The amount of money you need to be considered middle class has risen precipitously in the past decade.

In 2012, a household income of $35,364 qualified you as a member of the middle class in the U.S.; in 2022, $50,099 was the lowest minimum household income threshold.

On the other end, in 2012, the highest household income considered to be middle class was $106,092, but as of 2022, that high end of the middle-class household income spectrum had reached $150,298. O

verall, the household income required to be considered middle class in the U.S. has increased by 41.67% during that time frame.


As reported by CNBC, GOBankingRates determined the income range needed to qualify as middle class in all 50 states using the latest available data from 2022 on household median income from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2022 American Community Survey.

The personal finance site defines “middle class” as households with an annual income that is two-thirds to double a state’s median income.

It will come as no surprise that one of the highest thresholds to be middle class is in New Jersey. In fact, according to GoBankingRates, we are second, trailing only Maryland. New Jersey and Maryland also have the highest median income overall.


In New Jersey, the lower end of middle class, or the least you need to be considered middle class is $64,571. You are still middle class if you earn $194,252; that’s the upper limit in New Jersey. That’s quite a spread from floor to ceiling.

Of course, there are variables not accounted for in the calculation: how many people you’re supporting being the biggest one.

Bottom line: New Jersey is expensive.

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