Uh… is this a joke? Because there’s no way in Hades a CT resident working minimum wage can possibly afford rent without federal assistance.
Huffington Post got their hands on a study that compared hourly and minimum wage salaries to the average rent by state. The study is from the National Low Income Housing Coalition’s annual “Out of Reach” report. Every year, they study how much the average worker needs to make in order to spend 30 percent of their income on housing.
The study focused on the affordability of a “modest” two-bedroom apartment.
First of all, no one can afford rent if they’re being paid $7.75 an hour… AKA the federal minimum wage. Thankfully, Connecticut’s minimum wage got a much-needed boost lately.
But, it still has a long way to go before becoming anything remotely close to a living wage, as explored HERE.
Anyways, for workers making that salary, they’d have to earn double that in order to even afford rent without federal assistance. That also applies to Connecticut. And then some.
So, if you wish to afford a two-bedroom apartment in Connecticut and not lose an arm or a leg to make payments: you need to earn $24.72 an hour. That’s how much one needs to earn an hour to make sure only 30 percent of their income goes to rent.
So, you need to make above $47,500 a year. Raise your hand if you make that much.
In short, effectively no one making minimum wage can afford that. Minimum wage workers making $10.10 an hour make less than $20,000 a year.
Which means: they need federal/state assistance to afford a roof over their head. Or, they can work two or even three jobs, and pull in over 112 hours a week. Which option would you take?
Then again, salaried full-time workers might not make $47,500, either. Which means, we have full time workers in the state who spend more than 30 percent, maybe up to 60 percent, of their salaries on housing.
Unfortunately, rent continues to skyrocket every year while salaries stagnate. Also, the federal minimum wage has actually fallen.
1968, the federal minimum wage was equivalent to $11.42 in today’s money. So, you do the math.
Anyways, it’s way harder to afford rent in Hawaii. You have to make $35.20 an hour to comfortably afford rent.
The easiest state to afford rent is Arkansas: who only requires workers to make $13.72 an hour.
Either way, if this trend continues, you’re gonna see more people turning to federal and state assistance to keep a roof over their head. We already know rent is out of control in Connecticut. But, if it gets worse, we’ll have to pay for it.
So, what needs to be done to make rent/housing affordable to those who work full-time?