Norfolk, VA Facts at a Glance

All Data from ACS 2019 1-year estimates
Population 242,742
Median Household Income $53,093
Adults with a College Degree 62,184*
Median Age 31.1
Median Housing Value $218,000

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, American Community Survey, 2019 1-Year Estimates

*Adults with a College Degree includes those 18-24 with a Bachelor’s degree or higher and those 25 and older with an Associate’s degree or higher

Cost of Living

Companies located in an area with an affordable cost of living are better able to attract and retain skilled, talented employees. The lower cost of living in Norfolk will allow employees’ earnings to stretch farther than they would in many other parts of the country. This allows companies to offer wages that are still competitive due to Norfolk’s lower cost of living while also maintain labor costs that are lower than what they may be if the company were to locate in another part of the country. Living in the Hampton Roads region is cheaper than the national average overall and in terms of groceries, housing, transportation, and health care.

The Cost of Living Index is interpreted as follows. The national average is set as the base of comparison and is thus 100. Any value above 100 indicates the Cost of Living in the selected area is higher, meaning it is more expensive to live there. Any value below 100 indicates the Cost of Living in the selected area is lower, meaning it is cheaper to live there. In the table for the Norfolk, VA MSA Cost of Living, the Composite Index is 95.9, meaning it is less expensive to live in the Norfolk, VA MSA compared to the national average, or, it is 4.1% less expensive to live in the Norfolk, VA MSA compared to the national average.

Norfolk, VA MSA Cost of Living: 2019 Q3 – 2020 Q4 Index
Category Index/National Average = 100.0
Composite Index 95.9
Groceries 96.7
Housing 91.0
Transportation 92.8
Health Care 92.6

Source: The Council for Community and Economic Research, Cost of Living Index, 2019 Q3 – 2020 Q4 Index

The overall Cost of Living in the Norfolk, VA MSA is lower than the Cost of Living in many of its direct competitors, as noted in the accompanying table, making it a very attractive location for businesses.

MSA – Urban Area Noted Cost of Living – Composite Index
Norfolk, VA 95.9
Charlotte, NC 98.0
Charleston, SC 99.5
National Average 100.0
Baltimore, MD 110.4
Philadelphia, PA 111.7
Miami, FL 115.5
Newark, NJ 123.1
Chicago, IL 123.5
Washington, D.C. 160.0
New York City, NY (Manhattan) 245.7

Source: The Council for Community and Economic Research, Cost of Living Index, 2019 Q3 – 2020 Q4 Index

Age

With a population of nearly 243,000, Norfolk is the heart of the Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, VA-NC MSA, the 37th largest MSA (U.S. Census 2019) in the country. With a Median Age of 31.1, Norfolk’s population is young. Nearly a quarter of Norfolk residents are in the 20-29 age group, whereas not even 14% of the United States’ population is in the 20-29 age group. The largest age group in Norfolk is those ages 20-29, followed by those ages 30-39. Over one-quarter of Norfolk’s population are millennials. Additionally, nearly 60% of the population falls into the larger age group of 20-59. This age range encompasses the prime working ages, thus indicating a robust labor force.

Norfolk Residents by Age Group – 2019
Age Number Percent
9 and under 28,422 11.7%
10-19 29,804 12.3%
20-29 58,202 24.0%
30-39 35,728 14.7%
40-49 23,358 9.6%
50-59 25,192 10.4%
60-69 23,780 9.8%
70-79 11,896 4.9%
80+ 6,360 2.6%
Total 242,742 100.0%

Source: American Community Survey, Table S0101: Age and Sex, 2019 1-Year Estimates

Race

Norfolk is a very diverse locality representing individuals of many races. This diversity of race and culture contributes to diversity in businesses.

Norfolk Residents by Race – 2019
 Race Estimated Number or Norfolk Residents Percentage of Norfolk Residents
White 114,295 47.1%
Black or African American 100,025 41.2%
Two or More Races 11,157 4.6%
Asian 8,913 3.7%
Other 7,491 3.1%
American Indian and Alaskan Native 816 0.3%
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 45% 0.0%
Total 242,742 100%

Source: American Community Survey, Table B02001: Race, 2019 1-Year Estimates

Educational Attainment

Norfolk Residents Ages 25 and Over by Educational Attainment – 2019
 Population 25 years and Over Number of Residents Ages 25 and Over Percentage of Residents Ages 25 and Over
Less than High School 17,834 11.7%
High School Diploma 39,397 25.9%
Some College 35,233 23.2%
Associate’s Degree 13,041 8.6%
Bachelor’s Degree 28,822 18.9%
Graduate or Professional Degree 17,838 11.7%
Total 152,165 100.0%

Sources: 1American Community Survey, Table S1501: Educational Attainment, 2019 1-Year Estimates

Household Income

Norfolk Household Income – 2019
Range Value/Percentage
Median $53,093
Average $70,842
Under $25,000 23.0%
$25,000-$49,999 23.6%
$50,000-$74,999 20.0%
$75,000-$99,999 13.0%
$100,000+ 20.3%

Source: American Community Survey, Table S1901: Income in the Past 12 Months (In 2019 Inflation-Adjusted Dollars), 2019 1-Year Estimates

Housing Units

Norfolk Housing Units – 2019
Category Number Percentage
Total Housing Units 98,476
Occupied housing units 88,387
Owner-occupied 38,901 44.0%
Renter-occupied 49,486 56.0%

Median Housing Value

Norfolk has a variety of affordable housing options with a median housing value in Norfolk, VA, that is lower than that of the MSA and the country.

Median Housing Value – 2019
 Norfolk MSA United States
$218,000 $255,900 $240,500

Source: American Community Survey, Table DP04: Selected Housing Characteristics, 2019 1-Year Estimates