Bay Area residents are older, richer and smarter 

If you’re an average person in San Francisco, you are approximately 38 years old, have a college degree, your household makes about $70,000 a year and you spend about 29 minutes per day getting to work.

Chances are good that you were born in another country, and you are more likely to have never been married than you are to be currently married.

On the eve of announcing the first results of the 2010 census, the U.S. Census Bureau has released the 2009 American Community Survey, a nationwide survey issued each year. Though the survey is not as comprehensive as the once-a-decade census, it attempts to cast a wide enough net to understand trends in communities across the country.

In the Bay Area, the data describes a picture of a wealthier, older, more-educated populace than Californians at large.

All nine Bay Area counties have a median age greater than California’s median age of 34.6. The oldest county by far is Marin, where the median age is 43.7 — more than four years older than the runners-up, Napa and Sonoma, tied at 39.3. The youngest county is Santa Clara, at 35.5.

Every Bay Area county also has a higher median household income than that of California — $60,392 — and a much higher income than households in the nation at large. Marin’s median household income is $87,728, while neighboring Sonoma has the lowest median household income in the Bay Area at $63,848.

Some 41.9 percent of residents in San Mateo County work in a different county — making them among the most likely workers in California to work outside their community. It is likely that most commute north to San Francisco or south to Santa Clara, both job-heavy counties whose residents are much more likely to stay where they are. In Santa Clara County, only 13.2 percent travel out of the county for work, and in San Francisco, 23.8 percent do so.

In all three of those counties, more than one-third of the populace was born outside of the United States — about twice the proportion of Sonoma and Marin counties’ populations, and nearly three times the proportion of the nation’s populace, just 12.4 percent of whom are foreign-born.

kworth@sfexaminer.com

Single and baby-less: Life in The City — for most of us


First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in the baby carriage.

Except if you are in San Francisco.

San Franciscans are much more likely to have never been married than they are to currently be married. No other county in the Bay Area can claim such an unmarriageable populace.

San Franciscan women also have far fewer babies than their counterparts in the surrounding eight counties. About 40 of every 1,000 San Francisco women reported having had a baby in the last 12 months. Elsewhere in California, 57 of every 1,000 reported having a baby in the last year. Solano appears to be the most-fertile county in the Bay Area, with a whopping 70 women out of a thousand having been baby-happy in the last year.

In San Francisco, just 37 percent of the populace 15 and older reported being currently married — compared to 48.1 percent of the population that had never been married. Those figures were basically the inverse of every other county in the Bay Area, including in nearby Marin County. In that county, about 51.1 percent of the population is currently married — and just 29.1 percent have never touched the stuff.

As one might expect, San Franciscans are also much less likely to be divorced than their neighbors across the Golden Gate Bridge. Just 8 percent of San Franciscans claimed to be divorced, compared to 13.4 percent of Marin residents. — Katie Worth

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Katie Worth

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