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These Are The 10 Hardest Working Places In New York

New York is always bustling with industry and workers who keep it going, but where do they call home? Our new ranking has the answer.

Laura Allan

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New York is well known for having incredibly industrious cities. People think of big metropolises, overrun with men (and women!) in work clothes carrying briefcases, always making their way through crowded and noisy streets to their ever-important jobs. But the state is also home to farming communities and some small villages, too, where many of the jobs involve working with your hands and back more than a keyboard. So, which places in New York really work the hardest?

We here at Movoto Real Estate decided it was time to put in some real work of our own finding out which locations in New York were always putting in, well, real work. We collected some data, analyzed it, and discovered there are a few places in the empire state that reign supreme. Chief among them is Scarsdale, but it’s got nine other hard-working neighbors in our top 10:

1. Village of Scarsdale
2. City of Rye
3. Village of Dobbs Ferry
4. Village of Rockville Centre
5. Village of Mamaroneck
6. Village of Floral Park
6. Village of Lynbrook
8. City of Peekskill
9. Village of Massapequa Park
10. City of Long Beach

While that may look like a lot of villages, don’t let the size of these places fool you. These folks are the most dedicated and industrious folks you can find. If you and your coworkers are breaking your backs at your nine-to-five job daily, fret not. You still may have scored very high on our top 50 ranking, which you can find at the end of this post.

How exactly did we even make this list, though? Let’s talk for a minute about how we found out which places in NY, besides New York City, never sleep.

How We Took A New Look At New York

Like the people on this list, we’re all about number crunching when we make our Big Deal Lists . As in other cases, like our hardest working mid-sized cities ranking, we first collected a list of the most populated places in New York above the size of 10,000 people. That ended up being 88 places. After that, we collected relevant data on each individual place from the U.S. Census and American Community Survey to compare and analyze. That data examined four different criteria, and go as follows:

  • Adjusted median household income (median household income compared to cost of living, higher being better)
  • Average time spent commuting (higher)
  • Unemployment rate (lower)
  • Average hours worked per week (higher)

Using these numbers, we ranked each location in each category from 1 to 88, with 1 being the best. Using that, we compiled a Big Deal Score out of these different rankings to determine which place took the position of hardest working. It turned out that place was Scarsdale.

Now we know you’re asking, “where’s New York City?” The Big Apple was actually ranked at a middle-of-the-pack 47th. While the adjusted income score was low, and the unemployment rate was high, New Yorkers should be proud to say that the city has the absolute longest average commute time at 44 minutes. At least there’s plenty to see as you creep along the roads.

With that out of the way, let’s get that elbow grease going and get down to the task of discussing what makes these 10 cities a workaholic’s paradise.

1. Scarsdale

Hardest Working Places In New York

Source: Flickr user June Marie

Scarsdale may be a village of only 17,166 people, but it scored highest in not one, but two categories and came out at No. 1 overall. The first of those two categories was hours worked, with the average work week coming out to a total of 43.2 hours. We don’t know about you, but we certainly don’t work that much on average, so hats off to the workers of Scarsdale.

The second category is adjusted income rank, and here’s where things got impressive. The average median household income for this village was $237,135. That’s right, that’s the median household income. Not the top. That means half the residents here make more than that. Well, at least the residents of this village are well compensated for their very long hours.

The village did well in our two other rankings, as well. It had the second-highest commute time at 43 minutes and the unemployment rank was tied with many others for third at 6.2 percent.

2. Rye

Hardest Working Places In New York

Source: Flickr user Doug Kerr

In second place is the city of Rye and its 15,720 residents. Of that population, 93.8 percent are employed and working a whole lot of hours each week; an average of 42.9 hours, to be exact. Combine that with the No. 5 commute time average of 39 minutes, and Rye workers probably feel like they’re always either at work or commuting to and from it. This city’s work is never done.

What might be a rye fact to some is that, despite the huge number of hours worked, the adjusted income ranking for this city only comes in 23rd for that criteria. While $146,069 is nothing at all to scoff at, it pales in comparison to No. 1 Scarsdale. Perhaps a little raise is in order?

3. Dobbs Ferry

Hardest Working Places In New York

Source: Flickr user Phillip Capper

While the 10,875 locals of Dobbs Ferry village might not have as low rankings as our top two places, some of its numbers are still pretty intense.

Workers here are at their jobs for an average of 39 hours per week, which put Dobbs Ferry at the 11th spot for that criterion, and make an average of $100,659 per year which ranked No. 14 for that category. The unemployment here was low at only 6.2 percent, which means that just about everybody has a fairly well paying job. The commute also ranked fairly high at 14th on our list for that ranking.

4. Rockville Centre

Hardest Working Places In New York

Source: Flickr user Jacob Quinn

This village is definitely rockin’ some serious numbers when it’s time to get down to business. Workers are at their jobs for an average of 39.8 hours a week, and are are subjected to an average commute time of 36 minutes, which is ninth on our list for that category. It doesn’t help the commute that 93.6 percent of the 24,023 residents are employed, so the roads and buses are probably packed with people on weekday mornings.

Luckily, the 17th place adjusted income rank helps bail out the hard-working joes of Rockville Centre. The median household income is $104,023, which means all that overtime and extra effort really pays off in the end.

