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June 8, 2018

National Low Income Housing Coalition’s Out of Reach 2017 Report Released

The Virginia Housing Alliance and the National Low Income Housing Coalition jointly released the Out of Reach 2017 report, which provides the housing wage for all states, counties, and metropolitan areas in the country. Each year, the data in Out of Reach informs housing policy makers and advocates at the national, state, and local levels. It also provides the average wages of renters, the number of hours minimum wage earners must work to afford rent, and the cost of rental homes across the country.

The report highlights the gap between what renters earn and what it costs to afford rent at fair market value. According to Out of Reach 2017, Virginia remains the most expensive state for renters in the Southeast and the 10th most expensive state in the nation.  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. In Fairfax County, the annual salary needed to afford a two-bedroom apartment at the Fair Market Rent (FMR) was $69,840– with the rent averaging $1,746.  A minimum wage earner would have to work four full-time jobs to afford a two-bedroom unit at the FMR in Fairfax County.

Out of Reach 2017 is available at: http://nlihc.org/sites/default/files/oor/OOR_2017.pdf