What is a Murrayite?Jan 16, 2023 07:35PM ● By Shaun Delliskave
According to Censusreporter.org, the median age for Murrayites is 37, mostly white with just over half being female. (Graphic courtesy of censusreporter.org)
By Shaun Delliskave | [email protected]
What do you call someone from Murray? There is no official designation of what to title a Murray resident, but some suggestions have included Murrayians, Murrayers, or Murrayans. However, Murrayite appears most frequently in local publications and was first referenced to a denizen by the American Eagle newspaper in 1897.
After the U.S. Census Bureau posted its 2020 census data on Murray, it answered the question of who a Murrayite is. According to its data, a Murrayite is most likely a white female high school graduate between 18 and 65 who owns a home.
For perhaps the first time, Murray’s population actually decreased. According to census data estimates (www.census.gov/quickfacts/murraycityutah), Murray’s population went down 2%: 49,729 from 50,743 people in 2021. Although there are no conclusions as to why there was a decrease, the 2020 census data was problematic since it was conducted during a pandemic, and the number of census respondents was not typical.
Yet there have been no calls of alarm from the city. Murray has been going through a building boom of higher-density housing, and the deficit of 1,014 people is likely temporary. Murray has grown 9.1% since 2000.
A report from the Gardner Policy Institute at the University of Utah states, “The southwest, south-central and central areas of the county contain the tracts with the highest amounts of population growth, mainly located in South Jordan, Herriman and Bluffdale….The tracts with the highest percentage growth rates were more scattered. A few South Jordan and Herriman tracts are among these, but tracts in Midvale, Salt Lake City, and Murray also demonstrate high rates of population growth.”
Age and Gender
While nearly proportional, females have the edge over males, 52% to 48%.
As far as age groups, twentysomethings are the largest, at 17%. Murray has a sizable offering of apartments and more affordable housing options, attracting younger adults. Thirtysomethings comprise the next largest age group, at 16%; and teenagers make up the third largest group, at 13%.
When you average Murray’s ages together, 37 is the median age for a Murrayite. This is slightly higher than Salt Lake County (33%) and 10% older than Utah’s median age of 31.1.
Murray’s population is younger than the United States as a whole as the national average of 38.1 years. An estimated 17.7% of Murray’s population is 65 years and over, compared to 16.9% of the U.S. population.
Utah’s 18th largest city (down four spots since the last census) is decidedly White: 85.8% of city residents listed their race as White. Murray’s next largest race category is “Two or more” races (5.1%), followed by Asian (3.7%) and Black (1.6%).
One in 10 Murrayites is Hispanic or Latino. Hispanic can be of a variety of racial backgrounds. The census clarified that the number of Murrayites identifying as White alone and not Hispanic or Latino is 79.3%.
According to 24/7 Wall St. (www.247wallst.com/city/murray-utah-population-and-demographics/), a financial news and opinion company, “Nationally, some 61.1% of Americans identify as White, 12.3% as Black or African American, 0.7% as American Indian or Alaska Native, 5.4% as Asian, 0.2% as Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander, 17.8% as Hispanic or Latino, and 2.6% as some other race or combination of races.”
An estimated 91% of Murray residents are native-born, meaning they were born in the United States, Puerto Rico, a U.S. island area, or abroad to a U.S. citizen. Of the 8% foreign-born population, 42.9% have become naturalized U.S. citizens.
“Some of the most commonly reported ancestries in Murray include English, German, European, Irish, and American. Measured by location quotient—comparing the city share to the national share—some of the most highly concentrated ancestries in the city are Sudanese, Afghan, and Iraqi,” 24/7 Wall St. reports.
Census data reflects up to 10 of the most common responses given by residents for the share of the population for which the Census Bureau has published classifications. As these are self-reported, some respondents report a broader ancestry than others.
By far, at 88%, English is the primary language in Murray. The second most spoken language in Murray is Spanish, with 5% being the primary tongue; this is lower than Salt Lake County’s average of 12% and Utah’s at 10%.
Information conglomerate firm BestPlaces (www.bestplaces.net/people/city/utah/murray) reports that 75.4% of the people in Murray are religious. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints dominates the town (61.1%), with Catholics comprising 9% and nondenominational Christians at 1%.
Uniquely, Murray is less religious than Salt Lake City Metro, which is 76.3%, and Utah at 82.3%.
Buying a home is the biggest single purchase most Murrayites make during their lives, which 65% of the residents have done. Per Realtor.com, “The median listing home price in Murray, UT, was $499.5K in Oct. 2022, trending up 8.6% year-over-year.”
Finding a home in Murray can be difficult. Per the census, 84% of Murrayites have stayed in their home for at least a year, which translates to fewer houses on the market.
“The average rent for an apartment in Murray is $1,497,” RentCafe reported. “The average size for a Murray, UT, apartment is 868 square feet, but this number varies greatly depending on unit type, with cheap and luxury alternatives for houses and apartments alike.”
Murray currently has 20% more renter-occupied units than Salt Lake County and 1.3 times more than the State of Utah’s average.
Half of all Murrayites are married, which is consistent with Salt Lake County but lower than Utah’s 57% overall average.
Roughly, Murray has 14,570 households with nearly three people per home. The U.S. Census Bureau defines a household as all the people who occupy a single housing unit, regardless of their relationship to one another.
Of all households, 61% are comprised of married couples. Murray has 1.4 times more nonfamily households than Salt Lake County and Utah as a whole. Much of this can be attributed to younger renter-occupied housing where roommates are common. Female householders are 13%, and male householders are 6% respectively.
American Community Survey’s Census Reporter (www.censusreporter.org/) stated in 2020 that the median household income for Murray was $65,397. Per capita, Murrayites made $32,798 in income. Also, 5.7% of Murrayites live below the poverty line, which is about two-thirds of the rate in Salt Lake County (8.6%), and about three-fifths of the rate in Utah (9.1%).
Just over 11.1% of Murrayites don’t have health insurance.
Murray mirrors county and state average for residents having a high school diploma (95%), and roughly the same for having a bachelor’s degree or higher (36%).
On average, a Murrayite’s commute to work takes about 19.7 minutes, with 74% opting to drive and 4% taking public transit. In addition, 10% worked at home. Also, 94% of Murrayites have a computer, and 88% have broadband internet services.
If a candidate were to run for office in Murray, the more centrist they are, the better their chance of success. BestPlaces Liberal/Conservative Index places Murray at center-left. Murrayites are not as liberal as Salt Lake City or County residents, but they are not nearly as conservative as Utahns overall.
In the last 20 years, Murrayites split the presidential vote. In 2000, 2004, and 2012 the Republican candidate received Murray’s support; in 2008, 2016, and 2020, it backed the Democratic candidate.
In the last four years, according to the Federal Election Commission, in Murray (2018-21), there were 8,598 contributions totaling $1,038,493 to the Democratic Party and liberal campaigns, averaging $121 per contribution. In the same time frame, there were 2,276 contributions totaling $1,192,477 to the Republican Party and conservative movements, averaging $524 per contribution.
Murray’s demographics can shift dramatically as large multi-use developments come online. Nearly 1,000 new units will be available in 2023 thus bringing in more younger and diverse residents. The next census will take place in 2030.
According to recent voting in national elections and campaign contributions, Murrayites tend to be center-left on the political spectrum. (Graphic courtesy of BestPlaces.net)
While one in 10 Murrayites identified themselves as Hispanic or Latino, most of the self-reported ancestry reflected European backgrounds. (Graphic courtesy of 24/7 Wall St.)