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Emmie Martin

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In many places across the U.S., the middle class is struggling. But in others, it’s thriving.

Personal finance website SmartAsset determined the best states for the middle class, which it defined as households earning an annual income between $35,000 and $100,000 — approximately two-thirds to two times the median national income. For each state, the report took into account the percentage of middle class households, median household income adjusted for the cost of living, median home values, homeownership rates and middle class job growth between 2014 and 2018, among other factors.

The site used data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2018 1-year American Community Survey, the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Unsurprisingly, the majority of the best states for the middle class are located in the midwest, which is consistently recognized for its relatively low cost of living. States like Wisconsin and Ohio (which is number 13 on the list) have also seen the revitalization of major cities in recent years, attracting residents looking for jobs and affordable real estate.

Here’s a look at the 10 best U.S. states for the middle class, where they’re able to find jobs, own homes and keep up with the overall cost of living, according to SmartAsset.

10. Minnesota

  • Median household income, adjusted for cost of living: $72,073
  • Homeownership rate: 71.5%
  • Median home value: $235,400

9. Wisconsin

  • Median household income, adjusted for cost of living: $65,149
  • Homeownership rate: 67.1%
  • Median home value: $188,500

8. Montana

  • Median household income, adjusted for cost of living: $58,592
  • Homeownership rate: 67.5%
  • Median home value: $249,200

7. Vermont

  • Median household income, adjusted for cost of living: $59,809
  • Homeownership rate: 72.2%
  • Median home value: $233,100
  • Premium: Top States 2017- Top States to Live: Vermont Montpelier

6. South Dakota

  • Median household income, adjusted for cost of living: $62,858
  • Homeownership rate: 67.9%
  • Median home value: $171,500

5. Indiana

  • Median household income, adjusted for cost of living: $61,153
  • Homeownership rate: 68.9%
  • Median home value: $147,300

4. Nebraska

  • Median household income, adjusted for cost of living: $65,225
  • Homeownership rate: 66.1%
  • Median home value: $161,800
  • Premium: Downtown Omaha Nebraska skyline

3. Iowa

  • Median household income, adjusted for cost of living: $65,831
  • Homeownership rate: 71.3%
  • Median home value: $152,000

2. Idaho

  • Median household income, adjusted for cost of living: $59,474
  • Homeownership rate: 70.7%
  • Median home value: $233,100

1. Utah

  • Median household income, adjusted for cost of living: $73,342
  • Homeownership rate: 70.5%
  • Median home value: $303,300

Author: Emmie Martin

Source: CNBC: The 10 best US states for the middle class to find jobs and buy homes

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