5. Mamaroneck

Hardest Working Places In New York

Source: Flickr User June Marie

Besides having one killer name, Mamaroneck and its 18,929 locals sit at No. 5 on our overall list. This village had the third-highest hours worked with an average of 39.9 per week, and is tied for the third lowest unemployment rate as well.

Now, the adjusted income ranking here really was disappointing. For being the third-highest in hours, you would expect it to rank above places like Dobbs Ferry and Rye. It did not, however, and its median household income is only $86,307. Plus, with all those hours and the long commute time of 34 minutes, workers in Mamaroneck should definitely be asking their bosses what’s up with that.

6. Floral Park

Hardest Working Places In New York

Source: Flickr user Leonard S. Jacobs

The first in a tie for sixth, Floral Park and the 15,863 people who live there are definitely looking pretty rosy. Workers toil away for an average of 39 hours a week and spend an average of 34 minutes on the way to and from their jobs. It’s also great that the unemployment rank is only 6.4 percent, so everyone is all hustle and bustle in this little village.

Workers here make a more respectable median household income of $109,079 per year for their No. 9 ranked average hours worked. Hear that Mamaroneck? That’s what you need to be shooting for next.

6. Lynbrook

Hardest Working Places In New York

Source: Flickr user Neil R

Lynbrook is a little more laid back when it come to hours worked in our top 10, but that’s not saying much. Those employed out of the 19,427 residents of the village (93.6 percent of them) work an average of 38.7 hours a week, which is a more relaxed 16th place for that ranking. The commute, however, is still a big of a nightmare. Workers spend 36.6 minutes on average traveling to and from their places of employment, so that takes a bit off that little bit of extra relaxation time.

The adjusted income rank here is none-too-bad either, and comes in at No. 9 on our list for that category. When asked the usual “working hard or hardly working” quip, these New Yorkers probably brag that it’s been all work, and totally worth it.

8. Peekskill

Hardest Working Places In New York

Source: Flickr user Mike Thomas

While this city isn’t exactly the peak performer in any one category, it shows across the board that the 23,583 people living in Peekskill really know how to work it. Tied at third for highest employment rate, the workers in this place keep chugging away from an average of 38.9 hours per week. They also spent an average of 35 minutes in transit, which ranked 12th for that category and means that, unless they’re sleeping, Peekskillians are probably hard at work.

The median household income here was more than a little lacking though. With a median household income of $57,784, working residents work hard for their money and really don’t get as much as they deserve. Mamaroneck and Peekskill? You guys need to team up on this one.

9. Massapequa Park

Hardest Working Places In New York

Source: Flickr user Mike Thomas

Standing at No. 9 on our overall list, Massapequa Park showed that putting your nose to the grindstone can result in some pretty sweet compensation. Workers in this 17,008 population village were on the job an average of 38.2 hours a day and on the road an average of 34.4 minutes a day. That’s a whole lot of being out and about. With only 6.4 percent of the population being unemployed, that means hardly anyone is just hanging around on weekdays here.

Remember that compensation I mentioned? The village’s adjusted income rank was a very high No. 2 on our list, which means that even though these folks are really working, they’re also raking in the dough. In this case, hard work really does pay off.

10. Long Beach

Hardest Working Places In New York

Source: flickr user The National Guard

Not to be confused with its Californian cousin, this Long Beach is home to some 33,275 folks that know what a hard day’s work is worth. With the second-highest commute time of 43 minutes and an unemployment rate of only 6.4 percent, you can bet that Monday through Friday residents are either at their desks or on their way there. Once at work, they’re there to stay, with a No. 13 ranking in that category of 38.9 average hours per week.

To wrap up our top 10, we have another place that really needs a bit of a bump in its paygrade. For all their hard work, Long Beach locals only make a median household income of $77,673. We imagine there’s a little family of these underappreciated working cities in New York, or at least a trifecta of the overworked and underpaid.

If You Can Make It There, You’ll Make It Anywhere

When it comes to getting stuff done, Scarsdale definitely knew what it was all about. It closed the deal in all the areas we were looking for, and was easily the most impressive as far as median household income goes. While the rest of the top 10 worked hard to keep up on the list, they all fell short of that little village.

Of course, there were some that fell way, way short. There were three cities in particular that sat decisively at the bottom of our list.

Ogdensburg did poorly across the board and came in last, with workers spending a breezy 16 minutes on commute every day and 9.3 percent of the population being unemployed. Binghamton did only slightly better with 7.7 percent of people being unemployed, and an average median household  income of only $30,398.12 for their limited hours. Probably one of the more laughable on the list was third-to-last Plattsburg, whose workers only work for about 33.7 hours per week on average, which brings to question what they do with the rest of their day. So, while there are overachievers, there are definitely underachievers here, too. Well, we guess that means that they can only go “ever upward” from here. Excelsior! (We had to say it just once.)

So there’s the good news for New Yorkers, and the bad news, too. It looks like villages came out over massive cities, showing that smaller places still know how to get the job done best. Think we’re spot on? Think your hometown is harder working? Let us know with a comment below, and try to keep it classy. It’s up to you, New York.

Hardest Working Places in New York


posted on: March 21, 2014
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