by Abhiram Sajai, Scoop Upworthy - Cloud Tiger Media, February 6, 2024
Man shares his insights into the dark reality of wages failing to keep up with abnormally high rent, pushing people into a circle of poverty.
Wages failing to meet the rising cost of living has become a significant problem that no one can turn a blind eye to. The bare minimum people want these days is to afford basic housing with their hard-earned money, but even that seems challenging. Lucas -- who goes by @LucasBrownEyes on X (previously Twitter) -- shared an elaborate post detailing how the average rent and hourly pay in the US does not compute. The post has become quite popular on the platform, with 781.6K views, 23K likes and over 7K retweets.
>>The median US rent is $1967. Which means the median US hourly pay which would be considered livable (1/3 of rent) should be $35.40 The current US median hourly pay is… $17.02 Society will never be "okay" until this is fixed. It'll always feel like a bad economy because of this
Feb 3, 2024
He provides a hypothetical scenario of an individual being paid $17 an hour. It would mean that they made $34,040 in a year. If one takes into account a one-bedroom space that was rented out at $1496 a month, the total cost in a year would be $17,952. So, the individual would end up paying an astounding 53% of their salary towards rent, leaving very little for expenses and savings.
But as he points out how there were families that only had a single source of income and needed living spaces that had more than one bedroom. He states how the one-third budget rule came about as a solution for single-income households, but that was not relevant anymore. Even before the 1960s, when a large majority of households survived on a single source of income, the rule of thumb was to allocate only one-fourth of the monthly income to housing costs.
Even for an individual to afford a one-bedroom house complying with the one-third rule, they would have to make at least $26.93 an hour. But accounting for taxes would push the average individual to spend 44% of their income on housing.
As he points out,
>> In real life -- median 1 bedroom is about 64% of a median income
Things in the U.S. are becoming more difficult, even for those solidly in the middle class, especially for the younger generation just starting off in life.
But for lower income people, those in the working lower middle class, people are increasingly finding themselves squeezed between a rock and a hard place, as the idiom goes -- between high rent prices and low wages.
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