These Are The 10 Poorest Cities In Utah For 2019


We used science and data to determine which places in Utah are basically dead broke.

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Editor’s Note: This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Don’t freak out we updated this article for 2019. This is our fourth time ranking the poorest places in Utah.

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Utah brings to mind images of Salt Lake City, beautiful landscapes, and some of the best people you’ll find in the good ole US of A.

However, like all states, Utah has certain places that are going on hard times. These places have an above average percent of people that are living in poverty, out of work, or not making as much as they should be.

With all the talk about income inequality going on around the country, we thought it prudent to take a look at the places in each state that are struggling to make it even as the economy continues to improve. So we set our sites on bringing attention to the places in Utah that could use a helping hand.

To do so, we analyzed the newest Census data from the American Community Survey for the 85 places in Utah with more than 5,000 people.

We were left with this set of the ten poorest places in the Beehive State for 2019:

  1. Ephraim (Photos)
  2. Cedar City (Photos)
  3. Vernal (Photos)
  4. Ogden (Photos)
  5. South Salt Lake (Photos)
  6. Tremonton (Photos)
  7. Price (Photos)
  8. Provo (Photos)
  9. Brigham City (Photos)
  10. Hurricane (Photos)

Again, this isn’t a commentary on the people that live there or the vibrant culture and traditions of these places. Instead, it’s just a look at the facts.

And according to the facts, Ephraim is the poorest place in Utah for 2019.

Rich people not your cup of tea? Feel free to check out the richest places in Utah or the most dangerous.

For more on how we calculated the top ten, and for more information about these places, read on.

If you’re looking for something more national, check out the poorest states in America or the poorest cities in America.

For more Utah reading, check out:

How We Determined The Poorest Places In Utah for 2019

The first thing that comes to most people’s minds when they think about determining the poorest places is to simply the poverty rate. That is, the number of people living below a federally established level of income for a household of a certain size.

However, we don’t think that one statistic wholly encompasses what it means to be one of the “poorest places”. So we looked at this set of criteria from the newly released 2013-2017 American Community Survey:

  • Poverty Level
  • Median Household Income adjusted for the cost of living
  • Unemployment Rate

The “median household income adjusted for the cost of living” attempts to gauge how expensive it is to live in a place and how that impacts the quality of life. For example, a town might have fewer people living below the official poverty line, but the cost of living is so high they’d still feel poor.

The unemployment rate tries to capture the prospects for improvement in the city or town. If more people are employed, the brighter the future looks and vice versa.

After we collected the data for all 85 places with more than 5,000 people in Utah, we ranked each place from 1 to 85 for each of the criteria, with 1 being the poorest.

We then averaged all the rankings for a place into a “Poor Score” with the place having the lowest overall Poor Score, Ephraim, crowned the “Poorest Place In Utah For 2019”.

You can learn more about the top ten below or skip to the end to see the rankings for all 85 places.

Ephraim, UT

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 6,858
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
Median Income: $39,626 (2nd lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 8.1% (4th highest)
Poverty Rate: 28.0% (1st highest)
More on Ephraim:  Data | Photos

Ephraim, unfortunately, ranks as the poorest place in Utah thanks to combination of low pay and and a lack of jobs.

The city of 6,858 people averages the 2nd lowest median household income in Utah and the 1st highest poverty rate. At the very least, the cost of living ranks in the bottom 15% of place in the state, so things like housing are relatively affordable.

Cedar City, UT

Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 30,232
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
Median Income: $42,216 (4th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 6.4% (11th highest)
Poverty Rate: 25.6% (2nd highest)
More on Cedar City:  Data | Photos

The second poorest city in Utah is Cedar City.

The city ranks as having the 2nd highest incidence of poverty and 4th lowest median household income. However, the unemployment rate ‘only’ ranks as the 11th highest in the Beehive State.

