The Washington Post's Wonk Blog yesterday published a county-by-county map of what a worker needs to make to afford a decent one-bedroom apartment.
In Dallas (and Collin, and Denton County) the figure is $13.88 per hour, assuming 40-hour weeks and a full 52 weeks of pay. Annually, that comes out to about $29,000 per year.
That figure is based on the county's "fair market rent," or FMR, a metric calculated each year by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development for determining Section 8 payments. The FMR is designed to reflect a market price for decent, middle-of-the-road housing, the cost of basic utilities included.
In the Dallas area, the FMR for a one-bedroom apartment is $722. For a two-bedroom, it's $913.
How much workers need to make to afford those rents was calculated by the National Low Income Housing Coalition, which assumed that 30 percent of a person's income should go toward housing costs.
Housing in Dallas is slightly more expensive than the state average -- Texas has the 22nd highest housing costs in the country, according to the NLIHC -- but is cheaper than Austin, Houston, and urban areas on either cost.
So says the data. Good luck finding an apartment and utilities for $722 a month.
Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.