A “rent-is-too-damn-high” report last week determined that a family needs to earn $119,000 a year if it wants to afford a market-rate, two-bedroom apartment in D.C.
This week, a new report aims to further illustrate how hard it is for some workers to afford housing here. If a full-time employee working 40 hours a week wants to afford a market-rate apartment, he or she would have to earn $31.21 per hour, according to the report from the National Low Income Housing Coalition.
That’s a lot higher than the city’s current minimum wage of $10.50 per hour.
An affordable monthly rent for a full-time minimum-wage worker would be $540. And someone earning $10.50 per hour would have to work 103 hours a week to afford a one-bedroom apartment at the current market rate, according to the report.
The “Out of Reach 2016” report, which DCist first spotted, follows the U.S. Housing and Urban Development agency’s guidelines that a person should not spend more than 30 percent of his or her income on rent each month. It used the federal agency’s calculations that the fair-market rent for a two-bedroom apartment in D.C. is $1,623, and $1,402 for a one-bedroom apartment.
(Note: This rent is far lower than the one listed in last week’s SmartAsset report, which said that a two-bedroom apartment runs $2,783 per month. That’s because SmartAsset culled its data from apartment listings, while the fair-market rent looks at the average rents of all apartments, regardless of whether they’re on the market.)
The report crunched similar numbers in states and cities throughout the country and found that low-income households are facing a severe housing shortage.
“We face an alarming and increasing gap between the housing needs of our nation’s lowest income households and what is affordable and available to them,” said Diane Yentel, president and chief executive of the National Low Income Housing Coalition.