I've always wondered what it means to be "middle class."

I mean, I guess I have a pretty good idea. If I had to put it into words, I'd probably say that middle-class families make enough money to squeak by each month, drive fairly reliable cars, can pretty much pay the important bills (even if they are a little late), and maybe spring for an occasional family vacation. If something unexpected comes up, though, it hurts, and they feel the financial pain.

The financial setback could take months to recover from.

But what is the actual definition of middle class? How much money do you have to make to officially be a member of the working middle class? The answer greatly depends upon where you live. For example, someone making your exact salary that you earn here on the SouthCoast would live a significantly better life (financially speaking) in places such as Mississippi, Oklahoma and Kansas.

So, what about the SouthCoast?  How much money do you have to make in order to be in the middle class here?  We turned to the latest U.S. census numbers to get an idea.

While there was no official data for what we call the SouthCoast, we did find numbers for Bristol County.  According to the census, the median household income for a family here in Bristol County is $74,290.  The figures had been updated as recently as last year, so they are relatively current data.

In order to find out if you are a member of the middle class, we used a calculator provided by Pew Research. Pew defines middle class as two-thirds to twice the median household income, adjusted for household size. Adjusting for Bristol County's median household income, you would be living a middle-class life here if your household is making between $49,000 and $148,000. Roughly half of American households are considered "middle class."

Judging from these numbers, a good majority of the SouthCoast is considered middle class, as well.

We ranked SouthCoast's cities and towns by average household income. The highest incomes weren't always found in the places you might expect. See where your city or town ranks below.

Remember, these are average household incomes, not individual incomes.

Ranked: SouthCoast Cities and Towns Average Household Income

Here is a ranking of all of the SouthCoast's cities and town's household incomes, using U.S. Census data.

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