- rom Wall Street Journal
A San Francisco household would need to make $39.65 an hour to afford the market rent for a two-bedroom apartment, according to a new report that highlights a wide gap between stagnant incomes and rising rents in many parts of the country.
Around the country, renter households would need to make $19.35 an hour working full time to afford a two-bedroom unit, which is $4 more than the estimated average wage of U.S. workers, according to the report released Tuesday by the National Low Income Housing Coalition.
Rental affordability has grown as a challenge in recent years due to a number of factors, including increasing demand as more people choose to rent or are forced to because they can’t get mortgages; a relative lack of rental construction in recent years in comparison to past cycles; and stagnant wage growth.
There is no state in the country where someone earning either the state or federal minimum wage can afford a market-rate one-bedroom apartment, according to the report. A minimum wage worker would need to work 86 hours per week to afford a one-bedroom apartment.
The researchers looked at much a family would need to make to keep its rental costs at a reasonable level–30% of its income–to afford rent and utilities on a modest rental unit in a short amount of time, as defined by the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
San Francisco was the most expensive metropolitan area, followed closely by Stamford-Norwalk in Connecticut, where a typical two-bedroom apartment demands that income earners in the household make a combined $37.37 an hour working full-time, according to the report.
The most difficult state in which to afford rent was Hawaii, where a household would need to make $31.61 an hour to afford a two-bedroom rental, meaning you would need to work more than 4 full-time jobs at minimum wage to afford an apartment.
Close behind were Washington, D.C., where households need to earn $28.04 to afford a two-bedroom apartment, and California, where rent demands a household earn $26.65 an hour. In both of those places, households would need to work three minimum-wage jobs to make rent on a two-bedroom home.