Average salary in North Dakota
Learn about the average salaries and highest paying counties in North Dakota
The sheer size of North Dakota may make it difficult to define a ‘good’ salary. The Peace Garden State has its own unique financial landscape, and whether you already live in North Dakota or are thinking of making the move, it can be helpful to establish what the cost of living and earning potential look like.
According to the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center, North Dakota is one of the least expensive states to live in, with a cost of living index that is lower than the national average. The low cost of living in North Dakota may be an incentive for many to consider relocating to the state. But which cities and counties offer the highest average salaries?
Average salary in North Dakota by city
City living is often more expensive than living in more rural areas, but it’s also where the money is. North Dakota’s own cities can vary massively in average salary; cities like West Fargo and Williston command a fraction below $95,000, while Wahpeton’s average sits just above $50,000.
Average earnings by city—or any other geographical metric—is just one way of calculating wealth, and certainly shouldn’t be the only way you look at your own earning potential in a given place. It doesn’t take into account the type of jobs that people do to earn above or below this average bracket, and omits any consideration for the number of people living in a household. However, it’s certainly one way of establishing which place offers good earning opportunities.
The US Census Bureau’s latest American Community Survey has calculated the average earnings for the 10 largest cities in North Dakota, which you can find ranked below.
|City||Average household income|
Average salary in North Dakota by county
Reviewing average salaries in North Dakota by city is not necessarily an adequate metric for average salaries across the state, since it’s entirely urban focused. A good idea is to weigh these figures up against the average salary in North Dakota by county, as this will take areas outside the main cities into account and offer a broader idea of salary ranges.
The same survey from the US Census Bureau gives further insight this way, with the average household income calculated for each county.
|County||Average Household Income|
|Golden Valley County||$53,750|
|Grand Forks County||$61,104|
Highest paying jobs in North Dakota
There’s another weighty factor that will influence how much you earn if you live in North Dakota: your job type. Average salaries for various sectors and job roles can vary massively across the state, so it’s absolutely something to consider when looking at salaries by location.
U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has calculated a comprehensive list of annual salaries by occupation area, which you can also find below.
|Occupation Area||Annual Salary|
|Judges, Magistrate Judges, and Magistrates||$147,780|
|All Other Physicians||$132,660|
|Architectural and Engineering Managers||$131,770|
|Training and Development Managers||$119,920|
|Computer and Information Systems Managers||$117,130|
|Septic Tank Servicers and Sewer Pipe Cleaners||$113,860|
|Natural Sciences Managers||$113,630|
|All Other Managers||$110,550|
|Industrial Production Managers||$105,430|
Frequently asked questions about salaries in North Dakota
What is the average salary in North Dakota by age?
Alongside location and occupation, salaries in North Dakota are also dependent on age, since more senior workers will be paid more. Then, when they retire, their income will dip again as they will rely on pensions and other forms of set income. You can also check out the complete guide to retirement in North Dakota here.
The Census Bureau data finds that householders under 25 have a median household income of $43,769; householders aged 25 to 44 years old have a median income of $71,689; those aged 45 to 64 years old have a median income of $76,350; and those 65 and older have a median income of $51,836.
What is a ‘good’ salary in North Dakota?
The median income in North Dakota is $64,577. Defining ‘good’ relies on all sorts of variable factors and these should be taken into account. For example, $100,000 is a far higher salary than the state average and may be considered a good salary by many.
What is the average salary in North Dakota by hour?
If Americans work an average of 1,801 hours per year—at 37.5 hours a week—then the average hourly salary in North Dakota is $35.81.
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Charlie Barton is a writer at Unbiased. He has been writing about personal finance and investing since 2017, with extensive knowledge of platforms and products. Charlie has a first-class degree from the London School of Economics.