How Many Hours at Minimum Wage Does a Virginian Need to Work Each Week to Pay Rent?
The answer? One-hundred and eleven. Or, nearly 16 hours every day. At the current minimum wage of $7.25, that’s what it would take for a Virginian to afford a modest 1-bedroom rental home at fair market rent, according to NLIHC’s new “Out of Reach” report for 2018.
If you think these numbers are skewed by Northern Virginia, you’re right. For the Washington-Arlington-
Alexandria HMFA, the wage needed to afford a 1-bedroom unit is $30.02 per hour – over four times the minimum wage! In the Richmond region, that same wage is $17.44; but it’s still well above what most renters are earning.
Rural Virginia is out of reach for many renters, too. In non-metro areas, workers earning minimum wage must work 65 hours each week to afford a 1-bedroom apartment – if they can even find one near their job.
If a quality, affordable home remain so hard to obtain throughout Virginia, what does that say about our ability to build truly inclusive communities?
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