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Wage Needed to Rent 2 Bedroom Unit in Each State

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posted on May, 29 2015 @ 04:41 PM
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According to this article it looks like the most affordable place to rent a 2 bedroom unit by your lonesome is Arkansas. In my home state a wage of $19.89 is needed. Measured in full time employment of course.

Link to Article & Map

I'm not sure how they came up with their numbers. They obviously have a liberal bias, however there is a huge amount of truth in this statement:




Poverty, inflation, and gov't benefits are calculated as if renters spend 30% of their income on housing. Increasingly, that number is a fantasy.


It's no secret the Government manipulates numbers to make the state of the country appear better than it is. I would also bet when they're calculating this magical "30%" number that they don't even deduct federal and state tax from people's incomes.

This "Out of Reach" organization claims you would need a wage of 19.89 in my home state of Colorado to afford a two bedroom unit. I checked their math and it would equal about 35% of the income before taxes and 41% after federal taxes at 19.89 per hour if the average for a 2 bedroom is $1200 in said state.

The sad thing is the reality is very few make that kind of money and cannot afford even a single bedroom apartment by themselves. Especially since so many companies have cut their full time positions down to part time.

The question becomes should there be a substantial raise in minimum wage? If people work full time should they have a right to a "living wage"?

The libertarian in me says the Government is the root of this problem and more regulation will not help. However the bleeding heart liberal part of me says if people are willing to work then they should be able to afford food, water and shelter and the ability to keep themselves healthy.

What say you ATS?




posted on May, 29 2015 @ 04:43 PM
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Usually a single/studio is going to run you more per month than getting a roommate and splitting the rent.

So yay, everyone gets to have roommates!

Lets not forget predatory scumlords...a lot of low income people can't afford to take time off to deal with small claims court.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 04:50 PM
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originally posted by: MystikMushroom
Usually a single/studio is going to run you more per month than getting a roommate and splitting the rent.

So yay, everyone gets to have roommates!

Lets not forget predatory scumlords...a lot of low income people can't afford to take time off to deal with small claims court.


Or also, in many markets it would be cheaper to buy a house or condo/apartment than rent one, but the banks won't lend without 20% cash down now. Advantage: slumlords and banks



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 04:51 PM
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2 bedroom is a luxury. Why did they not do this study based on more practical, realistic terms?



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 04:51 PM
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Where I live in NY.. you would be LUCKY to find a 2-bedroom apartment for under $2000 a month.

My county (Suffolk) is literally one of, if not THEE most expensive counties in the country. And its pretty much all property/school taxes. I currently pay very close to $10,000 a year in property/school taxes, and its only gonna go up. Even IF you have a good job, you are buried with property/school tax, then the power company gets you, as they have been running up their rates by 5-10%+ every year.

Which is now forcing me to consider moving out of state once my kid graduates high school.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 04:57 PM
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Great source and biased analysis.


Seems to me it's Private Equity firms that are manipulating rates for private gain.

How statistics, such as those referenced, are derived is a whole different subject.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:03 PM
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An apartment renter normally requires a salary at least 40x the monthly rent. It was an old rule of thumb by landlords that 30% of your salary should be spent on rent. If your rent is 500 dollars/pound a month, then you need a salary of at least 20000 dollars/pounds. What landlords actually charge depends on the ratio between the number of housing units up for rent, and the number of tenants seeking a home. If the ratio goes about 97%, then the landlords could charge what they liked, forcing people to double up and flat share. But property developers would then start new developments. The start and end of an economic boom could easily change this ratio.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:06 PM
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Are the averaging across the whole state or merely looking at the major markets? Also, thanks to the housing crash there are a lot of people renting and not as many rental units, so the pressure on rental is exerted on rising rents - supply/demand. Not to mention you have all the new energy rules and regulations that have made your utilities and other expenses more expensive for landlords and management companies. Those have also contributed to the rising costs of housing.

Basically, you can't get credit to buy, so the housing market is crashed with more space than buyers thanks to the new banking regulatory controls. A lot of places were also burned bad with bad loans, so they're not keen to repeat the experience.

You also have more employees than employers making it a market that favors the employers and with the immigration issues the way they are that ain't changin' anytime soon. And without some loosening somewhere, no one can get a foothold in the economy to get started very easily thanks to all kinds of issues with the aforementioned credit crunch not least among them. So, lack of jobs to pay that wage.

And then the imbalance between renters and rental units.

They can tell you all you want the economy has recovered, is recovering, but issues like this one should show anyone how much of a lie it really is.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:09 PM
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originally posted by: MystikMushroom
Lets not forget predatory scumlords...a lot of low income people can't afford to take time off to deal with small claims court.


I know someone who pays abou 1025 for a 2 bedroom house. Although a good deal, the landlord hardly pays attention to the needs of the house and yard. I.E. a pile of dead branches from 2 winters ago just sitting on the side of the house, and a dead garbage disposal. Yay slum lords!



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:12 PM
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a reply to: OhOkYeah

From what I read it seems they measure by the two bedroom unit because that's what the government does. In my states case it's not much cheaper to go with studio or single bedroom. Which is why so many people rent two bedrooms and split rent.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:12 PM
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Where I'm at the houses are selling just fine, and the values have been steady. My place has actually increased in value a little bit over the past 2-3 years.

I could rent my place out right now (based on what other people with the exact condo I have are charging) for $1200-1500 a month.

