The suburb of Fairway in northeast Johnson County is the richest small town in Kansas, according to an analysis by a financial news and opinion website.
But is it really? Doubtful.
Fairway ranked highest according to the methodology used by the 24/7 Wall St. website, which looked at communities with populations between 1,000 and 25,000 people for the period from 2012 to 2016.
But Mission Hills, a small suburb also in Johnson County, is generally recognized as even richer. It is usually cited as the wealthiest city in the Kansas City metro area and among the top in the Midwest.
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The methodology is what led to Fairway's ranking by the 24/7 Wall St. website, which listed the richest small town in every state. It looked at data from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey.
It found that Fairway's median household income was $102,821, compared to a statewide median of $53,571. Fairway had an estimated population of nearly 4,000 in 2016, and more than half of all households earned six-figure incomes, according to the website.
It said 23.7 percent of the community's households earned more than $200,000, compared to 4 percent for the state. The median home value was $335,800 versus $135,300 for the state.
According to 24/7 Wall St.'s methodology, the analysts said they took steps to control for potential data errors that can arise in low population areas. So they did not consider towns where the margin of error for the data was greater than 10 percent for median income or population.
That ruled out Mission Hills, with an estimated 2016 population of 3,600, where the estimated household income was $246,528 but the margin of error was 10.5 percent.
The definition of a small town also ruled out the wealthy Johnson County suburb of Leawood, which had an estimated 2016 population of nearly 34,000 and an estimated median household income of $147,722.
The richest small town in Missouri, according to 24/7 Wall St., was Town and Country, near St. Louis.