Here's How Many Hours You Need to Work to Pay Rent in Every State

There isn’t any state in the country where a minimum wage worker can afford rent for a one-bedroom apartment working 40 hours a week.

The “Out of Reach” study by the National Low-Income Housing Coalition (NLIHC) compared the minimum wage across the United States with the average Fair Market Rent (40th percentile of gross rents for standard rental units) for a one-bedroom apartment. The NLIHC found that just to afford a basic apartment, a minimum wage worker would have to put in anywhere from 44 hours (Puerto Rico) to 124 hours (Hawaii) to pay rent for the most basic housing arrangements.

To put that in perspective, there are 168 hours in a week, meaning a minimum wage worker working 7 days a week in Hawaii would have roughly 6 hours each day for eating, sleeping, caring for family, and leisurely activities — essentially having no time for anything other than working and sleeping. And the money made to pay rent doesn’t include money needed to pay for heat, air conditioning, internet, electricity, transportation, grocery, or phone bills.

According to the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) calculations, Fair Market Rent in 2016 ranges anywhere from $637/month in Kanawha County, West Virginia at the low end to $1,814/month in San Francisco County, California at the high end.

The NLIHC concluded that minimum wage should be $16.35/hour to afford a one-bedroom apartment at average Fair Market Rent, and $20.30/hour for a two-bedroom apartment. This is a significant increase from the 2015 numbers of $15.50/hour and $19.35/hour, respectively. However, in cities with higher-than-average rent prices, like San Francisco, the number jumps dramatically. To afford a basic one-bedroom apartment in the city of San Francisco at Fair Market Rent, a tenant would have to make at least $29.40/hour, and $36.03/hour to afford a two-bedroom apartment.

HUD defines a fair rental price as a tenant not paying more than 30 percent of their monthly income on rent, and classifies those who are doing so as “rent-burdened.” However, in all 50 states, and including Puerto Rico and Washington, DC, minimum wage workers are rent-burdened. Even in Washington, DC, which has the nation’s highest minimum wage at $11.50/hour, a minimum wage earner would have to put in 103 hours of work each week to afford a one-bedroom apartment.

Even though Washington, DC recently passed a law raising the city’s minimum wage to $15/hour, Fair Market Rent for a one-bedroom apartment in DC is $1,402/month, and $1,623/month for a two-bedroom apartment. The $15/hour minimum wage won’t kick in until 2020. In the meantime, the MIT Living Wage Calculator estimates that a single parent living in Washington, DC would need to be making at least $30.90/hour to meet basic expenses.

In 14 states, minimum wage workers have to clock at least 79 hours or more to afford a one-bedroom apartment. In 30 others, at least 61 to 78 hours of work per week is necessary to pay rent on a basic apartment. See where your state ranks via the map below:


EMPLOYMENT OPP: HMIS Data + Systems Mgr (Baltimore City, MD)

This position is responsible for oversight of data and systems administration of the Data and Systems Unit within the Homeless Services Program division of the Mayor’s Office of Human Services (MOHS). This position reports to the Director, MOHS-Homeless Services Program.

Responsibilities of the position include but are not limited to:

•Provide leadership and supports planning of a system-wide coordinated response to homelessness in Baltimore City using the Homeless Management Information System (HMIS). This includes but is not limited to: identifying, connecting and implementing the primary stages of the response system using the HMIS; ensuring the coordinated access system is fully integrated and functioning in the HMIS.

•Supervise data analysis and data reporting staff to support HMIS operations with the primary goal of informing and improving homeless services outcomes in Baltimore City.

•Responsible for oversight of the HMIS work plan, outreach coordination and coordinated access.

•Oversee complex analytical, management and planning functions, assessing HMIS alternatives, leading system and program evaluation activities, presenting data in relation to Baltimore’s plan to make homelessness rare and brief.

•Oversight of the budget, financial and grants management for the Data and Systems Unit within the Homeless Services Program division.

•Write and administer the HMIS project grant, ensuring appropriate budget spending and program compliance with federal regulations and fulfilling grant reporting requirements.

•Oversee and manage the collection, analysis and presentation of data and statistics produced from the HMIS for reporting to federal, state, local and private concerns; and ensuring data quality by implementing strategies for improvement.

