VA 12th Highest Housing Wage

The National Low Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) recently released their annual Out of Reach report for 2018. The report illustrates the discrepancy between wages and the cost of rental housing, and how this trend is not improving. Housing costs continue to increase from year to year, and wages are not keeping up. Nationally, the hourly ‘housing’ wage for a 40 hour work week needed to afford a 2-bedroom rental working, is $22.10.  A person earning the federal minimum wage of $7.25 would need to work 122 hours per week to afford a 2-bedroom market rate rental apartment. While some localities have increased their minimum wage, Virginia continues to maintain the federal minimum wage rate of $7.25/hr.

Compared to other states, Virginia has the 12th highest housing wage, down from the 11th spot the past several years.

Below is a break-down of the housing wage for a 2-bedroom rental in Virginia and Northern Virginia. The chart compares housing wage statistics from 2015- 2018. As you can see, individuals earning below $23.69/hour statewide or $34.48/hour in Northern Virginia will have difficulty finding a place to live without becoming cost-burdened by their rent.








VA vs NoVA

VA vs NoVA

VA vs NoVA

VA vs NoVA

Fair Market Rent

$1,097  vs  $1,458

$1,167  vs  $1,623 $1,211  vs  $1,746 $1,232  vs  $1,793

Housing Wage

$21.10  vs  $28.04 $22.44  vs  $31.21 $23.29  vs  $33.58 $23.69  vs  $34.48

Annual Income Needed

$43,878  vs  $53,320 $46,675  vs  $64,920 $48,435  vs  $69,840 $49,276  vs  $71,720

Hrs/week @Min Wage

116  vs  155 124  vs  172 128  vs  185 131  vs  190