The Richest County in Every State

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Lincoln County, South Dakota
Source: Wikimedia Commons

41. Lincoln, South Dakota
> County median household income: $76,094
> State median household income: $50,957
> Poverty rate: 4.4%
> Nov. unemployment: 2.0%

The typical Lincoln County household earns $76,094 a year, roughly $25,000 more than the median household income of $50,957 for South Dakota as a whole. One reason for the high earnings in the county is likely the area’s strong job market. Just 2.0% of the county’s workforce is unemployed, nearly the lowest unemployment rate of any county in the nation. Lincoln County also has a fairly qualified labor force. More than two in five county adults have at least a bachelor’s degree, far more than the college attainment rate statewide.

Williamson County, Tennessee
Source: Wikimedia Commons

42. Williamson, Tennessee
> County median household income: $96,565
> State median household income: $45,219
> Poverty rate: 5.1%
> Nov. unemployment: 3.4%

Located less than 30 miles from Nashville, Williamson County is home to some of the wealthiest suburban communities in Tennessee. The typical county home is worth $348,600, more than twice the median home value of $142,100 across the state. For many county residents, the proximity to Nashville may provide access to the high-paying jobs that tend to be concentrated in major metropolitan areas. Roughly one-third of resident county workers are employed in Davidson County, where Nashville is located. The typical Williamson household earns $96,565 a year, far more than the $45,219 median household income statewide.

Water fountain in Oyster Creek Park, Sugar Land, Fort Bend County, Texas, USA
Source: Thinkstock

43. Fort Bend, Texas
> County median household income: $89,152
> State median household income: $53,207
> Poverty rate: 8.2%
> Nov. unemployment: 4.8%

Located just outside of Houston, Fort Bend County is one of many suburban counties in close proximity to major metropolitan areas among the wealthiest in the country. According to the county’s economic development department, Fort Bend has more planned communities than any other county in the state. The typical household in Fort Bend County earns $89,152 a year, roughly $36,000 more than the typical household in Texas.

Summit County, Utah
Source: Wikimedia Commons

44. Summit, Utah
> County median household income: $91,773
> State median household income: $60,727
> Poverty rate: 7.8%
> Nov. unemployment: 2.9%

With the third highest average elevation of any county, Summit County is a mountainous region with an economy that benefits heavily from skiing and recreation spending. Summit is home to some of the wealthiest vacation towns in Utah. The typical home in the metro area is worth $497,300, more than twice the $215,900 median home value for Utah as a whole and among the highest of any county nationwide. County residents also have the highest incomes in the state. The typical Summit County household earns $91,773 a year, roughly $31,000 more than the $60,727 the typical Utah household earns.

Burlington (Chittenden County), Vermont
Source: Thinkstock

45. Chittenden, Vermont
> County median household income: $65,350
> State median household income: $55,176
> Poverty rate: 11.4%
> Nov. unemployment: 2.2%

As is generally the case in other states, Vermont’s richest county, Chittenden, is its most densely populated county, with approximately 146 people per square mile. While certainly no metropolis, Burlington, Vermont’s largest city, is entirely encompassed by Chittenden County. The University of Vermont and its affiliated medical center operate in the area, and the relatively high-paying jobs at the institution help explain Chittenden’s state-leading median annual household income of $65,350. The typical Vermont household earns $55,176 a year, slightly higher than the national median household income of $53,889 a year.