There is no affordable housing available in Idaho for minimum wage workers who need an apartment at fair market rent, according to a report released by the National Low Income Housing Coalition.
The Washington, D.C.,-based research and advocacy organization determined a worker would have to earn $11 an hour in Idaho to afford a one-bedroom apartment at fair market rent of $572 per month. In Ada County, the worker would have to earn $11.87 an hour for a $617 one-bedroom apartment.
The minimum wage in Idaho is $7.25 per hour. NLIHC determined the average renter in Idaho earns $11.23 per hour. The affordable rent for a minimum wage worker is $377 per month, according to the NLIHC report.
In Idaho in 2014, 29,000 workers across the state earned minimum wage or less. At the minimum wage, a worker would have to work 78 hours per week to afford a two-bedroom apartment, according to the Boise/Ada County Homeless Coalition.
“The actuality is there is no way a person living in Idaho earning minimum wage can afford any housing option that is available to them,” said Peg Richards, president of the Boise/Ada County Homeless Coalition. “It is important to know throughout the state we have a housing problem and it has to be addressed… Many two-earner households can be considered ‘homeless-in-waiting.’”