The Simple Test To Find Out If You’re A Gentrifier

Photographed by Nina Westervelt.
Most of us who have wondered if our neighborhoods have become gentrified need only count the number of local shops that have been replaced with Starbucks, gluten-free bakeries, and designer baby clothing boutiques. If you want to get technical about it, though, here's your chance. The team at Slate has produced a calculator which gauges your gentrifier status. Simply plug in your annual income and location (according to your nearest metropolitan area) and you'll find out just how much you are to blame for the local laundromat being converted into a building full of condos. The telltale information is how your 'hood's median income compares with the metropolitan area's median income, as neighborhoods ripe for gentrification report significantly lower incomes. If that's the case for your neighborhood and your personal income also happens to be higher than your city's median income, you've just identified yourself as a gentrifier. The calculator was created with input from Ingrid Gould Ellen, a professor of public policy and urban planning at New York University. She explained that areas that tend to become gentrified report incomes that are in "the bottom half or quarter of the income distribution of a metropolitan area." When incomes within that neighborhood increase more sharply than those of the greater city, gentrification is afoot. Click here to check your own socioeconomic status.

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