Affluent Dallas suburb leads list of lavish holiday spending budgets in U.S.
As the most wonderful time of the year approaches, holiday shopping budgets are in the spotlight, and a study from WalletHub lists Flower Mound as one of the top cities where Santa doesn't need a whole lot of help.
According to the personal finance website, the average holiday budget in Flower Mound is $3,531 per person, the third highest in the nation.
The town's 2021 population of 77,243 (per the U.S. Census) boasts a median income $139,703 and earlier this year was named by Ventured.com as the richest city in Texas.
In spite of an increase over last year's gift list totals, Flower Mound dropped to the third spot after being ranked No. 1 last year with a budget of $3,427. Newton, Massachusetts (budget $4,233) and Palo Alto, California (budget $3,920) edged out the Texas city this year.
Flower Mound was the only Texas city in the top 10, but there's plenty of holiday cheer to be found in the report, and not just for Flower Mound Santa fans.
Each year, WalletHub calculates the maximum holiday budget for over 550 U.S. cities "to help consumers avoid post-holiday regret," the website says. The study factors in income, age of the population, and other financial indicators such as debt-to-income ratio, monthly-income-to monthly-expenses ratio and savings-to-monthly-expenses ratio.
Despite nationwide focus on inflation strains, holiday spending is expected to be healthy, and higher than last year.
"The seeming social upheaval in recent times may lead households to spend more in an attempt to take some control of the environment which they can control," says Robert Wright, University of Illinois, Springfield professor emeritus who was among five experts consulted for advice about holiday shopping.
This could be good news if your Christmas wishes are on local shopping lists. Eight other North Texas cities landed in this year's top 100 heftiest holiday budgets:
- Allen, No. 17 , $2,670
- Frisco, No. 37, $2,150
- McKinney, No. 45, $2,070
- Plano, No. 50, $1,999
- Carrollton, No. 55, $1,837
- Richardson, No. 58, $1,823
- North Richland Hills, No. 81, $1,658
- Lewisville, No. 90, $1,630
For comparison, the website provided an average consumer profile for Dallas:
Average Consumer Profile of Dallas:
- Monthly Income: $4,833
- Monthly Expenses: $3,755
- Savings: $12,846
- Age: 33.7
- Monthly Income-to-Monthly Expenses Ratio: 1.29
- Savings-to-Monthly Expenses Ratio: 3.42
This landed Dallas at No. 401 out of 558 cities with an average holiday budge of $845, while Fort Worth landed at No. 318 with a budget of $986.
Elsewhere in Texas, spending in the Austin area won't be ho-hum with the Capitol City's budget of $1,705 ranked at No. 78. One Austin suburb, Cedar Park (budget $2,855) ranked No. 14.
Santa's bag could be a mixed bag in the Houston area with four suburbs in the top 100, but the urban center falling behind:
- Sugar Land, No. 15, $2,793
- League City, No. 20, $2,541
- Pearland, No. 36, $2,172
- The Woodlands, No. 71, $1,733
- Houston, No. 366, $890
Things don't look too jolly for San Antonio, ranked at No. 431 with an average budget of $803 or Pharr, which was the lowest ranked city in Texas.
At No. 553 with a budget of $487, the Rio Grande Valley city came in just a few spots ahead of last place Hartford, CT with a budget of only $211.