•Lead and facilitate the HMIS Governance Committee to meet federal requirements and support the needs of the Baltimore City Continuum of Care (CoC).

•Perform other related duties as assigned.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

•Knowledge of administrative practices and methods, including but not limited to knowledge of HMIS, homelessness programs and related issues.

•Knowledge of methods and procedures for the collection or organization, interpretation and presentation of information.

•Knowledge of management practices and methods.

•Knowledge of the basic principles of accounting, budgeting, fiscal controls and statistics.

•Ability to adapt and apply the concepts and techniques of administrative analysis to the needs of specific projects.

•Ability to identify problem areas and recommend appropriate solutions based on logical consideration of alternatives.

•Ability to interpret and apply a variety of laws, rules, regulations, standards and procedures.

•Ability to prepare and present reports or recommendations clearly and concisely.

•Ability to compile financial and operational data; to analyze charts and reports and statistical and budgetary statements.

•Ability to plan, organize and direct the work of others.

•Ability to research and write complex narrative and statistical reports, with experience in grant writing and management.

•Ability to coordinate the activities of various organizational units.

•Excellent verbal and written communication skills.

•Must be a self-starter, with sound judgment and a high level of professionalism; team player with ability to prioritize multiple tasks. Work must be timely and precise.


•A Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Public Administration, Management or related field from an accredited college or university and eight (8) years of experience in professional –level administrative, operations, or technical work. Previous work experience in these and in related homeless, social or health services field may be required.

Equivalencies: An equivalent combination of education and experience.

This is a full-time non-civil service position with a salary range of $69,600 - $111,300 and a comprehensive benefits package. Those considered for employment must authorize release of a criminal background check from the Maryland State Police.

To Apply: Please forward resumes by e-mail to the attention of:

Ms. Susan Olubi, Director of Administrative Services,
Mayor’s Office of Human Services,
7 E. Redwood Street, 5th Floor, Baltimore, MD 21202;

No facsimiles accepted. Applications will be accepted on a continuous basis until filled. Baltimore City is an Equal Opportunity Employer

Helpful Tool: SSVF Companion Guide to Program Changes

Hi Team,

I know that you know this, but this is just a quick reminder  that The Companion Guide to Program Changes is on the SSVF website. It can be found under Tab 2, Official Guide to the SSVF Program, and then Reporting and Monitoring Requirements.

The guide (huge thanks to Lindsay) has great examples and also walks you step by step through the process in GIFTs.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me.

Thanks so much!


Adrienne Nash Melendez, MLD
Regional Coordinator
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
Please note new email address:

FY 2016 Continuum of Care (CoC) Program Competition: CoC Final ARD Report Posted

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U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development HUD Exchange Mailing List

FY 2016 Continuum of Care (CoC) Program Competition: CoC Final ARD Report Posted

CoC ARD Report

The FY 2016 CoC Final Annual Renewal Demand (ARD) Report is posted on the HUD Exchange. As discussed in the FY 2016 CoC Program Competition NOFA, Section IV.A, approximately $1.9 billion is available in this FY 2016 CoC Program Competition. Although the amount available is expected to be sufficient to fund anticipated eligible renewal projects in FY 2016, HUD will continue to require Collaborative Applicants to rank all projects, except CoC planning and Unified Funding Agency (UFA) Costs, in two tiers. Tier 1 is equal to 93 percent of the CoC’s FY 2016 Annual Renewal Demand (ARD) approved by HUD on the final HUD-approved Grant Inventory Worksheet (GIW), finalized either during the FY 2016 CoC Program Registration process or during the grace period that ended on July 22, 2016. Tier 2 is the difference between Tier 1 and the CoC’s ARD plus any amount available for the permanent housing bonus.

Listserv Communications

All information related to the FY 2016 CoC Program Competition is communicated via the HUD Exchange Mailing List. Join the mailing list to receive important updates and reminders.
If you are aware or suspect that the Collaborative Applicant, CoC members, or interested stakeholders are not currently receiving these listserv messages, please forward the following link,, to them to register for the listserv messages as this is the only form of communication used by HUD to the public.
If you have questions related to subscribing to the HUD Exchange mailing list or have issues receiving listserv messages in your inbox please contact Please be sure to add and to your contact list or safe senders list. This ensures that messages from the HUD Exchange go to your inbox and are not filtered to your spam or junk folder.


