1. Where Does Your Income Rank?

    Interested in knowing how your income stacks up against that of your neighbors? Check out the following Slate.com article:

    Slate: Why We Can’t Ignore Income Inequality

    Once there, scroll down about one-third of the way through the page. You’ll see a text-box tool labeled “Where Do I Stand?”; that’s what you’re looking for.

    Enter your ZIP code and your income in the boxes provided, and you’ll get to find out just how your income ranks against that of your neighbors, as well as against your state’s median income.

    FWIW, according to this tool, my income is almost double the average income of my particular ZIP code. I’m not surprised, as Lisa and I still live in the first home we ever bought. In that regard, at least, I think that “living below your means” really shows up in data like this. No chasing the Joneses in our household!

    NOTE: There’s also some pretty neat data to be found at the IncomeTaxList site, from which some of the Slate tool’s findings are derived.

  2. 5 Responses to "Where Does Your Income Rank?" ...

    1. On January 12, 2011 @ 4:38 pm,
      PersonalFinanceBlog wrote:
      #1
       



      Great little tool this!

      Thanks for the info :-) even though I’m not sure I actually want to know ‘Where I Stand’ … lol

       

       

    2. On January 14, 2011 @ 4:32 pm,
      Denise wrote:
      #2
       



      Michael, in your comment about where you rank, you seem to be tying living beneath your means with larger means. If you were talking about net worth, that would be one thing. But salary… that’s not an obvious cause-and-effect to me (it isn’t like the boss checks your bank balance and says, wow, he’s saved X amount this year, let’s give him a few thousand more to save next year), and I’m intrigued. Is that linkage intentional?

       

       

    3. On January 14, 2011 @ 7:33 pm,
      Michael wrote:
      #3
       



      Denise,

      In my head, it works like this: My “means” are my salary and other active income, which at this point are roughly 2x that of my ZIP code’s average. Thus, given that income, while Lisa and I *could* have gone and opted for a more-pricey lifestyle (read: upgrade in house / neighborhood / ZIP code) sometime between 1995 and now, we didn’t do that. Rather, we kept our very modest house, and its very modest payment. We kept to modest cars, and paid off all debts as quickly as possible.

      Would we like to buy a bigger, nicer house, in a better neighborhood? Absolutely we would, and I’m quite sure there are realtors and banks who’d scramble to make that happen. We have the income for it. But we haven’t done that; we’ve stayed beneath our financial means, and done so by design. Make sense?

       

       

    4. On January 16, 2011 @ 6:01 pm,
      Denise wrote:
      #4
       



      Your comment makes perfect sense by itself, but if it explains what you wrote in the post, you’ve lost me.

      When I see something like “my income is almost double the average income”, followed by “I’m not surprised, as…”, then I expect that the next statement will be an explanation of why the first statement is so.

      “as I’ve been putting in near 20 hours a day on various paying jobs”
      “as I chose my job specifically for its high income potential”
      “as I won a $100,000,000 lottery a few years ago, and the interest is keeping me in pizzas”

      While living frugally is good (excellent, really), I’m not seeing how that translates into a greater gross income.

       

       

    5. On January 31, 2011 @ 3:16 pm,
      Janet wrote:
      #5
       



      Very intersting. I live in a well-to-do area, so not surprisingly, I’m below the median for my area. I guess that’s what happens when people like Tiger Woods and Serena Williams live close by and skew the numbers.

       

       

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