costs to live in Jefferson county in 2019

How Much You Need To Make An Hour To Rent In Jefferson County

The National Low Income Housing Coalition recently released its annual report, Out of Reach. See how Jefferson County fared.

By Amber Fisher | Aug 20, 2019 10:08 am ET | Updated Aug 20, 2019 10:17 am ET

The typical household in Colorado must earn $25.33 per hour to afford a modest, two-bedroom apartment at fair market rate, according to the National Low Income Housing Coalition. In the report, “Out of Reach,” Colorado is said to have the 10th highest housing “housing wage” in the country.

According to the recent study, fair market rent for a two-bedroom apartment in Colorado is $1,317.

There are more than 65,000 renters in Jefferson County. To afford a two-bedroom here, a typical household has to earn $29 an hour.

Here’s the breakdown for Jefferson County:

  • Studio: $19.79
  • One-bedroom: $23.15
  • Two-bedroom: $29
  • Three-bedroom: $40.75
  • Four-bedroom: $47.33

The national housing wage is $22.96 for a modest-two bedroom apartment, whereas the estimated average wage for a renter in the United States is only $17.57 per hour.

The five metro areas with the highest two-bedroom housing wages are:

  • Oakland-Fremont, California — $40.88
  • Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, Massachutetes — $42.19
  • Santa Cruz-Watsonville, California — $46.90
  • San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, California — $54.60
  • San Francisco, California — $60.96

California has four of the top five most expensive urban areas, but Hawaii is actually the costliest state to rent a two-bedroom apartment in.

The five most expensive states are:

  • Hawaii: $36.82
  • California: $34.69
  • Massachusetts: $33.81
  • New York: $30.76
  • New Jersey: $28.86

The five least expensive states are:

  • Alabama: $14.92
  • Kentucky: $14.84
  • Mississippi: $14.43
  • West Virginia: $14.27
  • Arkansas: $14.26

“A worker earning the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour must work nearly 127 hours per week (more than 3 full-time jobs) to afford a two-bedroom rental home or 103 hours per week (more than 2.5 full-time jobs) to afford a one-bedroom rental home at the national

average fair market rent,” the study said.

In Jefferson County, a worker earning the minimum wage of $11.10 would have to work 73 hours a week to earn enough to pay for a two-bedroom apartment.

In the report, U.S. Representative Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts, discussed the importance of safe and affordable housing.

“Affordable housing promotes healthy living and provides low-income people a chance at upward mobility,” said Pressley. “Without it, families are destabilized, productivity suffers, and entire communities suffer.”

Pressley added, “For too long, too many people have been left out and left behind when it comes to federal housing policy and it’s time those practices come to an end.”

Interested in renting an apartment of your own? Check out to search for one, two or three bedroom apartments.

Patch reporter Gus Saltonstall contributed to this report.

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