Who Can Afford Decent Housing?
August 20, 2020
Tennesseans are included in an annual review of affordability based on wages and housing costs and Tennesseans did not fare well.
The National Low Income Housing Coalition reports our neighbors need a minimum of $17.09 per hour or $35,550 annually, in wage to afford a two-bedroom rental apartment. Tennessee Housing Development Agency reported the median income for rental families was $32,090 based on 2018 data.
The annual “Out of Reach” report found here, https://nlihc.org/, compares rents and wages nationally and in every state, county, and metropolitan area in the U.S. Occupations such as administrative support workers, record clerks, material moving workers, building cleaners, home health aides, food preparation workers, retail sales and restaurant servers fall below the “housing” wage. Data specific to Tennessee, including each county, is found here.
A housing unit is deemed “affordable” if the household is paying no more than 30 percent of its income for rent (or mortgage) and utilities.