If Any of These 12 Things Describe You, You’re Officially Upper Middle Class

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Updated April 11, 2024
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Curious about your socioeconomic standing? This is a common concern, particularly for those trying to get ahead financially.

The upper middle class signifies a notable socioeconomic group. It's characterized by financial security, access to advancement opportunities, and a lifestyle distinct from other societal segments.

Here are 12 indicators that you might be part of the upper middle class.

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You have multiple income streams

vinnstock/Adobe money and income statement report

Wealthier people generally have two or more sources of income. These can include rental properties, dividend-paying investments, royalties, and side businesses.

If you strategically develop various revenue streams to make extra money, you’re minimizing dependency on any single source of income and maximizing your overall financial health.

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You don’t worry about the cost of kids

Srdjan/Adobe  woman sitting with newborn baby

One of the most expensive parts of having kids is the cost of child care. The average American spends about 24% of their household income on the cost of child care.

If child care is less than a quarter of your income and you can provide your children with enriching experiences (private tutoring, music lessons, extracurricular activities, etc.), you’ve transitioned from middle to upper middle class.

You max out your retirement accounts

Maksim Shchur/Adobe three eggs with inscriptions

If you’re diligently contributing the maximum allowable amount to your retirement accounts, including catch-up contributions for those aged 50 and older, you’ve entered the upper middle class.

By taking advantage of these additional contributions, you can accelerate the growth of your retirement savings, fortifying your financial security and ensuring a comfortable retirement lifestyle.

Resolve $10,000 or more of your debt

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You invest in different asset classes

wutzkoh/Adobe team calculates summary report

By allocating your resources strategically among investments such as commodities, real estate, stocks, and alternative assets, you can effectively spread risk and capitalize on opportunities for growth across multiple markets.

This prudent approach to asset allocation not only safeguards your wealth against market volatility but can also maximize your returns, ensuring long-term financial prosperity and stability.

You hire professional help with your finances

kerkezz/Adobe financial advisor consulting a client

Understanding the complexities of wealth management, the upper middle class usually seeks the expertise of financial professionals to navigate intricate financial landscapes effectively.

Only about 35% of Americans consult a financial professional. However, consulting with an expert can help increase your finances. If you can pay for a financial professional, consider yourself at least upper middle class.

You have a maid or house cleaners

rh2010/Adobe cleaners washing floor

By outsourcing tasks such as cleaning, cooking, and maintenance, you can free up valuable time to focus on career advancement, personal pursuits, and quality time with family and loved ones.

This delegation not only enhances overall well-being and productivity but also contributes to the local economy by creating job opportunities and supporting domestic service industries.

You take at least a couple of vacations a year

Song_about_summer/Adobe romantic beach getaway holidays for honeymoon couple

Regular vacations are a means of relaxation, cultural enrichment, and family bonding. However, vacations don't come cheap — the average vacation for a family of four costs about $7,936. If you can afford at least two per year, consider yourself upper middle class. 

Whether it's a weekend getaway to a nearby destination or an elaborate international trip, allocating time and resources to explore new places, experience diverse cultures, and create lasting memories with loved ones provides a wealth of experiences.

You own your home

My Ocean studio/Adobe couple moving house

Homeownership serves as a cornerstone of financial stability and wealth accumulation for the upper middle class, offering a place to live and a valuable asset with long-term appreciation potential.

Owning a home nowadays signifies that you’re part of the upper middle class. This investment in real estate provides a sense of security and permanence and serves as a hedge against inflation and a source of equity for future financial endeavors.

You have a robust savings and investment portfolio

Annap/Adobe glasses and pen on financial portfolio with graphs

It’s smart to have a significant savings and investment portfolio. If you have a lot of extra money each month to save or invest to grow your net worth, consider yourself upper middle class.

By strategically allocating resources across various asset classes, you can mitigate risk, enhance portfolio performance, and position yourself for continued wealth accumulation and financial success.

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With no credit check to apply and no monthly fees to worry about, you can earn nearly passive income on purchases you’re making anyway — up to an extra $360 a year!

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You prioritize education

pololia/Adobe little student girl studying at school

Investing in education goes beyond funding private schools or college tuition for the upper middle class — it encompasses a lifelong commitment to learning, skill development, and intellectual enrichment.

Whether pursuing advanced degrees, attending professional development seminars, or investing in continuing education courses, prioritizing personal growth and knowledge acquisition signifies you've entered the upper middle class.

You dine out regularly

carlesmiro/Adobe friends at a dinner party

If you can regularly indulge in fine dining at upscale restaurants, casual outings with friends, or cultural and culinary experiences, you've probably reached the upper middle class.

This frequent dining habit reflects an affluent lifestyle, appreciation for culinary arts, and commitment to enjoying life's amenities to the fullest.

You have a high level of financial literacy

Prostock-studio/Adobe putting coin into piggy bank

Whether it's analyzing investment opportunities, optimizing tax strategies, or planning for retirement, staying informed and engaged in financial matters to achieve long-term objectives signifies the upper middle class.

This commitment to financial literacy can boost your wealth and foster a sense of control, independence, and security over your financial future.

Bottom line

Unwind/Adobe upper middle class neighborhood

Analyze your spending habits and lifestyle to see if they align with your financial goals. Do you want to achieve the financial security and comfort often associated with the upper middle class?

This is your chance to assess your priorities and aspirations. Remember, you can always work towards greater financial fitness and improve your situation.

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Author Details

Adam Palasciano Adam Palasciano is a personal finance-obsessed and money-savvy individual who loves to hash out content on all things saving money. He specializes in writing millennial-friendly personal finance content, covering topics ranging from trending financial news, debt, credit cards, cryptocurrency, and more.

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