If You Make Less Than $28 an Hour, You Can't Afford Median Rent In Dallas, Says Zillow

Surviving on minimum wage, even working full-time, is basically impossible. That's the jumping off point for a map released by the real estate website Zillow on Wednesday, that relates the median rental price in 15,099 cities to the hourly wage one would need to afford it.

The conclusions drawn don't hold up to much scrutiny. There's no concession made to the fact that bigger rental units are going to be, generally, more expensive and more likely to be occupied by multiple wage earners. There's no mention that the 30 percent rule for how much one should spend on housing is not the standby that it used to be, especially in big cities. The data provided is interesting on its own, though.

We can glean from it that the October 2014 median rent in DFW was $1,423. According to the site, that's 82.6 cents per square foot, which makes the median Dallas rental 1,722 square feet. The same time last year, the median per square foot cost of a Dallas rental was 78.6 cents. In November 2010, the earliest month for which Zillow has data available, the price per square foot 72.2 cents. Over the same time period, Dallas' median household incomes have decreased, from $58,173 in 2010 to $57,389 in 2013.

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