The Average Californian

Who is the average Californian?

California is the most populated state in the United States, housing nearly 39 million people. If it were a country, it would be 35th in world in terms of population. With a strongly multicultural population, including one of the highest percentages of Latino residents in the United States, California is an ever-changing community. With that in mind, we decided to find out who, exactly, is the average Californian? What is their name? Where do they live? What are their kids’ ages? How much do they drink?

We combined our own data collected from various finder.com surveys of thousands of Americans with data from the US Census Bureau, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Bureau of Economic Analysis and several other sources to build a personal profile of the average Californian. Meet Jennifer…

Av-Cal3

The Basics

  1. Jennifer is 35 years old, Latino, overweight and a democrat.
  2. She has two kids: a girl named Jessica or Emily and a boy named Daniel, aged 9 and 18. She will spend $371 on them over the next school holidays.
  3. Jennifer lives in Koreatown, Los Angeles and drives 28 minutes to work.
  4. She has a credit card debt of $5,376 (which would take 10.5 years to pay off if only the minimum payment is made each month). She uses it most during sales, and her most common unplanned purchase is eating out.
  5. She plans to spend $176 on her Mom this Mother’s Day, but only $120 on her Dad this Father’s Day.
  6. She completed high school, but does not have a college degree.
  7. She owns a home worth $412,700, paying $1,851 per month in mortgage repayments, which she has been living in for less than 11 years.
  8. Jennifer works 41.3 hours a week in retail, to earn $1,012 per week, or $52,651 annually. This is nearly $5,000 more than the national average of $47,669.
  9. She is Catholic.
  10. Jennifer has $11,760 of student debt.
  11. She spent $82 on her partner last Valentine’s Day.
  12. She consumes 4.8 alcoholic drinks a week, or 250 drinks a year, and estimates her own spending as $757 annually (which is probably an underestimate)
  13. Jennifer has spent $295 on spontaneous purchases while under the influence of alcohol. She is most likely to buy shoes or clothes.
  14. She considers herself to be in a financially healthy situation.
  15. On her last vacation, Jennifer accumulated $1,910 in credit card debt, and planned a budget before Christmas last year, buying 43% of her gifts online.

Methodology

This study is meant for illustrative purposes only. In most cases, figures used were based on population averages, however in some situations this was not possible. In these cases, the most popular or populated item was used. An example of this includes Koreatown being the most populated neighbourhood in the most populated city in California.

Sources

Sources correspond to numbered points above.

  1. Age calculated using United States Census data (2011). Name based on the most popular baby name in California at year of birth from Social Security Online. Racial category sourced from Pew Research. Weight sourced from the Kaiser Family Foundation.
  2. Age calculated using United States Census data (2011). Name based on the most popular baby name in California at year of birth from Social Security Online.
  3. Koreatown is the most populated neighbourhood in the most populated city in California, sourced via the LA Times Data Desk. Commute time sourced from Census Reporter.
  4. Credit card debt sourced from TransUnion. Credit card use data sourced from a finder.com survey of 5,826 Americans commissioned in April 2016.
  5. Data sourced from a finder.com survey of 5,826 Americans commissioned in April 2016.
  6. Sourced from United States Census data via Census Reporter.
  7. Loan data sourced from United States Census data via Census Reporter. Repayments based on average interest rate in California sourced from Zillow.
  8. Sourced from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
  9. Data sourced from Pew Research.
  10. Sourced from the Institute for College Access and Success and considers the average debt and the percentage of the population with debt.
  11. Data sourced from a finder.com survey of 3,622 Americans commissioned in January 2016
  12. Data sourced from a finder.com survey of 3,622 Americans commissioned in January 2016.
  13. Data sourced from a finder.com survey of 3,622 Americans commissioned in January 2016.
  14. Data sourced from a finder.com survey of 3,622 Americans commissioned in January 2016.
  15. Data sourced from a finder.com survey of 3,918 Americans commissioned in November 2015.
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