Report: Affordable Rental Housing Out of Reach for Millions
A recent report issued by the National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) says there is no state in the nation where a minimum-wage worker can afford a modest two-bedroom apartment. The annual report, titled “Out of Reach: The High Cost of Housing,” found that in order to afford a modest two-bedroom unit in the U.S., renters need to earn a wage of $21.21 per hour, or more than 2.9 times higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour.
In its annual report on the gap between renters’ wages and the cost of rental housing, NLIHC finds that a renter earning the federal minimum wage would need to work 94.5 hours per week on average to afford a one-bedroom rental unit at fair market rent, and 117 hours per week (three full-time jobs) to afford a two-bedroom.
The report finds that the high and increasing cost of rental housing, along with stagnating wages, has resulted in more than 11.2 million severely cost-burdened renter households, meaning households who spend more than half of their income on housing. The report also finds that more than 20 million renter households live in “housing poverty,” meaning they are unable to pay for all of their other basic needs like food, transportation, and medical care after paying their rent.