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According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of . of it is land and sqmi|sqkm|0}} of it (1.37%) is water.
As of the [[census of 2000, there were 31,705 people, 12,099 households, and 7,743 families residing in the city. The population density was 8,832.1/mi² (3,409.9/km²). There were 14,325 housing units at an average density of 3,990.5/mi²(1,540.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 67.74% African American or Black (a large part from the Caribbean), 23.96% White (21.2% were Non-Hispanic White,) 1.03% Asian, 0.12% Native American, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 1.90% from other races, and 5.19% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.54% of the population.
There were 12,099 households out of which 32.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 36.7% were married couples living together, 22.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.0% were non-families. 30.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.59 and the average family size was 3.25.
In the city the population was spread out with 27.7% under the age of 18, 8.7% from 18 to 24, 26.9% from 25 to 44, 18.9% from 45 to 64, and 17.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 81.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 75.2 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $26,932, and the median income for a family was $32,641. Males had a median income of $26,087 versus $20,434 for females. The per capita income for the city was $14,039. About 19.9% of families and 22.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 32.9% of those under age 18 and 16.9% of those age 65 or over.
As of 2000, 71.97% of city residents spoke English as their first language, while 14.48% spoke French Creole, 6.66% spoke Spanish, 4.11% were French speakers, and 0.92% of the population spoke Yiddish.
Lauderdale Lakes has a high percentage of West Indian-born population, who are not considered as African-American. In 2000, there were 10,078 people, or 36.3% of the city's population, who were born in the West Indies. Over half of those, 5,312 people, reported Jamaica as their place of birth, accounting for 16.75% of the city's population. Another 3,543 people, 11.17% of the city's population, were born in Haiti.
As of 2000, Lauderdale Lakes was the second most Jamaican-populated area in the US, with 18.60% of the population (the neighborhood of Blue Hills, Connecticut was the only US area that had a higher concentration of Jamaicans, with 23.90% total.) It also had the fifth highest percentage of Haitian residents, with 15.70% of the population.