The Georgetown Household

Last week GM explored the baby boom in Georgetown, or lack thereof. And this reminded him that he hasn’t run a piece on the overall picture of Georgetown households in quite some time. So here is a 2021 update!

First a caveat: This information comes from the American Community Survey five year estimates. As GM mentioned last week, this dataset does not attempt to create a snapshot at a particular moment, but rather makes an estimate of the respective data series over a five year time frame. So instead of saying, for example, that there are 10,000 people living in a particular area as of January 1st, it rather says that on average over the past five years there were 10,000 people living there. For relatively stable metrics it’s good enough (and all that is available for geographic areas as small as a Census tract).

Georgetown is now made up of four Census tracts, but for this purpose we can exclude two of them. The first is Census tract 2.01, which represents just Georgetown University. Secondly, we can ignore the fact that this year Census tract 1.00 (east Georgetown) was split into two tracts: 1.01 and 1.02. The data here reflects when it was just one tract.

A second caveat is that as GM also discussed last week, this data often comes with huge margins of error. GM will try to identify when that occurs.

That said, here is the data!

Population and Households:

There are approximately 9,597 residents of Georgetown. They live in roughly 4,018 households (i.e. houses or apartments). East Georgetown households have an average of 2.1 residents in them. For west Georgetown this figure is 2.3.

Although sometimes it can feel like Georgetown is a ghost town, about 86% of east Georgetown households are occupied. In west Georgetown its 90%. (Of course, this figure may not capture the number of homes that are occupied only part time).

In east Georgetown the housing units are split roughly evenly between single family homes and apartments. In west Georgetown the split is 63%-37% between single family homes and apartments. Perhaps related to that, in east Georgetown only 57% of households are owner-occupied. In west Georgetown it’s 70%.

The median east Georgetown owner-occupied home is roughly $1.18 million. However, that figure comes with a whopping $217,000 margin of error. For west Georgetown the median number is $1.20 million, with a slightly smaller $154,000 margin of error.

Income and Job:

It’s no surprise that Georgetowners are on the whole well off. The median household income for east Georgetown is $192,000 (plus or minus $26,000). For west Georgetown that’s $205,000 (plus or minus $48,000).

Of course, not everyone is that well off. But it’s hard to know how many. The ACS estimates that nearly 1,000 people in Georgetown live in poverty. This comes with a gigantic margin of error of roughly 500. This would still suggest that at least about 500 people live in poverty. Certainly Georgetown has a homeless population that would be included in this figure, but it’s not likely nearly that high. So a decent number of Georgetown residents are housed but still struggling.

In east Georgetown, about 75% of adult residents are in the workforce, with only 2% currently unemployed. In west Georgetown only 65% of adult residents are in the workforce, with a similar 2% currently unemployed.

In normal times, both sides of Georgetown have an average commute just under 25 minutes. And Georgetowners take a wide variety of ways to get to work. Although lots of Georgetowners drive alone to work, they do not represent the majority of workers. In fact, in west Georgetown more people walk to work (35%) than drove alone (28%). In east Georgetown, more people drive alone (37%) but workers that bike, walk or take transit outnumber them at 42%. (GM should caution that this dataset also has a pretty high margin of error).


Finally, what does the average Georgetown look like?

There’s actually a stark difference in average age between the respective sides of the neighborhood. In east Georgetown the average age is 45, with a pretty small margin of error. For west Georgetown the number is only 27. This likely reflects the higher number of Georgetown university students living in the neighborhood west of Wisconsin versus east.

Not surprisingly, Georgetown is pretty white, although perhaps not as much as you might think. Both sides of Georgetown are 76% white. The margins of error are so high that it is pointless saying how the remaining 14% breaks down between Black, Hispanic and Asian.

A large number of Georgetowners are born abroad. For east Georgetown 22% of residents were foreign born. In west Georgetown that figure is 18%. In both cases Europe is the most common origin, with Asia coming slightly behind. Approximately a quarter of Georgetown households speak a language other than English at home.


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