News & Media

The State Of North Carolina Releases County Tier Designations – Iredell County Lands in The Top Ten

Beginning in 2007, the North Carolina Department of Commerce annually ranks the state’s 100 counties based on economic well-being.  Utilizing a three-level system, the state assigns each county a Tier which they then use to determine a variety of state funding opportunities to assist economic development.  The current statewide county tier map and designation can be found here.

County Tiers are calculated using four factors:

  • Average unemployment rate.
  • Median household income.
  • Percentage growth in population.
  • Adjusted property tax base per capita.

As a Tier 3 county, Iredell County has moved into the top ten, leaping from a ranking of 89 out of 100 counties in 2023 to 92 in 2024.  While Iredell County has enjoyed significant wage increases, rising from $47,842 in 2018 to $64,433 in 2023, the average wage declined slightly to $63,674 in 2024.  This places the county slightly below the State of North Carolina’s average wage of $65,409 in 2024.  Iredell County now boasts the 6th highest wage behind Durham at $90,727, Mecklenburg at $84,797, Wake with $74,866, Orange with $66,979, and Forsyth at $64,038.

Additionally, Iredell County has moved up in the rankings to the sixth fastest growing county in the state in terms of population with a growth rate of 7.63%.

Included is the memo regarding the state’s methodology for the rankings and list of all 100 counties, designation, and wages 2024 North Carolina Development Tier Designations as well as North Carolina’s County Average Private Sector Wages.