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Out of Reach 2017 – National Low Income Housing Coalition

Housing is Out of Reach

Out of Reach documents the gap between renters’ wages and the cost of rental housing.  The report’s Housing Wage is the hourly wage a full-time worker must earn to afford a modest rental home without spending more than 30% of his or her income on housing costs.  It is based on HUD’s Fair Market Rent (FMR), which is an estimate of what a family moving today can expect to pay for a modest rental home in the area.

Millions of Americans struggle to find affordable rents.
In order to afford a modest, two-bedroom rental home in the U.S., renters need to earn a wage of $21.21 per hour.  The Housing Wage for a two-bedroom apartment is $13.96 higher than the federal minimum wage of $7.25, and $4.83 higher than the average hourly wage of $16.38 earned by renters nationwide.

Find Data for Your Locality

Use the interactive map on nlihc.org/oor to access state and local data.  Various items are included with for each state.

Using Alabama as an example, you will find:

  • Data
    • Amount of hours you have to work at minimum wage to afford a modest 1-bedroom home at FMR
    • Affordable Rent for Low Income Households at minimum wage, at 30% of area median income, at average renter wag
    • Fair Market Rent for 1-bedroom and 2-bedroom apartments
    • Compare jurisdictions using drop down menus
  • Connect to Network – Alabama


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