Vernal, UT

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 10,650
Rank Last Year: 17 (Up 14)
Median Income: $47,150 (9th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 8.6% (2nd highest)
Poverty Rate: 21.4% (6th highest)
More on Vernal:  Data | Photos

Placing as the third poorest city, Vernal’s median income ranks as the 9th lowest.

And that’s a sign that there’s a relatively substantial jump in the quality of the economy from second to third place on our list. The poverty rate is 21.4% and ranks near the bottom of places in the state.

But what makes up for the relatively low incomes of the city is its low cost of living. The income you do make here goes further than in most parts of the Beehive State.

Ogden, UT

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 85,497
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 1)
Median Income: $43,361 (6th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 6.4% (11th highest)
Poverty Rate: 21.4% (6th highest)
More on Ogden:  Data | Photos

Ogden ranks as the fourth poorest place in Utah.

The town ranks as having the 6th lowest median household income and the 6th highest incidence of poverty in the state.

That being said, there’s still a ton of cultural diversity in the city as it hosts many events throughout the year.

South Salt Lake, UT

Overall SnackAbility

5
/10

Population: 24,722
Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 5)
Median Income: $41,457 (3rd lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 5.2% (22nd highest)
Poverty Rate: 22.5% (5th highest)
More on South Salt Lake:  Data | Photos

The fifth poorest city in Utah is South Salt Lake.

The city ranks as having the 3rd lowest median income in the state. However, an extremely low cost of living prevents a good number of folks from living in poverty as the poverty rate only ranks as the 5th highest in Utah.

Still not the best news for South Salt Lake.

Tremonton, UT

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 8,242
Rank Last Year: 5 (Down 1)
Median Income: $51,354 (13th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 6.7% (9th highest)
Poverty Rate: 16.8% (12th highest)
More on Tremonton:  Data | Photos

Tremonton ranks as the sixth poorest place in the Beehive State.

It ranks as having the 12th highest incidence of poverty and the 9th highest unemployment rate.

Price, UT

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

6
/10

Population: 8,337
Rank Last Year: 3 (Down 4)
Median Income: $45,388 (8th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 5.3% (18th highest)
Poverty Rate: 20.8% (8th highest)
More on Price:  Data | Photos

Price places as the seventh poorest city in Utah.

The city of over 8,337 ranks as having the 8th highest incidence of poverty in the state. However, it has a very low cost of living which helps to pay the bills each month.

Provo, UT

Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 116,199
Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 1)
Median Income: $44,312 (7th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 5.0% (26th highest)
Poverty Rate: 25.4% (4th highest)
More on Provo:  Data | Photos

Provo ranks as the eighth poorest city in Utah.

The big issue for the town is the unemployment rate which ranks as the 26th highest in the state.

Brigham City, UT

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

8
/10

Population: 18,736
Rank Last Year: 21 (Up 12)
Median Income: $49,760 (11th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 6.8% (8th highest)
Poverty Rate: 11.7% (24th highest)
More on Brigham City:  Data | Photos

Brigham City couldn’t stay out of the top ten poorest places in Utah; it ranks number 9.

While the median income is the 11th lowest, there are a substantial number of people that live below the poverty line. Overall, Brigham City ranks as having the 24th most people living in poverty of all the places we analyzed in Utah.

Hurricane, UT

Overall SnackAbility

7
/10

Population: 15,676
Rank Last Year: 13 (Up 3)
Median Income: $49,961 (12th lowest)
Unemployment Rate: 5.6% (14th highest)
Poverty Rate: 11.9% (22nd highest)
More on Hurricane:  Data | Photos

And rounding out the top ten poorest cities in Utah is Hurricane.

The city of 15,676 people ranks in the bottom 20% for both median income and poverty rate in the Beehive State.

There You Have It – The Poorest Places In Utah For 2019

Like we said earlier, when we set out to identify the poorest places in Utah, we weren’t sure what we’d encounter, but it ended up being some of the best places to live in Utah.

