In a recent study, we analyzed and identified the richest cities in New Jersey based on scoring several key financial factors. This time around, we’re looking at New Jersey’s neighbor to the west — Pennsylvania, the Keystone State.
We analyzed over 17,00 cities in the state in order to identify the richest cities in Pennsylvania. The way we evaluated and scored each city’s ranking is detailed below. Read on to find out what the richest city in Pennsylvania is, plus the top 50 wealthiest cities in the state overall.
What Are the Richest Cities in Pennsylvania?
In order to assemble a list of the richest cities in Pennsylvania, we pulled data from the Census Bureau’s 2022 American Community Survey, and we constructed a four-factor scoring system to help identify the wealthiest cities in Pennsylvania:
- Median household income
- Mean (average) household income
- Median home value
- Median property taxes paid
When it comes to Census data, for certain factors its numbers have upper limits. For example, for median household income, the Census Bureau has an upper limit of “$250,000+”. For median home value, the upper limit is “$2,000,000+”. Lastly, for median property taxes paid, the upper limit is “$10,000+”. For these reasons, the mean or average household income dataset is critical because the Census Bureau has exact figures for it. All four of these metrics were scored, added up, and then ranked by the cities’ combined scores.
Below you’ll find a table detailing the top 50 richest cities in Pennsylvania and their respective dollar figures for each metric:
The No. 1 richest city in Pennsylvania in our ranking is Sewickley Heights, a borough composed of just 276 households, situated in the Pittsburgh metro area. In Sewickley Heights, the median household income is $228,000, while its mean household income of $381,964, is the highest in Pennsylvania. The reported median home value in Sewickley Heights is also the highest in our study, at $947,600, and its median property taxes paid exceeds $10,000 per year. Not surprisingly for the richest city in Pennsylvania, according to Data USA, the main occupation by employment is Management Occupations, accounting for 27.5% of the workforce, followed by Health Diagnosing & Treating Practitioners & Other Technical Occupations, which accounts for 16.8% of the workforce. The top three industries in Sewickley Heights are Professional, Scientific, & Technical Services (17.9% of the workforce), Manufacturing (16.8% of the workforce), and Health Care & Social Assistance (16.2% of the workforce).
The second richest city in Pennsylvania is Villanova, which is a suburb of Philadelphia and, unsurprisingly, home to Villanova University, one of the top colleges in Pennsylvania. Villanova has 802 total households and a median household income in excess of $250,000, the only city in our study to have this characteristic. Like Sewickley Heights, the median property taxes paid per year is in excess of $10,000, while the median home value in Villanova is $780,200. The average household income in Villanova is the second highest in Pennsylvania, at $344,997, which is around $37,000 less than Sewickley Heights’ average income.
Coming in as the No. 3 richest city in Pennsylvania is Fox Chapel, a borough of more than 1,700 households, located in the Pittsburgh metro area like No. 1 Sewickley Heights. Fox Chapel has the second highest median household income, at $247,930, and the third highest mean household income, at $341,148. The reported median home value in Fox Chapel is $769,300, with the median property taxes paid per year being in excess of $10,000. The borough’s employment breakdown is similar to Sewickley Heights’ breakdown. According to Data USA, Management Occupations employs the highest percentage of the workforce, at 23.4%, followed by Health Diagnosing & Treating Practitioners & Other Technical Occupations, at 21.6%. Looking at the top-employing industries, the main ones in Fox Chapel are Health Care & Social Assistance (24.3% of the workforce), Professional, Scientific, & Technical Services (15.5% of the workforce), and Manufacturing (9.6% of the workforce).
The fourth richest city in Pennsylvania is Merion Station, an unincorporated community in Lower Merion Township and part of the Philadelphia Main Line. Merion Station is a bit larger than the top three richest cities in Pennsylvania, having 1,847 total households. With a median household income of $233,340, Merion Station has the third highest median income in Pennsylvania, while its average household income of $288,309 is the fifth highest. The median home value is a reported $693,800, with the median property taxes paid annually exceeding $10,000.
The No. 5 richest city in Pennsylvania is yet another suburb of Pittsburgh — Edgeworth. Right next-door to Sewickley Heights, Edgeworth has a median household income of $190,000, which is the eighth highest in the study; however, its mean household income of $307,396 is the fourth highest in Pennsylvania. Like all the top five richest cities in Pennsylvania, the median property taxes paid annually in Edgeworth is in excess of $10,000, while its reported median home value is $628,000. The economic landscape in Edgeworth is similar to both Fox Chapel and Sewickley Heights. According to Data USA, the top industries in terms of employment are Health Care & Social Assistance (19.8% of the workforce), Professional, Scientific, & Technical Services (17.8% of the workforce), and Educational Services (11.1% of the workforce).
Out of the top 50 richest cities in Pennsylvania, the largest is Franklin Park, which has 5,445 households and a population of over 15,000. Franklin Park, like many of the wealthiest cities in Pennsylvania, is in the Pittsburgh metro area, located in Union County. The median household income in Franklin Park is $142,850, while its mean household income is $186,411.