How Much Money Do You Need to be ‘Middle Class’ in Wyoming?
How do you know you've made it into "the middle class" here in America? In the 1960s, the middle class meant two cars, a house, and the occasional vacation on a single income. That's not the case today.
According to PEW Research, the middle class has been a shrinking demographic since the 1970s. And, it's getting harder to qualify for "middle class" status in most states as the cost of living continues to climb while salaries drag behind.
So, that got me wondering, what does someone have to make to qualify as "middle class" in Wyoming?
According to a survey by Go Banking Rates, the average middle-class salary in Wyoming (circa 2022) starts at $49,018 a year and can range as high as $191,628, depending on family size. Here's a breakdown of what a middle-class salary looks like in the Cowboy State:
- 2-person family: $49,018 to $146,322
- 3-person family: $54,955 to $164,046
- 4-person family: $64,195.38 to $191,628
The findings came by analyzing data from the U.S. Census Bureau's 2019 American Community Survey to gather the details. The numbers have likely shifted slightly in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and the rising costs of energy Wyoming has seen in late 2022 and early 2023.
Is It Easy to Qualify for Middle Class in Wyoming?
According to the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services, the average statewide wage in Wyoming during the first quarter of 2023 was $4,597.67 - or roughly $55,100 a year. ZipRecruiter reported a higher income for the state at just over $62,000 in December 2022. For a 2-person household, both salary averages fall solidly in the middle-class spectrum.
However, individuals with families will need a larger salary to meet middle-class standards. According to the Living Wage calculator by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), two working adults with three children would need to make $25.71 an hour to make a living wage.
How Does Wyoming Stack Up Against Neighboring States for Middle-Class Populations?
According to the Go Banking Rates survey, Montana, Colorado, and Idaho have middle-class standards close to Wyoming. Colorado residents need to make $54,159 to $161,668 for a 2-person household, Montanans need to make $43,244 to $129,086, and Idahoans need to make $41,527 to $123,960. Larger salaries are necessary for families living in major cities in each state.