Median family income by family type by county

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Why This Indicator Matters

One way of understanding the economic health of American families is to observe the total income of the family in the middle of the distribution, otherwise known as median family income. Half of all families have total incomes above the median and half have total incomes at or below the median. Across the nation in 2016, the median income of families with children was $64,379 (U.S. Census Bureau 2016a). Median family income also varies dramatically by family structure, as married couple families with children tend to have higher median income than their single-parent counterparts. Indeed, median family income of married-couple families with children was about $87,757 in 2016, whereas their single-father counterparts had median total family income of $39,616 and single-mother counterparts had just $25,130 (U.S. Census Bureau 2016b). 

New Hampshire families tended to do better than the national average in terms of median family income across 2012–2016, though the patterns across family structure categories remain roughly the same. In New Hampshire, the median family income for families with children was $83,716 in 2016, well above the national median income for families with children cited above ($64,379). Likewise, families headed by married parents had a median income of $104,094, single-father families had a median of $46,626, and single-mother families had a median of $31,277. Importantly, however, these median incomes for single-parent families are below estimates of required income from MIT’s Living Wage Calculator. A New Hampshire family composed of a parent and child would need approximately $53,387 in order to meet their basic needs for housing, food, child care, medical expenses, transportation, etc. This means that more than half of single-parent families in New Hampshire do not have the required income necessary to meet only these vital needs. 

U.S. Census Bureau (2016a). American Community Survey, Table B19125, 2012–2016 5-Year Estimates.
U.S. Census Bureau (2016b). American Community Survey, Table B19126, 2012–2016 5-Year Estimates.

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Data Provided By

Definitions: This indicator reports the median family income for families with children by family type across 2012–2016.

Note, this indicator is at the family-level, but families are classified based on householder marital and fertility status. Households can have multiple families.

Data Source: Source: U.S. Census, American Community Survey, 2012–2016
U.S. Census Bureau (2016a). American Community Survey, Table B19126, Median Family Income in the Past 12 Months by Family Type by Presence of Own Children Under 18 Years 2012–2016 5-Year Estimates.

Footnotes: 95% confidence interval around estimate.