More and more younger people are graduating college, entering the workforce and finding that they can't buy homes. The 20% down thing is really keeping a lot of people from buying, and forcing a lot of people into renting.

Doesn't the military still provide 0% down loans for homes?
edit on 29-5-2015 by MystikMushroom because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:14 PM
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St Louis MO was once very affordable but Clinton allowed people from Bosnia to immigrate to the US and 20k came to St Louis and the government gave each family a $850 voucher to use for rent, this caused the rents there to double almost overnight.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:15 PM
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originally posted by: FyreByrd
Great source and biased analysis.


Seems to me it's Private Equity firms that are manipulating rates for private gain.

How statistics, such as those referenced, are derived is a whole different subject.



Is any source unbiased these days? If you read my post I checked the math for Colorado and it ended up being about 41% of income after taxes. Their analysis and mine are biased but the math speaks for itself. That much in housing costs plus whatever loans and other bills you have to pay kill the pocketbook. It's unlikely that anyone making 41k a year does not have any student loan debt.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:17 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

Great post.

Sinple supply and demand economics shows you the real state.

Lower wages for same jobs = more supply



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:18 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko

Exactly, if you're fortunate enough to have enough to put 10 to 20 percent down for a house then your payments would probably end up being less, plus you build equity. But rent is sucking people dry, that combined with the new part time economy buying a house is just unrealistic for most people.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:42 PM
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I live in Chemung County, a little north of the western PA border. Currently I make about $1600 a month, paid every two weeks, after taxes. I share a home that was converted into a duplex, each side having 2 bedrooms. I rent with a room mate. Rent is $700 a month utilities included, so $350 a person. I really lucked out with this place however and the fact that I work side by side with my room mate. We have a fairly large backyard in the middle of the city even with a black topped patio in the back corner of the yard, perfect for working on my car. There is no lease, it's month to month.

Downside to this home is it's in shambles. I spent many hours cleaning the back yard from all the glass and trash the previous WHOLE home owners left. We don't have a "landlord" but a company that purchases tons of homes, you can even rent to own. Look them up, Cornerstone Homes. There is only one water heater and one furnace, and the thermostat is in the neighboring apartment. Luckily the neighbors are cool, but his lady smokes fiendishly and the smoke finds it's way through the furnace system into our apartment.

This is the 4th apartment I've rented in this city. The first landlord was rich, and could care less about the apartment. Took him 3 months after the initial request to fix the leaking roof that destroyed our furniture, he's even a contractor for a primary job!

The 2nd apartment was owned by a lady who also owns a paper copy business. They were really professional and handled complaints very quickly. Very lenient when money got short.

It's a hit and miss really. I'm sure it's difficult maintaining a property when you rent out to scumbags, but when you get good people in to your home you should take care of them. My current landlord (company) said I could renovate and they would reimburse everything, which so far they have done. Gets me outside, and I'm learning home maintenance preparing myself for a future home.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 05:48 PM
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I too live in Colorado. I'm self employed. I have made more this year that I have in previous years, but am struggling more than I ever have. I don't have any debt either! And I had a fair amount a few years ago. My living expenses have nearly doubled and I live really lean.
I was listening to a commercial on the radio this morning. The Fed Ex distribution center in Aurora is hiring. "A competitive wage of $11.00 per hour" the commercial said. HAHAHAHAHA!
What grown adult can live comfortably off of $11.00 per hour after taxes in Denver right now?!
Even if they manage to bring home a solid $400 a week. $1600 a month. Maybe they have a roommate at the average of $1200 for a 2 bedroom apartment. They are left with $1000 for travel expenses, insurances, utilities, and food.
It CAN be done. I did it. But that sure wasn't living. I was eating $1 Totinos pizzas and more hot pockets and ramen than I care to remember.

And honestly, I was apartment hunting about 6 months ago in town and couldn't find a two bedroom under $1400. And I was looking everywhere. My rent at that time was freaking $1675 for a two bedroom! And it sure wasn't in the nice luxury places they are putting up all over

I'm a native and am growing increasingly disgusted by how expensive it is to live here. We don't even have a beach lol.

My 2 cents.



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 06:03 PM
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think maybe it depends on where you live in the states..
where I live, one person could live quite nicely with a $21.00/hour job,
if one could find one!!
now if we are talking about the bigger cities instead of out in the countryside, ya it might be accurate...



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 06:18 PM
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What we are being told our reality should be is not the reality we live in. Sure, there are outliers, but not enough to make up for the fact that the earning gap is not a gap but a near bottomless chasm.

It may take 20-30-60 years...but this system of kazoos and headless chickens cant carry the world economy much further.


edit on 29-5-2015 by the owlbear because: (no reason given)

edit on 29-5-2015 by the owlbear because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 29 2015 @ 09:58 PM
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The inflation doesn't help.

Sure, I know. The Fed says there isn't any, or at least no enough to be a problem, but what they also don't tell you is that they don't factor in food and fuel into those numbers. If you have really been paying attention to your food costs the way we do, then you know there has been a lot of inflation in food alone. $100/week used to occasionally buy us a treat of crab legs or sushi grade tuna if we planned well or there was a sale ... no more. We can't even stretch it to buy a nice steak now. If we want that, we have to factor it in as an extra expense. Butter is awful too. There was time when the imported Irish butter was selling out because 8oz of it was cheaper than a pound of the store brand. And I won't start on produce.

It would help is the Fed would stop printing money to pay for its bills which just devalues our own dollars that we all have to work to earn. What you used to think was a dollar is now only cents on that dollar.



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