Discover the 5 Poorest Neighborhoods in Los Angeles, California

Los Angeles, California, stands as a sprawling metropolis, home to over 10 million individuals. This city boasts a diverse and lively culture, economy, and way of life. Yet, within its borders, exists a city of stark contradictions, where affluence and destitution exist side by side. In Los Angeles, certain neighborhoods thrive with prosperity, while others grapple with poverty.

Here are the five neighborhoods with the lowest household incomes in Los Angeles, as indicated by median income data from multiple sources:


Positioned in South Los Angeles, Watts holds a notable history of civil unrest, exemplified by the Watts riots of 1965 and the Rodney King riots of 1992. This area also contributes culturally and artistically through landmarks like the Watts Towers and the Watts Writers Workshop.

However, Watts remains one of Los Angeles’ most economically disadvantaged regions, with a median household income of just $25,161. With around 40,000 residents, predominantly African American and Latino, Watts grapples with challenges like high unemployment, crime rates, violence, and health concerns.

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Historic South-Central

Located south of downtown and east of the Harbor Freeway, Historic South-Central hosts historical treasures such as the Dunbar Hotel, the Lincoln Theater, and the 28th Street YMCA.

Despite these cultural gems, Historic South-Central stands among the city’s most impoverished and underserved districts, with a median household income of $30,021.

A population of approximately 48,000, mainly Latino and African American, faces obstacles including poverty, gang violence, substance abuse, and environmental risks.

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Found in unincorporated Los Angeles County, south of Florence Avenue and east of Firestone Boulevard, Florence-Firestone packs over 60,000 individuals into less than three square miles. Yet, it also grapples with significant economic difficulties, boasting a median household income of only $31,318.

The majority of its population comprises Latinos, including a substantial immigrant community from Mexico and Central America. Crime, gang activity, homelessness, and pollution are prevalent challenges.

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Boyle Heights

Situated in East Los Angeles, east of the Los Angeles River and south of the Santa Ana Freeway, Boyle Heights boasts a rich cultural heritage tied to various ethnic groups such as Jewish, Japanese, Russian, Armenian, and Mexican.

Nevertheless, Boyle Heights contends with notable impoverishment and overcrowding, as indicated by a median household income of merely $33,235. Its population of roughly 92,000, predominantly Latino (94%), faces challenges stemming from substandard housing and financial constraints.


Nestled in South Los Angeles County, south of Slauson Avenue and west of Vermont Avenue, Vermont-Slauson is part of the Vermont Square community plan area, including neighborhoods like Vermont Knolls and Vermont Vista.

Yet, Vermont-Slauson stands as one of Los Angeles County’s most financially challenged and underdeveloped zones, boasting a median household income of $33,996.

The area, encompassing approximately 29,000 residents, primarily African American (72%) and Latino (25%), grapples with issues like unemployment, limited educational access, healthcare disparities, and public safety concerns.


These five neighborhoods represent the least affluent areas in Los Angeles, as indicated by available data. However, it’s crucial to recognize that poverty extends beyond income figures, encompassing factors like education, healthcare, opportunities, and overall quality of life.

These neighborhoods possess hidden strengths and assets, such as community resilience, cultural diversity, social cohesion, and civic engagement, which may not be fully reflected in their income levels.

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