When you look at the data, the cities and places mentioned above meet the criteria for being at the very bottom of the income ladder for everyone that lives there.

If you’re curious enough, here are the richest cities in Utah, according to data:

    Richest: South Jordan
    2nd Richest: Hooper
    3rd Richest: Farmington

For more Utah reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Poorest Places To Live In Utah

Rank City Population Poverty Rate
1 Ephraim 6,858 28.0%
2 Cedar City 30,232 25.6%
3 Vernal 10,650 21.4%
4 Ogden 85,497 21.4%
5 South Salt Lake 24,722 22.5%
6 Tremonton 8,242 16.8%
7 Price 8,337 20.8%
8 Provo 116,199 25.4%
9 Brigham City 18,736 11.7%
10 Hurricane 15,676 11.9%
11 Richfield 7,589 17.2%
12 Logan 49,957 25.5%
13 Salt Lake City 194,188 17.8%
14 Sunset 5,207 11.6%
15 Roosevelt 6,771 13.1%
16 Enoch 6,331 12.9%
17 Moab 5,232 7.0%
18 Washington Terrace 9,122 11.6%
19 St. George 79,995 15.5%
20 Orem 94,420 15.0%
21 West Valley City 135,546 13.8%
22 Midvale 32,249 17.0%
23 Tooele 33,236 7.7%
24 Pleasant Grove 37,439 11.9%
25 Washington 24,231 14.0%
26 Clearfield 30,683 11.3%
27 Hyrum 7,926 13.1%
28 Riverdale 8,685 11.4%
29 Grantsville 10,170 7.7%
30 Roy 38,013 10.9%
31 Payson 19,647 10.1%
32 North Logan 10,140 13.7%
33 Ivins 7,908 11.5%
34 American Fork 28,507 9.6%
35 Murray 49,038 10.9%
36 Taylorsville 60,377 11.2%
37 Nephi 5,631 11.7%
38 Santa Clara 6,835 5.3%
39 Smithfield 10,832 4.9%
40 West Jordan 111,937 7.5%
41 Santaquin 10,740 8.3%
42 Heber 14,414 11.4%
43 West Haven 12,109 8.4%
44 Layton 73,963 7.4%
45 Springville 32,319 7.0%
46 Fruit Heights 5,992 9.2%
47 South Ogden 16,918 7.1%
48 Salem 7,504 6.5%
49 Cedar Hills 10,266 6.8%
50 Spanish Fork 38,171 6.8%
51 North Salt Lake 19,413 6.8%
52 Providence 7,173 8.1%
53 Bountiful 43,568 6.4%
54 Lindon 10,761 6.4%
55 Pleasant View 9,375 6.5%
56 Herriman 31,970 2.8%
57 Eagle Mountain 27,773 8.0%
58 Bluffdale 10,869 3.0%
59 Woods Cross 11,152 7.6%
60 Harrisville 6,182 1.2%
61 South Weber 6,921 2.5%
62 Saratoga Springs 25,671 1.9%
63 Nibley 6,438 5.6%
64 Park City 8,167 14.4%
65 Clinton 21,353 4.2%
66 Sandy 94,556 5.6%
67 Farr West 6,671 5.2%
68 Cottonwood Heights 34,214 5.2%
69 Mapleton 9,255 3.8%
70 West Bountiful 5,504 6.9%
71 North Ogden 18,525 4.3%
72 Alpine 10,197 5.3%
73 Draper 47,043 5.3%
74 Kaysville 30,328 3.9%
75 Centerville 17,013 4.7%
76 Holladay 30,793 4.7%
77 Lehi 58,351 5.8%
78 Highland 17,952 3.3%
79 Riverton 41,997 4.2%
80 Plain City 6,343 2.6%
81 Syracuse 27,444 3.8%
82 West Point 10,258 3.7%
83 Farmington 22,616 2.8%
84 Hooper 8,236 2.3%
85 South Jordan 65,523 2.9%

 Poorest 

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