If you have questions pertaining to e-snaps technical issues, please submit your questions to the e-snaps Ask A Question (AAQ) portal on the HUD Exchange website. To submit a question to the e-snaps AAQ portal, select “e-snaps” from the “My question is related to” drop down list on Step 2 of the question submission process.
If you have questions related to the CoC Program interim rule or a policy related question, please submit your questions to the CoC Program Ask A Question (AAQ) portal. To submit a question to the CoC Program AAQ portal, select “CoC Program” from the “My question is related to” drop down list on Step 2 of the question submission process.
The AAQ portal accepts question submissions 24/7. However, responses are usually provided between 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM Eastern Time, Monday through Friday, except for weekends and federal holidays. Additionally, per the FY 2016 CoC Program Competition NOFA, starting 2 days prior to the application deadline for FY 2016 funds, the AAQ will respond only to emergency technical support questions up to the deadline of Wednesday, September 14, 2016 at 7:59:59 PM EDT.

Upcoming: NHSDC Fall Conference - New Orleans, LA - October 13-14, 2016

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U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development HUD Exchange Mailing List

Upcoming: NHSDC Fall Conference - New Orleans, LA - October 13-14, 2016

The National Human Services Data Consortium (NHSDC) is a collaborative organization that understands the importance of data quality and the value of using valid and reliable data for community planning and performance measurement. NHSDC has worked for over 11 years to deliver conferences that allow Homeless Management Information System (HMIS) professionals to discuss current challenges and best practices while developing a critical network of peer support.
As in past years, the NHSDC conference is a HUD-approved conference. Therefore, HMIS funds awarded under the Continuum of Care (CoC) and Emergency Solutions Grants (ESG) Programs may be used to attend the 2016 NHSDC Fall Conference. Projects without funds designated for HMIS cannot use funds from other budget line items (e.g., supportive service funds) to attend this event.
For more information, please visit the NHSDC website.

SSVF Program Updates August 5, 2016 - DEADLINE CHANGE

Hi Team,

I hope that you had a great weekend. This is the latest Program Update. Please review it in detail. Additionally, please note that the deadline for Quarter 4 Program Changes has been revised from 9/1 to 8/15 (next Monday). Please plan accordingly and let me know if you have any questions. The move up in the due date is to assist grantees as they prepare for the close of the grant year.

Thanks so much!


From: SSVF
Sent: Friday, August 05, 2016 12:24 PM
Subject: SSVF Program Updates August 5, 2016
Importance: High


1.     SSVF Program Change Requests (FY 16, QTR 4) due by August 15, 2016
2.     Clarification on SSVF Regional Meeting Participation
3.     VA Releases SSVF Proposed Rule for Public Comment
4.     Grantee Action Needed Regarding Outstanding FFR Financial Status Reports (FSR)
5.     Save the Date:  SSVF Education Webinar on August 16, 2016 at 2:00 PM EDT
6.     Save the Date:  SSVF National Webinar on August 18, 2016 at 2:00 PM EDT

SSVF Program Change Requests (FY 16, QTR 4) due by August 15, 2016 (*New, Earlier Due Date*)

This is the final opportunity for SSVF grantees to submit Program Change Requests related to existing grants before the end of the fiscal year.  Grantees are encouraged to assess their progress toward program goals and identify if there is any need to request significant changes related to program operations or final quarter spending.  This includes conducting an assessment of remaining grant funds per HHS subaccount and determining if there is any need to transfer funds among subaccounts.  The SSVF Program Office has opened the online requirement forms so that grantees may submit these changes earlier in the quarter and receive notifications of approval or denial before the end of the grant term.  Thank you to those who have already submitted their requests.  Program Change Requests must be received via the SSVF grants management system (GIFTS) by COB on August 15, 2016.  NOTE:  Completing an internal assessment of program change needs NOW will help grantees determine whether they will need to request a 30-day grant extension LATER.  Do not request grant extensions within the Program Change Request form.  The SSVF Program Office will provide extension details during the National Grantee Webinar on August 18th.  

