photos)
- Winnetka (Photos)
- Glencoe (Photos)
- Lake Bluff (Photos)
- Hawthorn Woods
- Inverness (Photos)
- Deerfield (Photos)
- Northbrook (Photos)
- Oak Brook (Photos)
- Wilmette (Photos)
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 Illinois.
How We Determined The Richest Places In Illinois 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 334 places with more than 5,000 people in Illinois, we ranked each place from 1 to 334 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, Western Springs, crowned the ‘Richest Place In Illinois For 2018’.
You can learn more about the top ten below or skip to the end to see the rankings for all 334 places.
1. Western Springs
Population: 13,133Median Income: $147,361
Unemployment Rate: 2.7%
Poverty Rate: 2.1%
Western Springs is a village located in Cook County, Illinois, United States and is a suburb of Chicago. As of the 2010 census, the village had a total population of 12,975. It is twinned with Rugeley, United Kingdom.
Population: 12,437Median Income: $207,857
Unemployment Rate: 2.9%
Poverty Rate: 2.8%
Winnetka (/wntk/) is a village in Cook County, Illinois, United States, located 16 miles north of downtown Chicago. The population was 12,187 at the 2010 census. The village is one of the wealthiest places in the nation in terms of household income, and the richest in Illinois.
Population: 8,870Median Income: $185,320
Unemployment Rate: 1.5%
Poverty Rate: 3.5%
Glencoe (/lnko/) is a village in northeastern Cook County, Illinois, United States. As of the 2010 census, the total population was 8,723. Glencoe is located on Chicago’s North Shore and is located within the New Trier High School District.
4. Lake Bluff
Population: 5,758Median Income: $150,962
Unemployment Rate: 3.8%
Poverty Rate: 2.4%
Lake Bluff is a village in Shields Township, Lake County, Illinois, United States. The population was 7,469 as of 2015.
5. Hawthorn Woods
Population: 7,590 Median Income: $156,413
Unemployment Rate: 2.7%
Poverty Rate: 3.5%
Population: 7,844Median Income: $172,949
Unemployment Rate: 4.4%
Poverty Rate: 0.5%
Inverness is a suburban village in Cook County, Illinois, United States. The population was 7,399 at the 2010 census.
Population: 18,686Median Income: $143,729
Unemployment Rate: 3.7%
Poverty Rate: 2.9%
Deerfield is a village in Lake County, Illinois, United States, approximately 25 miles north of Chicago with a small portion extending into Cook County, Illinois. The population was 18,225 at the 2010 census, a decline of 175 from 2000.
Population: 33,538Median Income: $115,243
Unemployment Rate: 3.5%
Poverty Rate: 2.7%
Northbrook is an affluent suburb of Chicago, located at the northern edge of Cook County, Illinois, United States.
9. Oak Brook
Population: 7,988Median Income: $144,286
Unemployment Rate: 3.3%
Poverty Rate: 3.9%
Oak Brook is an affluent village in DuPage County with a small portion in Cook County in Illinois. The population was 7,883 at the 2010 census. A suburb of Chicago, Oak Brook serves as home to the headquarters of several notable companies and organizations including McDonald’s (now moving to Chicago), Ace Hardware, Blistex, Federal Signal, CenterPoint Properties, Sanford L.P., TreeHouse Foods, and Lions Clubs International.
Population: 27,367Median Income: $138,651
Unemployment Rate: 4.0%
Poverty Rate: 3.3%
Wilmette is a village in New Trier Township, Cook County, Illinois, United States. It is located 14 miles (23 km) north of Chicago’s downtown district (4 mi or 6 km from Chicago’s northern border) and had a population at the 2010 census of 27,087. Wilmette is considered a bedroom community in the North Shore region. In 2007, Wilmette was ranked as the seventh best place to raise children in the U.S., according to Business Week. In 2015, Wilmette was ranked the best place to live in Illinois based on a variety of factors including its low unemployment rate, median income, low housing vacancy rate, high education expenditures per student, low crime, and short commute times. Wilmette is home to two of Illinois’ 17 elementary schools (Romona Elementary School and St. Joseph School) to be awarded the 2017 National Blue Ribbon award.
There You Have It – The Richest Places In Illinois For 2018
Like we said earlier, when we set out to identify the richest places in Illinois, we weren’t sure what we’d encounter, but it ended up being some of the best places to live in Illinois.
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 Illinois, according to data:
2nd Poorest: Harvey
3rd Poorest: East St. Louis
For more Illinois reading , check out:
Detailed List Of The Richest Cities In Illinois
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