Where the 1 Percent Live
Over the past few months, Occupy Wall Street actions have sprung up all across the United States. In the wake of Wall Street’s meltdown, protestors have taken up a new cause: Calling out the income disparity between the top 1 percent, who possess an estimated 25 percent of American wealth, and everyone else — otherwise known as the 99 percent.
While the Occupy protests are taking place in cities like Atlanta, Harrisburg, PA., Seattle, Oakland, Des Moines and dozens of other locales across the country, those are not necessarily the places where the 1 percent live.
A stellar report by the Atlantic magazine delves into this issue. Using IRS data, the Atlantic report shows that the 1 percent — Americans earning at least $516,633 in 2010 – are concentrated in large metropolitan areas led by New York, Los Angeles and Chicago.
Here’s a look at homes for sale in these select areas:
According to data from the Brookings Institute, nearly 12 percent of high-income homes are located in the New York city region. Specifically, the Upper East and West Sides and Greenwich Village hold the vast majority of these income earners. This statistic is reflected in real estate data: the median home value for the Upper West Side is currently $977,600 (rising at a rate of 12.5 percent year-over-year.) Upper East Side home values are currently $965,300 (rising 12.8 percent year-over-year.) Greenwich Village has a median home value of $1,115,900 and a yearly increase of 21.6 percent. Unlike other parts of America, the rich in these highly-populated urban areas don’t live in enormous mansions, but penthouses with sprawling city views or compact townhouses.
43 5th Ave FL 5, New York NY
For sale: $17,000,000
Greenwich Village has been the spiritual home of painters, poets, musicians and other Beatnik free spirits, but tough news for the struggling artists who think they might find an affordable place to crash. Greenwich Village has long gone upscale, as this penthouse demonstrates. Sitting on streets lined with shops and restaurants, this 5-bedroom, 4.5-bath home features one-percent worthy details like intricate moldings and wainscoting, stained white oak flooring and what looks to be a painted orange ceiling. Assuming a 20 percent down payment on a 30-year mortgage, the monthly payment is $63,556, according to Zillow’s mortgage calculator.
Just north of the Big Apple in Westchester County is another concentration of high-income earners. Continually ranked by Money magazine as one of the top-earning towns, Scarsdale is full of residents who prefer to live in the quiet suburb over the dense and intense isle of Manhattan. Scarsdale is populated with gracious Tudors and Colonials where the area’s current median home value is $1,086,800.
18 Sherbrooke Rd, Scarsdale NY
For sale: $6,995,000
Like many Scarsdale real estate listings, this home is a traditional Colonial, but what sets it apart is the indoor spa complex which includes a full-size pool and painted sky mural on the ceiling. The home has 6 bedrooms, 8 bathrooms and 7,800 square feet of living space.
When it comes to enclaves in the Windy City that cater to the wealthy, Lake Shore Drive jumps to mind. However, another ZIP code where a high concentration of high income earners can be found is Lincoln Park. It is one of the city’s most historically significant neighborhoods and is studded with attractions like the Lincoln Park Zoo, Chicago History Museum, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum and Lincoln Park Conservatory. The coveted neighborhood noted for its historic mansions is 2.5 miles north of downtown Chicago and is bordered on the east by Lake Michigan. Median Lincoln Park home values are not quite up to New York numbers and are currently $333,900.
1956 N Orchard St, Chicago IL
For sale: $5,999,000
This Lincoln Park home for sale was built in 2001, but fits in with the Victorian mansions that dot Lincoln Park streets with its limestone and brick exterior, four fireplaces, curved staircase and 12-foot ceilings. The 7-bedroom, 6.5-bath home is only a mile from the Lincoln Park Zoo and other attractions.
This San Jose suburb is synonymous with the billionaires of Silicon Valley. Home to Apple, Cupertino is called “the heart of Silicon Valley” and also holds management offices for IBM, Oracle and Hewlett Packard. It’s just a quick hop over to headquarters for some other upstart startups: Facebook and Google. Like most towns in California’s Silicon Valley, Cupertino home values are very high, resting currently at $1,044,600.
22335 Regnart Rd, Cupertino CA
For sale: $2,998,888
Nestled in the foothills overlooking the Santa Clara valley, this Cupertino house for sale has recently been reduced in price by $250,094. The luxury 5-bedroom, 5-bath home sits on 2.3 wooded acres with panoramic views of San Jose and Santa Clara city lights.
Sugar Land, TX
The extended Houston metro is one of the fastest-growing areas in the country, according to the 2010 Census, and the affluent Sugar Land is included in this population uptick. Founded as a sugar plantation, the city is still home to Imperial Sugar and its main refinery, although its foundation as a blue-collar community is dwindling. While Sugar Land is home to many high-income earners, Houston real estate remains relatively affordable with a median list price of $165,000.
21 Grand Mnr, Sugar Land TX
For sale: $9,795,000
This Sugar Land home for sale is situated in an exclusive neighborhood on 1.27 acres, which include two pools and a fairway. The 6-bed, 9-bath home has a separate master wing with oversized master bedroom with fireplace, a breakfast bar, bath with steam shower and private gym.
The place where horse country meets the land of the Beltway elite’s tony estates, this Washington D.C. suburb holds 0.2 percent of all the nation’s very high-income households. According to 2009 Census data, the median household income $157,738. Potomac home values hit at $777,300.
7013 Natelli Woods Ln, Bethesda MD
For sale: $6,999,999
At 35,000 square feet, this Potomac home for sale is by far the largest on this list. Each of the 12 bedrooms include an en suite bath, bringing the home’s bathroom count up to 15.5. Other staggering details of the home include 49 closets, 6 bathrooms and 331 recessed lights, one indoor pool and one grand foyer.
Where the 1 Percent Live.
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