Where will you likely find yourself the poorest person in town? There are places where even a well-to-do household, by normal standards, would have a hard time keeping up with the Joneses.
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To identify the 50 richest areas in the U.S. for Businessweek.com, Little Rock data company Gadberry Group looked at all Zip Codes in the U.S. with more than 100 households and ranked them by the average income and net worth of their households. The area’s population change since 2000 was also taken into consideration, though only as a minor factor, and no areas with a decrease in number of households, where wealth might become less concentrated, were included. The results include many places around New York,Washington, D.C., and Silicon Valley.
As Gadberry’s survey mainly captured data on primary residences, many affluent second-home markets, such as the Hamptons on Long Island andAspen, Colo., did not make the top 50. Also, neighborhoods in such urban areas as Manhattanand San Francisco that have pockets of extreme wealth did not make the list because they have a greater diversity of income earners.
Here’s America’s 10 richest zip codes:
|No. 10 – Santa Monica, CA.
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No. 10 Richest Zip Code: 90402
Location: Santa Monica, Calif.
No. households: 5,452
Pct. change in no. households since 2000: 3.16
Average household income: $266,243
Average household net worth: $1,494,010
This section of Santa Monica has some of the most expensive houses in Los Angeles County. It includes the chic North of Montana neighborhood, known for palm and pine trees along its streets, attractive homes, and an excellent school system, according to real estate site northofmontana.com. The median home value in 90402 was $1,995,300 in September, Zillow.com estimates. The population is mostly elite couples and singles.
|No. 9 – Los Altos, CA.
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No. 9 Richest Zip Code: 94022
Location: Los Altos, Calif.
No. households: 7,103
Pct. change in no. households since 2000: 3.23
Average household income: $256,476
Average household net worth: $1,563,480
Adjacent to the No. 23 richest Zip Code, 94024, and roughly 40 miles south of San Francisco, this area includes Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, and Palo Alto Hills. Downtown Los Altos, a six-block triangle, has more than 150 shops and also hosts farmers markets and movie nights, among other community activities, says the Los Altos Village Assn. Many luxury homes in the Los Altos Hills overlook rolling hills and the South and East Bay communities. Elite couples and singles are the predominant population. Los Altos has the highest household net worth of all the Zip codes in this ranking.
|No. 8 – Purchase, NY.
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No. 8 Richest Zip Code: 10577
Location: Purchase, N.Y.
No. households: 834
Pct. change in no. households since 2000: 14.09
Average household income: $268,696
Average household net worth: $1,503,911
The headquarters of MasterCard (MA) and Pepsico (PEP), Purchase also is home to many commuters to New York City, about 25 miles away. Many residents work in health care, professional services, and finance and insurance, according to Census Bureau data. Elite couples and singles predominate.
|No. 7 – Gladwyne, PA.
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No. 7 Richest Zip Code: 19035
Location: Gladwyne, Pa.
No. households: 1,495
Pct. change in no. households since 2000: 2.47
Average household income: $331,840
Average household net worth: $1,483,586
Once a summer destination for wealthy Philadelphians, Gladwyne, on the Schuylkill River. has become a wealthy year-round community. Its many attractive residences had a median value of $800,500 in September, according to Zillow.com estimates. At publication time, the area’s most expensive home listed for sale on Zillow.com was a $14.9 million mansion at 1211 Mirabeau Lane. The predominant group in this Zip Code is elite couples and singles.
|No. 6 – Bel Air, CA.
Photo: Jonathan Alcorn/Bloomberg
No. 6 Richest Zip Code: 90077
Location: Los Angeles, Calif.
No. households: 3,553
Pct. change in no. households since 2000: 0.11
Average household income: $290,802
Average household net worth: $1,531,147
The 90077 Zip Code refers to the Bel Air section of Los Angeles, home to celebrities and executives. The district has many expensive residences by the Bel Air Country Club and houses with views of the surrounding valley, according to belair-realestate.com. In addition to mansions, Bel Air has ranch-style properties. It is next door to the fourth-richest Zip Code, 90210. The predominant population in this the Bel Air area is elite couples and singles.
|No. 5 – Portola Valley, CA.
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No. 5 Richest Zip Code: 94028
Location: Portola Valley, Calif.
No. households: 2,579
Pct. change in no. households since 2000: 3.28
Average household income: $270,922
Average household net worth: $1,531,291
This Portola Valley Zip code is adjacent to the No. 9 richest Zip Code, 94022, and the No. 32 richest, 94304. The town of Portola Valley is just west of Stanford University in a valley by the San Andreas Fault. It offers a trail system, scenic roads, open space, and natural views, according to the town. Elite couples and singles are the predominant inhabitants.
|No. 4 – Beverly Hills, CA.
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No. 4 Richest Zip Code: 90210
Location: Beverly Hills, Calif.
No. households: 9,245
Pct. change in no. households since 2000: 3.71
Average household income: $278,757
Average household net worth: $1,504,166
This neighborhood near the foothills of the Santa Monica Mountains, made famous by the television series Beverly Hills, 90210, is dominated by opulent homes. Rodeo Drive, between Wilshire Boulevard and Sunset Boulevard, has an area of large houses referred to as the Flats, as well as a posh shopping district, according to Sotheby’s International Realty. Zillow.com estimates that in September, 90210′s median home value was $2,557,700. The area is adjacent to the sixth-richest Zip Code, 90077. The predominant residents of 90210 are executives and professionals in their 40s and 50s with no children.
|No. 3 – Kenilworth, IL.
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No. 3 Richest Zip Code: 60043
Location: Kenilworth, Ill.
No. households: 810
Pct. change in no. households since 2000: 1.00
Average household income: $323,588
Average household net worth: $1,558,833
The village of Kenilworth, about 17 miles from downtown Chicago and south of 60093, the No. 14 richest Zip Code, is the wealthiest area in the Midwest, according to Gadberry’s analysis. The average household income in this exclusive North Shore suburb is $323,588. Elite couples and singles are the predominant residents.
|No. 2 – Old Westbury, NY.
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No. 2 Richest Zip Code: 11568
Location: Old Westbury, N.Y.
No. households: 1,047
Pct. change in no. households since 2000: 8.61
Average household income: $282,981
Average household net worth: $1,547,866
On Long Island’s north shore, about 25 miles from Manhattan, Old Westbury is New York’s most affluent suburb, according to Gadberry Group. It is home to the Meadowbrook Polo Club, the country’s oldest polo field, and Old Westbury Gardens, built in 1906. The predominant group is elite couples and singles.
|No. 1 – Palm Beach, FL.
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No. 1 Richest Zip Code: 33480
Location: Palm Beach, Fla.
No. households: 5,505*
Pct. change in no. households since 2000: 13.76*
Average household income: $370,136
Average household net worth: $1,486,123
The town of Palm Beach—in America’s richest Zip Code, 33480—is a 16-mile barrier island with the Atlantic Ocean on its eastern boundary and Lake Worth on the west. High-end shopping and dining establishments can be found on Worth Avenue, and the island provides polo, golf, tennis, yachting, and deep-sea fishing, according to Sotheby’s International Realty. The predominant group is executives and professionals in their 40s and 50s with no children. The median age, according to 2010 census data, was 67.5.
*As Gadberry Group’s estimates for Palm Beach include some part-year residents, fi