Do You Make Enough to Live Where You Work?

What if the people who keep a city running -- including urban planners -- can't afford to live there? An updated database highlights the gap between incomes and housing costs in hundreds of U.S. cities.
August 16, 2013, 8am PDT | Anna Bergren Miller | @abergrenmiller
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That “if” is already a “when” in many metropolitan areas, according to data in the Center for Housing Policy’s Paycheck to Paycheck database. In San Francisco, for instance, the cost of a two-bedroom apartment (about $1,795 a month) already exceeds what urban planners and other professionals can pay. If you’re a housekeeper, a bank teller, or a groundskeeper, forget about even a one-bedroom apartment in the metro area.

“This ultimately means that people needed to work in downtown restaurants and hospitals, or well-to-do neighborhoods, often must live at the far reaches of a metro area,” Emily Badger writes. “Or it means they’re spending way more on their housing than a family budget can really afford.”

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Published on Thursday, August 15, 2013 in The Atlantic Cities
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