When it comes to creating top ten lists on wealthy cities in a specific region, there are many factors that one can use to figure wealth. If you have read my last article on the subject, Top 10 Wealthiest Illinois Suburbs of Chicago, then you will note that I used per capita income as the sole determinant in creating that list. However, since this list is considering only those cities with 50,000 people or more in the Midwest, I felt that household income was a truer way of determining overall wealth than per capita income. For purposes of this article the "Midwest" consists of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri and Kansas. So without further prelude, please enjoy the list!
Median Household: $98,488
Median Home: $389,000
Once a quaint farming town, Naperville has quickly turned into the fifth largest city in the state of Illinois and the wealthiest city in the Midwest with a population over 50,000. In 2006, Money Magazine called this suburban city of Chicago the second best place to live in America and with its scenic downtown, chic stores and immense choice of wine bars and eateries, who can blame them. If there is one bone to pick with Naperville (besides the "filled train station parking lot by 5am problem"), it is that its residents are said to be a bit on the pretentious side, although that has not been my experience. When speaking about affluent cities in the Midwest, this fun-filled city sets the pace for the rest.
Eden Prairie, Minnesota
Median Household: $93,717
Median Home: $323,132
Up northwest of Illinois sits a much different type of city in Eden Prairie. With rolling hills, large lakes, 170 miles of multi-use trails and 2,250 acres of parks, Money Magazine named this wealthy city the best place to live in America in 2010. Located 11 miles southwest of Minneapolis, Eden Prairie's high median household income is one of the highest in Minnesota.
Maple Grove, Minnesota
Median Household: $92,605
Median Home: $260,151
In the northwest region of the Minneapolis-St.Paul metro lays "The Groovy Grove", as it has come to be known by Minnesotans. Maple Grove is second, only behind Bloomington (home of The Mall of America), for most retail stores in the state. The city houses Minnesota's first "lifestyle center", a 412,000 square foot mid-century style American village that encompasses stores that improve ones lifestyle like William-Sonoma and Pottery Barn. There is no denying that with a median household income of $92,605 and a relatively low median home price, residents of Maple Grove have plenty of discretionary income to play with on the weekends.
West Bloomfield Township, Michigan
Median Household: $89,635
Median Home: $275,300
This wealthy Midwest city should come to no surprise to most, as the township of West Bloomfield has graced the top of wealthy city lists for years, even making it as high as #6 on the Highest-Income Places in the United States with a Population over 50,000 list in recent years. While rapper Marshall Mathers resides in West Bloomfield, the city is also known for its large Jewish population.
Median Household: $87,133
Median Home: $304,340
The wealthy Midwest city of Carmel was CNN Money Magazine's top choice for "Best Places to Live in America" in 2012 and is in one of the fastest growing counties in the nation. This affluent city also has more roundabouts than any other city in the country, demolishing 78 sets of traffic signals recently and has been described as the Milton Keynes of the US.
Median Household: $85,127
Median Home: $231,000
Considered the safest city in Michigan and the 19th safest in the nation, Troy's affluence is only one reason to consider living here, as in 2008 it was also considered the fourth most affordable city to live in in the United States. If that isn't enough to tempt you, hockey fans (most of Michigan's population) will love the fact that the Red Wings' practice training facility is located in this affluent Midwestern gem-of-a-city.
Median Household: $83,680
Median Home: $237,300
Stepping back into the Chicagoland for the next two cities, Bolingbrook neighbors Naperville to the south, and is the 17th largest city in Illinois. Much of the rollover from Naperville extends into Bolingbrook, where even parts of the city are eligible to send their children to high schools in Naperville.
Median Household: $82,091
Median Home: $347,970
Home to the prestigious Wheaton College, this wealthy Midwestern city was listed by Money Magazine as one of the 25 highest earning towns in the United States in 2010. Only about a 10 minute drive from Naperville (wealthiest city in the Midwest with population over 50,000), Wheaton has the Chicago area's "narrowest" store in The Popcorn Shop, which is in the alley between two buildings, using the walls of each building as its own. At just under 53,000 residents, Wheaton makes the list by the narrowest of margins to come in as the eighth most wealthy cities in the Midwest with a population over 50,000.
Median Household: $81,748
Median Home: $328,300
As you are coming to realize, Money Magazine loves the Midwest due to its low cost-of-living:income ratio. Plymouth is but another city gracing the top of "America's Best Places to Live in 2008", coming in at number one. With easy access to Minneapolis-St.Paul, Plymouth allows residents to live in a fully functioning and autonomous city while still being able to enjoy larger city life only a short drive away.
Charter Township of Canton, Michigan
Median Household: $80,965
Median Home: $211,00
The tenth wealthiest city in the Midwest (with a population over 50,000) is the commuter town of Canton, about 23 miles west of Detroit and 17 miles east of Ann Arbor. One of Michigan's fastest growing cities, Canton has a very low average age of only 33, making it the youngest city on the list. When it comes to raising a family in Michigan, not many cities can compare to this one due to the high income and low home prices.
Well there you have it, the Top 10 Wealthiest Midwest Cities (with a Population over 50,000)! Please leave a comment or question bellow this article. In the mean time, check out some of my other articles: