Rent too damn high: New study finds minimum wage won’t cover rent anywhere in U.S.
An annual report by the National Low Income Housing Coalition was released Wednesday, and the findings were hella depressing.
Turns out, a person who works full time and earns a minimum of $15 per hour in the U.S. can barely afford to pay their rent—and a person earning the federal minimum wage of $7.25 would have to work 2.5 full-time jobs just to keep a roof over their heads.
The report estimated that the majority of renters across the country earn an average of $16.88 per hour, but that isn’t enough. To be able to afford a one-bedroom apartment, a person would need to earn $17.90 per hour and $22.10 an hour for a two-bedroom place, according to CBS News.
If you think that’s expensive, wait until you find out how much it takes in Hawaii. A two-bedroom apartment in Hawaii requires an annual income of $75,000. Whereas in Arkansas, it only takes $29,000 annually.
“The study bases its definition of ‘modest’ rental housing on a weighted average of fair market rent estimates developed annually by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to calculate the agency’s housing assistance to poor people around the country,” as reported by CBS News.
CBS News also points out that the findings revealed there’s an increased demand for rentals, but new construction has trended toward the high-end market.
The National Low Income Housing Coalition’s report features a preface written by Sen. Bernie Sanders. “While the housing market may have recovered for many, we are nonetheless experiencing an affordable housing crisis, especially for very low-income families,” he wrote. “In America today, nearly 11 million families pay more than half of their limited incomes toward rent and utilities. That leaves precious little for other essentials.”