Neighborhood Median Family Income: Measuring Economic Well-Being

.. Median Family Income ($MFI) and Median Household Income ($MHI) are two measures of economic well-being. Based on the 2018 American Community Survey 1-year (ACS) data, the U.S. 2018 $MFI was estimated to be $76,401 while the $MHI was estimated to be $61,937 .. both in 2018/current dollars. Create insights into patterns of well-being by neighborhood using geospatial analysis. $MFI patterns are illustrated by the following thematic pattern map.

Patterns of Economic Prosperity by Neighborhood/Census Tract
The following view shows patterns of $MFI by census tract for the inner beltway area of Houston/Harris County, TX. Income interval color patterns are shown in the inset legend. Tracts are labeled with $MFI. Click graphic for larger view. Expand browser window for best quality view. Larger view shows tracts labeled with tract code. It is easy to see how west Houston and east Houston areas differ.

– view developed with ProximityOne CV XE GIS software and related GIS project.
– these $MFI data are based on the 2018 ACS 5-year estimates.

This section focuses on $MFI but could just as well focus on $MHI and yet other related income measures. $MFI will almost always be greater that $MHI, generally by a large margin. See the U.S. 2018 $MFI and $MHI in context of related demographic-economic measure here. See more about the distinctions/definitions of families and and households below.

The ACS data are a unique source of income and related data at the neighborhood or sub-county level. View more about accessing and using the 2018 ACS 5-year estimates.

Family Definition
A family is a group of two people or more (one of whom is the householder) related by birth, marriage, or adoption and residing together; all such people (including related subfamily members) are considered as members of one family. The number of families is equal to the number of family households. However, the count of family members differs from the count of family household members because family household members include any non-relatives living in the household.

Related … an unmarried partner, also known as a domestic partner, is specifically defined as a person who shares a close personal relationship with the reference person. … Same-sex unmarried-partner families or households – reference person and unmarried partner are both male or female.

Household Definition
A household consists of all the people who occupy a housing unit. A house, an apartment or other group of rooms, or a single room, is regarded as a housing unit when it is occupied or intended for occupancy as separate living quarters; that is, when the occupants do not live with any other persons in the structure and there is direct access from the outside or through a common hall.

A household includes the related family members and all the unrelated people, if any, such as lodgers, foster children, wards, or employees who share the housing unit. A person living alone in a housing unit, or a group of unrelated people sharing a housing unit such as partners or roomers, is also counted as a household. The count of households excludes group quarters. There are two major categories of households, “family” and “nonfamily”.

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About the Author
— Warren Glimpse is former senior Census Bureau statistician responsible for innovative data access and use operations. He is also the former associate director of the U.S. Office of Federal Statistical Policy and Standards for data access and use. He has more than 20 years of experience in the private sector developing data resources and tools for integration and analysis of geographic, demographic, economic and business data. Contact Warren. Join Warren on LinkedIn.

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