Household income

Published

1. Main facts and figures

  • 45% of households in the UK had a weekly income of below £600 (before tax) on average, in the 3 years to March 2020

  • 29% of households had a weekly income of £1,000 or more

  • 6% of households had a weekly income of £2,000 or more

  • Black households were most likely out of all ethnic groups to have a weekly income under £600

  • households in the Indian ethnic group were the most likely to have a weekly income of both £1,000 or more, and £2,000 or more

2. Things you need to know

What the data measures

The data measures the weekly income of households in the UK before tax. It includes the total income of everyone who lives in the household.

The data only includes private households.

Percentages are rounded to the nearest whole number, so some totals may not add up to 100%.

Not included in the data

Data based on fewer than 100 responses is not shown. Percentages of less than 0.5% before rounding have been suppressed.

The data does not include:

  • people who live in communal accommodation (for example, care homes)
  • people with no fixed address (for example, homeless people)
  • households where not all residents completed the survey

The ethnic groups used in the data

The data uses the ethnic categories from the 2011 Census.

Data is aggregated for the Black, Mixed and Other ethnic groups, which means estimates are shown for these groups as a whole. Data is shown separately for White British people and all other White people (the ‘White Other’ ethnic group).

Some households contain people from different ethnic backgrounds. Each household’s ethnicity is based on the head of the household, which is usually the person with the highest income. The data does not account for people of different ethnic backgrounds who live in the same household.

Methodology

Read the detailed methodology document.

The data is an average for the 3 years from April 2017 to March 2020. This is to make sure there are enough households to be able to make reliable generalisations. You can read more about combining multiple years of data and some of the issues involved.

The figures on this page are based on survey data. Find out more about:

3. By ethnicity

Percentage of households in average weekly income bands, by ethnicity
Ethnicity Up to £200 £200-£399 £400-£599 £600-£799 £800-£999 £1,000-£1,199 £1,200-£1,399 £1,400-£1,599 £1,600-£1,799 £1,800-£1,999 £2,000 or above
All 6 20 19 14 11 8 6 4 3 2 6
Bangladeshi 4 20 20 23 11 8 5 5 2 1 2
Chinese 9 19 19 14 5 9 5 5 4 2 9
Indian 5 12 13 11 12 10 7 5 6 4 14
Pakistani 7 16 24 19 11 6 6 4 1 1 4
Asian other 7 10 18 19 11 8 7 7 4 3 5
Black 8 22 25 14 9 7 4 4 3 1 3
Mixed 9 18 16 14 10 12 4 4 2 2 8
White British 7 21 19 14 11 8 6 4 3 2 6
White other 5 14 17 17 13 9 6 4 3 3 8
Other 8 21 18 14 8 7 5 4 3 2 10

Download table data for ‘By ethnicity’ (CSV) Source data for ‘By ethnicity’ (CSV)

Summary of Household income By ethnicity Summary

The data shows that in the 3 years to March 2020, on average:

  • 45% of households in the UK had a weekly income of below £600 before tax

  • 23% of households had a weekly income of £1,000 to £1,999, and 6% had a weekly income of £2,000 or more

  • Black households (55%) were most likely out of all ethnic groups to have a weekly income of less than £600

  • Indian households (46%) were most likely to have a weekly income of £1,000 or more, which is more than twice the percentage of Pakistani (22%), Bangladeshi (23%) and Black (22%) households

  • Indian households (14%) were also most likely to have a weekly income of £2,000 or more and Bangladeshi households were least likely (2%)

4. Data sources

Source

Type of data

Survey data

Type of statistic

National Statistics

Publisher

Department for Work and Pensions

Note on corrections or updates

The figures for the share of income in the download file before the year ending March 2015 may not match the DWP’s published figures. This is because the way of adjusting for inflation changed from the Retail Price Index to the Consumer Price Index from the year ending March 2015 onwards.

Before 2019 to 2020, respondents from the Irish Travellers (NI) ethnic group in Northern Ireland were included in the White Other ethnic group. From 2019 to 2020, the reporting of this ethnic group was changed for all years presented to harmonise with published figures for the Family Resources Survey and Households Below Average Income, and the ONS harmonised output guidance. Irish Travellers (NI) ethnic group responses in Northern Ireland are now included in Other ethnic group.

Publication frequency

Yearly

Purpose of data source

The main purpose of the Family Resources Survey (FRS) is to give the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) data to develop, monitor and evaluate social welfare policy.

The survey is also used by other government departments, including for tax and benefit policy modelling by HM Treasury and HM Revenue and Customs. The FRS is also used extensively by academics and research institutes for social and economic research.

5. Download the data

Household income 2021 - Spreadsheet (csv) 196 KB

This file contains the following: measure, time, ethnicity of household, ethnicity_type, geography, value and denominator