These Are The 10 Richest Cities In South Dakota

We analyzed over 17 places in South Dakota to determine where the 1% live.

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Pierre, Brandon, Rapid Valley: These cities aren’t just some of the best places to live in South Dakota. They are also home to some of the richest people in the Mount Rushmore State.

Pierre in particular houses the richest residents in the state thanks, in part, to a median household income of $52,961 and a ridiculously low poverty rate of 10.0%.

If you’re thinking of moving to one of these towns, you’ll probably need to start saving. The richest places in South Dakota share common characteristics such as having a genius level populous, sky high home prices, and a Pleasantville level of married couples.

After analyzing Census data from the 2010-2014 American Community Survey for the 17 places in South Dakota with more than 5,000 people, we were left with this set of the ten richest places in the Mount Rushmore State:

  1. Pierre
  2. Brandon
  3. Rapid Valley
  4. Aberdeen
  5. Mitchell
  6. Sioux Falls
  7. Watertown
  8. Belle Fourche
  9. Box Elder
  10. Sturgis

For more on how we calculated the top ten, read on or skip to the end for the full list. Oh, and the poorest place in South Dakota? That would be Vermillion.

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How We Determined The Richest Places In South Dakota

The first thing that comes to most people’s minds when they think about determining the richest places is simply how much people earn. After all, rich people have really high salaries.

However, we don’t think 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 2010-2014 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 17 places with more than 5,000 people in South Dakota, we ranked each place from 1 to 17 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, Pierre, crowned the “Richest Place In South Dakota”.

You can learn more about the top ten below or skip to the end to see the rankings for all 17 places.

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1. Pierre

Pierre, South Dakota

Source: Facebook User Watertown Sd Police Department

Population: 13,885
Median Income: 5296100.0%
Poverty Level: 10.0%
Unemployment Rate: 2.3%

2. Brandon

Brandon, South Dakota

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 9,350
Median Income: 6979200.0%
Poverty Level: 6.7%
Unemployment Rate: 3.9%

3. Rapid Valley

Population: 8,619
Median Income: 5894500.0%
Poverty Level: 3.6%
Unemployment Rate: 4.8%

4. Aberdeen

Aberdeen, South Dakota

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 26,979
Median Income: 4754000.0%
Poverty Level: 13.1%
Unemployment Rate: 3.0%

5. Mitchell

Mitchell, South Dakota

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 15,490
Median Income: 4762200.0%
Poverty Level: 11.7%
Unemployment Rate: 3.7%

6. Sioux Falls

Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 160,964
Median Income: 5260700.0%
Poverty Level: 10.9%
Unemployment Rate: 4.6%

7. Watertown

Watertown, South Dakota


Population: 21,795
Median Income: 4518500.0%
Poverty Level: 12.3%
Unemployment Rate: 3.5%

8. Belle Fourche

Belle Fourche, South Dakota

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 5,677
Median Income: 4135600.0%
Poverty Level: 14.9%
Unemployment Rate: 2.9%

9. Box Elder

Box Elder, South Dakota

Source: Flickr

Population: 8,683
Median Income: 4504100.0%
Poverty Level: 7.4%
Unemployment Rate: 4.8%

10. Sturgis

Sturgis, South Dakota

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 6,652
Median Income: 3769700.0%
Poverty Level: 15.4%
Unemployment Rate: 2.3%

There You Have It – The Richest Places In South Dakota

Like we said earlier, when we set out to identify the richest places in South Dakota, we weren’t sure what we’d encounter, but it ended up being some of the best places to live in South Dakota. 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 SD, according to data:

Poorest: Vermillion
2nd Poorest: Madison
3rd Poorest: Spearfish
For more South Dakota reading , check out:

Detailed List Of Richest Places In South Dakota

City Rank Population Median Income Poverty Level Unemployment Rate
Pierre 1 13,885 $52,961 10.0% 2.3%
Brandon 2 9,350 $69,792 6.7% 3.9%
Rapid Valley 3 8,619 $58,945 3.6% 4.8%
Aberdeen 4 26,979 $47,540 13.1% 3.0%
Mitchell 5 15,490 $47,622 11.7% 3.7%
Sioux Falls 6 160,964 $52,607 10.9% 4.6%
Watertown 7 21,795 $45,185 12.3% 3.5%
Belle Fourche 8 5,677 $41,356 14.9% 2.9%
Box Elder 9 8,683 $45,041 7.4% 4.8%
Sturgis 10 6,652 $37,697 15.4% 2.3%
Yankton 11 14,513 $42,250 15.9% 3.7%
Rapid City 12 70,126 $46,392 14.3% 5.9%
Huron 13 12,982 $39,927 21.1% 3.1%
Brookings 14 22,645 $41,061 28.4% 4.1%
Spearfish 15 10,836 $39,758 20.6% 4.5%
Madison 16 6,830 $37,045 17.4% 5.0%
Vermillion 17 10,697 $28,690 42.7% 9.7%

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