Clarification on SSVF Regional Meeting Participation
We would like to provide clarification regarding the upcoming set of SSVF Regional Meetings. The Regional Meetings will be held from late August through early October at 10 locations throughout the U.S.  Grantees are assigned to one of these 10 locations and will receive email notification regarding meeting sites and registration details.  Please note that the Regional Meeting is a one-day event that offers SSVF 101 training and practices related to rapid rehousing, Housing First, and homelessness prevention.  Due to space limitations, grantees may register no more than two (2) program staff for this one-day Regional Meeting.  Furthermore, grantee representatives may attend only one of two tracks that will run concurrently at the Regional Meeting: 1) a track targeted for Direct Service staff, or 2) a track targeted for Program Management staff.    
Grantees with more than one SSVF grant award, they may send up to two (2) representatives per grant award.  Registration for the August Regional Meetings has opened and assigned grantees have received these notifications. In the coming weeks, grantees assigned to meetings taking place in September and October will receive notification of their meeting site, as well as registration details.  When you receive the registration email (sent to the primary and secondary contacts within your agency's SSVF grants management account) please be sure to complete registration before it closes.
IMPORTANT:  For those grantees who serve the location (city) in which the regional meeting is being held, VA has added an additional day for grantees and community stakeholders that will focus on community coordination efforts.  These meetings are customized to meet the needs of the local community.  If you have questions, please contact Bobby Thompson at:

VA Releases SSVF Proposed Rule for Public Comment

The VA has released proposed changes to the SSVF Final Rule, which is open for public comment until September 26, 2016.  The link to the proposed rule can be found at:

Grantee Action Needed Regarding Outstanding FFR Financial Status Reports (FSR)

This is a reminder to grantees that they must close any outstanding (FY 14 and FY 15) FFR Financial Status Reports in the HHS Payment Management System.  It is a Federal requirement that all SSVF grantees submit the Financial Status Report portion of the Federal Financial Report (SF-425). Grantees must complete this report for all subaccounts within the HHS Payment Management System no later than 45 days after the end of the grant term, or at the end of an approved grant extension.

IMPORTANT:  Effective August 31, 2016, any failure to complete this process will cause a suspension of your HHS SSVF accountYour HHS account will remain frozen until this delinquency is resolved.  Please note that all SSVF grant accounts associated with that grantee's banking will be frozen.

Instructions can be found within the HHS website:

Please note that only the FFR Financial Status Report (FSR) is required and the FFR Cash Transaction Report is NOT required.

Save the Date for the SSVF Education Webinar on August 16, 2016 at 2:00 PM EDT

Topic:  VAMC Data Sharing and Integration into Coordinated Entry Systems
The SSVF program office has reviewed the most recent community plan submissions and we recognize that many communities have requested technical assistance related to sharing data.  Please join SSVF providers and their respective Continuum of Care leads from Houston, Los Angeles, and Austin to learn how these communities implemented successful practices for data sharing and VA program integration within their coordinated entry systems. This peer-to-peer learning opportunity is optional for those who would like to improve coordination in their communities.  Registration link will be provided.

Save the Date for the SSVF National Webinar on August 18, 2016 at 2:00 PM EDT

Topic:  Understanding the Requirements and Procedures for Completing the FY 16 Year End Closing

This webinar will review key requirements for completing the SSVF FY 16 closing.  Information will be provided by the SSVF Program Office related to required performance and expenditure reports, final requests for program changes, HHS subaccount transfers, and 30-day grant extension opportunities.  Join this informative webinar to learn how long grantees have to submit final reports and which online systems will be used to meet each requirement. Additionally, a detailed overview of the Financial Status Report (FSR) portion of the Federal Financial Requirement (FFR) will be provided.  Registration link will be provided.

Thank you,

SSVF Program Office

NOTE:  If you are receiving this email in error, please disregard.  We request your patience as the SSVF Program Office continues to address system issues with the grants management database.

SOAR 2016 Outcomes - We're Counting on You!